Guilherme Nabais Freitas, Trinity

Degree: PhD
Course: English
Supervisor: Dr Sophie Read
Dissertation Title:

Englished, Mythologiz’d and Represented in Figures’: Mythographic Practice in Renaissance England from Spenser to Milton

Biographical Information

Before returning to Trinity College (B.A., 2017-2020), I completed the MSt (1550-1700) in English at Christ Church, Oxford.

My PhD thesis approaches in an Empsonian sort of way the relationship between Graeco-Roman (and in one case Mesoamerican) myth and poetics in early modern England. Each chapter looks at how a specific poet or set of poets approach a common mythic motif to say something about how they write poetry, their desired readership, and their position within self-constructed intellectual lineages. What I am tentatively calling "mythic confections", as they appear in early modern poetry, stand somewhere in between philologically straightforward quellenforschung and Leonard Barkan's metamorphic Renaissance myths, at the same time resisting the textual assimilation on which both rely. 

Last academic year (2022-23), I co-convened the Faculty's Graduate Research Forum, as well as the History Faculty's Workshop for the Early Modern Period. I co-organised, with Juliette Bretan, the English Faculty's inaugural Graduate Symposium on "How do stories shape our world?". For the 2023-4 admissions cycle, I was a marker for the Cambridge English Literature Admissions Test (CELAT). Outside the Faculty, I play an active role in my college's MCR as Liaison Officer (the point of contact between postgraduate students and the college fellowship). 

At Cambridge, I have taught Part IA, Paper 2 'Shakespeare'; Part IB, Paper 5 'English Literature and its Contexts, 1500-1700'; Part II, Paper 2 'Tragedy'; and, Part II, Paper 15 'The Ethical Imagination'. I have also supervised numerous dissertations. 

My doctoral studies are generously funded by Trinity College's Alice and James Penney Studentship in English or European Literature. 

Research Interests

Myth, Poetics, Sermon Studies, Rhetoric, Patristic Reception, Early Modern Science, Neo-Latin poetry.

I also have a long-standing interest in the writing of Pearl S. Buck (especially looking beyond The Good Earth). 

Selected Publications

Book Chapters 

  • 'Lancelot Andrewes et William Perkins: Perspectives protestantes sur le corps dans l'Angleterre élisabéthaine et jacobine', trans. Ueli Zahnd and Paul-Alexis Mellet, in Une religion sans corps? Corporalité et incarnation dans la pensée de la première réforme, eds. Benedikt Brunner, Ueli Zahnd, Paul-Alexis Mellet (Geneva, Droz) (forthcoming)

Journal Articles