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R. Allen Shoaf

Professor Emeritus

R. Allen Shoaf (BA, Wake Forest, 1970; BA Hon., East Anglia, 1972; MA Cornell, 1975; PhD Cornell, 1977) was the second English Alumni Professor (1990–1993). He co-founded and edited Exemplaria: A Journal of Theory in Medieval and Renaissance Studies between 1987 and 2008.

Professor Shoaf is the author or editor of 13 books and 90 papers and reviews; he delivered 75 public addresses (seven plenary) during his career; he evaluated manuscripts for publication 61 times; and he served as extramural referee in 60 Tenure and Promotion cases in the U.S., Canada, and Switzerland. He regularly published on Dante, Chaucer, the Gawain-poet, Thomas Usk, Shakespeare, Milton, and literary theory. His most recent scholarly book publication was Lucretius and Shakespeare on the Nature of Things (2014).

He received two teaching awards in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (1992, 1998), and, in 1992, he won university-wide “Teacher of the Year” honors. In 1996, he was selected Outstanding Teacher in the Region by SAADE (South Atlantic Association of Departments of English). He won Teaching Incentive Program Awards (two, 1994 and 1998) and twice competed successfully in the Salary Pay Plan (Post-tenure Review) for Professors (1996 and 2009) at UF.

In December 1998, Professor Shoaf won his second Fellowship of the National Endowment for the Humanities (he held his first in 1983). In November and December 1999, he taught by invitation a special four-week seminar on Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde in the University of Berne (Switzerland). In 2004, he served as External Member of the Appointments Committee for the Chair in Medieval English Literature in the University of Geneva, Switzerland; in 2009 he served in the same capacity for the University of Bern in Switzerland. He spent fall term 2005 on a sabbatical. In May 2010, he was honored with two sessions at the International Congress of Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, in recognition of his service to the profession as Editor of Exemplaria.

In 2019 he published his fourth volume of poetry, Language to Live In, with Austin Macauley, Ltd.

His UF website is