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Amherst College > News & Events > Amherst Magazine > Archives > Spring 2002 > College Row
College Row

New director at Folger

Gail Kern Paster, a noted Shakespearean scholar, has been named director of the Folger Shakespeare Library, the fifth in the library's 70-year history. She takes office on July 1. Paster's appointment was announced in March by the Amherst Trustees, who administer the Folger under the will of the library's founder, Henry Clay Folger, Class of 1879. Paster succeeds Werner Gundersheimer '59, who retires
at the end of June after 18 years at the Folger's helm (see Winter 2001 Amherst).

Paster is professor of English at the George Washington University, where she has taught since 1974. She is also editor of Shakespeare Quarterly, the leading scholarly journal devoted to Shakespeare, published by the Folger in association with George Washington University. She holds a B.A., magna cum laude, from Smith College, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and a Ph.D. from Yale University.

She is the author of numerous scholarly articles and two books—The Idea of the City in the Age of Shakespeare (1986) and The Body Embarrassed: Drama and the Disciplines of Shame in Early Modern England (1993).

Karen Hastie Williams, chair of the Folger's Trustees' committee, announcing the appointment, said "Dr. Paster brings to this position an extraordinary career of academic scholarship, a passion for Shakespeare and the early modern period, and a vision of new horizons for the Folger within the Washington community as well as on the world stage."

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