Dr Tom Rutter

Senior Lecturer in Shakespeare and Renaissance Drama


School of English
Jessop West
1 Upper Hanover Street
Sheffield S3 7RA


I arrived at the University of Sheffield in 2012 after six years at Sheffield Hallam University, before which I taught at University College London (where I took my PhD) and then at London South Bank University. Before that, I studied for my BA at St John’s College, Oxford.

My main area of expertise is Renaissance literature, especially drama. My PhD explored the representation of work on the early modern stage; when rewriting my thesis as a book I became increasingly interested in playing companies and how they bring together the activities of disparate groups such as dramatists, actors, audiences, patrons, theatre owners and booksellers, offering a way of linking dramatic production to wider forces in society.

I have gone on to focus on a single company, the Admiral’s Men, who performed most of the plays of Christopher Marlowe as well as work by Thomas Kyd, Thomas Dekker, George Chapman and others.

I am co-director of the Sheffield Centre for Early Modern Studies.


I recently published a book about the Admiral’s Men, having produced several essays and articles about plays in their repertory. I also have a particular interest in the plays of Shakespeare (who didn’t write for the Admiral’s Men) and Marlowe, as well as in the institutional contexts of the early modern theatre. I am currently co-editing (with Lisa Hopkins of Sheffield Hallam University) a collection of essays on the Cavendish family, and am beginning a project on early modern drama and the sciences.

I am an editor of the journal Shakespeare: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/rshk20


I teach on the following modules:

  • LIT113: Foundations in Literary Study
  • LIT114: Shakespeare
  • LIT234: Renaissance Literature
  • LIT254: Christopher Marlowe
  • LIT 6047: Early Modern Books
  • EGH629: Pastoral Literature
  • EGH602 Research Methods In English Studies
  • EGH6023: Reconsidering the Renaissance

I am also currently convener for the MA English Literature programme.


I am currently supervising PhDs on cloth in the plays of Thomas Middleton, Shakespeare and the Gothic, and Samuel Daniel’s Cleopatra (an edition).

I would welcome applications to do postgraduate work on Renaissance drama, particularly in the areas of Shakespeare, Marlowe, repertory studies, and early modern science.


  • Shakespeare and the Admiral’s Men: Reading Across Repertories on the London Stage, 1594-1600 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017)
  • The Cambridge Introduction to Christopher Marlowe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012)
  • Work and Play on the Shakespearean Stage (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008)
Chapter in books
  • Allusions to Marlowe in Printed Plays, 1594’, Christopher Marlowe, Theatrical Commerce, and the Book Trade, ed. Roslyn Lander Knutson and Kirk Melnikoff (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018), 199-213.
  • ‘The Communities of George Chapman’s All Fools’, Community-Making in Early Stuart Theatres: Stage and Audience, ed. Roger D. Sell, Anthony W. Johnson and Helen Wilcox (Abingdon: Routledge, 2017), 218-38
  • ‘The Spanish Tragedy and Virgil’, ‘The Spanish Tragedy’: A Critical Reader, ed. Thomas Rist (London: Bloomsbury Arden Shakespeare, 2016), 153-74
  • ‘Tamburlaine: Parts One and Two’, Christopher Marlowe at 450, ed. Sara Munson Deats and Robert A. Logan (Farnham: Ashgate, 2015), 51-70
  • ‘Texts and Performances in the Age of Elizabeth’, A Companion to British Literature, vol. 2: Early Modern Literature 1450-1660, ed. Robert DeMaria, Jr., Heesok Chang and Samantha Zacher (Chichester: Wiley Blackwell, 2014), 181-96
  • ‘The Professional Theatre and Marlowe’, Marlowe in Context, ed. Emma Smith and Emily Bartels (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2013), 262-72
  • ‘Englishmen for My Money: Work and Social Conflict?’, Working Subjects in Early Modern English Drama, ed. Michelle M. Dowd and Natasha Korda (Farnham: Ashgate, 2011), 87-99
  • ‘Adult Playing Companies 1603 to 1613’, The Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Theatre, ed. Richard Dutton (Oxford: Oxford UP, 2009), 72-87
Journal articles
  • ‘Hamlet, Pirates, and Purgatory’, Renaissance and Reformation / Renaissance et Réforme 38 (2015), 117-40
  • ‘Marlowe, Hoffman, and the Admiral’s Men’, Marlowe Studies: An Annual 3 (2013), 49-62
  • ‘Issues in Review: Dramatists, Playing Companies, and Repertories’, Early Theatre 13.3 (2011), 121-89 (edited collection including ‘Introduction: The Repertory-Based Approach’, 121-32)
  • ‘Marlowe, the “Mad Priest of the Sun”, and Heliogabalus’, Early Theatre 13.2 (2010), 109-20 (winner of the Early Theatre prize for best note on any topic in vols 12 and 13)
  • ‘Marlovian Echoes in the Repertory of the Admiral’s Men’, Shakespeare Bulletin 27.1 (Spring 2009): 27-38
  • ‘Repertory Studies: An Overview’, Shakespeare 4.3 (September 2008) 352-66
  • ‘Patient Grissil and Jonsonian Satire’, Studies in English Literature 48.2 (Spring 2008), 283-303
  • ‘The Actors in Sir Thomas More’, Shakespeare Yearbook, 16 (2007), 223-40