Professor Emma Smith revisits the fascinating question of Shakespeare's own religious allegiances in the doctrinal ferment of post-Reformation England.
Southwark Cathedral has many connections with the bard, Shakespeare's brother Edmund who is buried in the Cathedral and his collaborator John Fletcher connect him to the Cathedral.
Professor Smith will also draw in another literary son, the medieval poet John Gower whose tomb is in the Cathedral's north aisle. The figure of Gower in one of Shakespeare's most popular plays during his own lifetime, Pericles, helps us to look anew at the role of memory, nostalgia, and Marian symbolism in Shakespeare's dramatic imagination.
Emma Smith is Professor of Shakespeare Studies at Hertford College, Oxford and the author of Shakespeare's First Folio: Four Centuries of an Iconic Book.