Annalisa Castaldo

Annalisa Castaldo, MA, MEd, PhD

  • Professor
Media Expertise:
  • Gender & Sexuality
  • Arts & Culture

Affiliated Programs


  • MA, Literature (1990)
    The Johns Hopkins University (MD)
  • PhD, English Literature (1999)
    Temple University (PA)
  • MEd, Human Sexuality (2014)
    Widener University (PA)

About Me

I received my master's from The Johns Hopkins University and my PhD from Temple University. I specialize in Shakespeare and other early modern dramatists. I focus on gender and sexuality as well as performance issues and modern adaptations.  I've been affiliated with the Philadelphia Shakespeare Theater for a number of years now, offering lectures on early modern drama and serving as a dramaturg. I am currently working on a book on magic and gender in early modern plays. 


I'm also lucky enough to teach Medieval literature, as well as courses on women writers and science fiction. In 2014, I earned a MEd in the field of human sexuality through Widener's program. The program has helped me in my investigations of gender and sexuality in both the 16th and 21st centuries. In 2023 I stepped down as the director of Widener's gender & women's studies program but continue teaching cross-listed courses.

At Home with Humanities

At Home with Humanities

Take a virtual tour of the Humanities Department featuring artwork from our students and published works from our faculty


Research Interests

My current research interest is how magic was performed on the early modern stage and how magic interacts with gender norms. I also enjoy the work of editing editions of early modern plays.

Media Expertise

  • Shakespearean film
  • Shakespearean performance
  • Medieval/Renaissance women
  • Women's movement, women's issues
  • Fairy tales and vampires


  • Castaldo, Annalisa. A Majesty Unlike Itself: The Glove Episode of Henry V in Bear Your Body More Seeming: Confronting Early Modern Stage Practice. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2015. Print.
  • Castaldo, Annalisa. '''Here Sit We Down': The Positioning of Andrea and Revenge." Shakespeare Expressed: Page, Sage and Classroom in Shakespeare and his Contemporaries. Ed. Kathryn Moncrief, Kathryn McPhereson, and Sarah Enloe. Madison: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2013. 209–218. Print.
  • Castaldo, Annalisa. Henry VI: Parts 1-3. Newburyport, MA: Focus Publishers, 2015. Print.


In the Media


  • English Professor Publishes Text on Study of Fictional Versions of Shakespeare

    Annalisa Castaldo, associate professor of English and director of Gender Women and Sexuality Studies, published the book "Fictional Shakespeares and Portraits of Genius." The text offers a study of fictional versions of Shakespeare which demonstrates that Shakespeare is used to explore and understand different conceptions of genius. This study is the first to investigate how cultural interpretations of "genius" influence, and are reflected in, fictional portraits of Shakespeare. It explores the wide range of portraits (including children's books, romance novels, graphic novels, and film) that bring Shakespeare to life, and suggests that different portrayals present different conceptions of genius. 

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  • Annalisa Castaldo's pitch wins at Blackfriars Conference Staging Session

    Annalisa Castaldo, an associate professor of English, participated in the Blackfriars Conference Staging Sessions at the American Shakespeare Center, where her pitch to have the company perform Thomas Kyd's "The Spanish Tragedy" was selected for future production.

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