Preussner Celebrates Book Launch and Retirement

Truman will celebrate the life’s work of Arnold Preussner and the official launching of his book, “Replaying the Renaissance: Essays in Shakespeare, Jonson, and Others,” at a reception from 2:30-4 p.m. April 30 at the University Art Gallery in Ophelia Parrish.

Preussner, a professor of English at Truman, is retiring after 21 years of service, during which he taught Shakespeare and Renaissance literature and introduced literary analysis to more than one thousand students. Recognizing the breadth of students’ interests, and the way in which the field of English evolves, he has taught courses on sports literature and been an active proponent of film as literature. “Renaissance” means rebirth, he argues, and it’s always happening.

At the reception, Preussner will be available to sign copies of his book, a collection of essays on diverse works of English Renaissance literature. In 40 essays, some previously published, others developed out of conference presentations, “Replaying the Renaissance” offers insight into how a genuine Renaissance man views his world.

Though Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are featured in about half of the essays, others explore comic practices from the Greek playwright Aristophanes through film directors Woody Allen and Nora Ephron. The breadth of Preussner’s interests comes out in essays highlighting beast fables, marriage conventions, gender coding and even political wisdom. They cover 35 years’ worth of reflections on human art and human nature.

“Replaying the Renaissance” is dedicated to Preussner’s wife, fellow Truman professor Alanna Preussner, and to their daughter Amy. It is published by Neal Delmonico’s Naciketas Press, with cover design by Rusty Nelson, chair of the Truman Art Department.

The retirement reception and book launch are sponsored by the School of Arts and Letters, the Department of English and Linguistics.

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