Sanchez Named Regan Professor of English
Melissa E. Sanchez, Professor of English, has been appointed Donald T. Regan Professor of English. Sanchez’s research and teaching focus on feminism, queer theory, and sixteenth- and seventeenth-century literature, including the works of William Shakespeare and Edmund Spenser. She has made significant contributions to early modern studies in her books Erotic Subjects: The Sexuality of Politics in Early Modern English Literature, Queer Faith: Reading Promiscuity and Race in the Secular Love Tradition, and Shakespeare and Queer Theory, as well as three edited volumes and numerous peer-reviewed articles. Currently, she is editing the Routledge Companion to Queer Literary Studies and has begun two new book-length projects, "What Were Women Writers?" and "Feminism Now: Method and Affect."
Sanchez has been a member of the Executive Committees of the International Spenser Society and the Milton Society of America, and she currently serves on the editorial board of Shakespeare Quarterly. At Penn she is also a member of the Graduate Group in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory and Core Faculty in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. She has played important leadership roles, including Graduate Chair of English and Director of the Penn-in-London Summer Program. She has also been a Penn Fellow. In 2009 she received the Penn Arts & Sciences Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Award for Distinguished Teaching by an Assistant Professor.
This professorship is named for the late Donald T. Regan, Hon’72, who had an impressive career as an executive at Merrill Lynch, Secretary of the Treasury, and Chief of Staff for President Ronald Reagan. He also served as chair of the University’s Board of Trustees. The chair was established by Merrill Lynch and the friends of the late Mr. Regan in 1981 to recognize a distinguished scholar in English who has a strong commitment to undergraduate teaching, particularly the teaching of writing. This chair reflects Mr. Regan’s interest in the English language and his belief that the development of a student’s use of language is one of the most important ends of higher education.