Roland Greene | Queen Elizabeth I’s Claim to California: A Counterfactual History

2023 Classes Without Quizzes

In 1579, Sir Francis Drake claimed the West Coast of the United States for England—a claim that technically persisted for centuries. What if Queen Elizabeth I had pursued the claim, instead of leaving it to her successor to mount a different agenda for settlement on the East Coast? Both historical and hypothetical, this talk explores the world of 1579 and after. 


About the Speaker

Roland Greene assumed the directorship of the Stanford Humanities Center in September 2019. As Director of the Center, he holds the Anthony P. Meier Family Professorship in the Humanities. He is also the Mark Pigott KBE Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences and is Professor of English and Comparative Literature. His research and teaching are concerned with the early modern literatures of England, Latin Europe, and the transatlantic world, and with poetry and poetics from the Renaissance to the present. Greene is the author of several books, including Five Words: Critical Semantics in the Age of Shakespeare and Cervantes (2013).

About the Series

Classes Without Quizzes is organized by the Stanford Alumni Association. Guests are invited to listen to Stanford faculty delve into the humanities, hot topics, practical advice, technology, and more. Whether you'd like to see a favorite professor, learn about the latest groundbreaking research or tour an interesting spot on campus, you'll find something to spark your intellectual curiosity.

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