Holly Barbaccia (Women's Studies/English): Assistant Professor of English, Director of Women's Studies
At William & Mary, I majored in English and minored in Women's Studies; my coursework included such classes as "Women in Antiquity" and "Feminist Domesticity", and my senior Honors thesis dealt with Petrarchism in the erotic lyric poetry of Aphra Behn, a Restoration writer best known for her plays and novellas. After graduating, I went on to a Ph.D. program in English at the University of Pennsylvania. There, I earned a graduate certificate in Women's Studies, taking courses in topics like "Women in Poetry" and "Premodern Women and Writing." My dissertation topic considered female harbingers and instigators of change and exchange in fourteenth-century Middle English poetry, including John Gower's Constance, William Langland's Lady Meed, the Gawain-poet's Lady Bertilak, and Geoffrey Chaucer's Criseyde.
Today, I teach English and direct the Women's Studies program at Georgetown College, a small, private, historically Baptist liberal-arts college in central Kentucky. I am deeply grateful for the intellectual and personal opportunities William & Mary afforded me through English, Women's Studies, and related extra-curricular groups (like the Feminist Student Organization). I look to that background constantly for inspiration and direction as a teacher and mentor.