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Trent English Professor Elected President of International Shaw Society

Leading Shaw Scholar Dr. Leonard Conolly to Begin Two-Year Term in January

Trent English Professor Elected Presiden Dr. Leonard Conolly, a professor of English Literature at Trent and a world-renowned Bernard Shaw scholar, has been appointed the new president of the International Shaw Society (ISS).

A founding member of the ISS, as well as corresponding scholar for the Shaw Festival and literary adviser to the Estate of Bernard Shaw, Dr. Conolly will take office on January 1, 2010 for a two-year term.

“The ISS has been instrumental in promoting the study of Bernard Shaw, and I look forward to helping to maintain the momentum that has developed in Shaw scholarship under the auspices of the ISS,” Dr. Conolly said. “The ISS has been particularly successful in attracting a new generation of Shaw scholars, and I hope very much that we can continue to attract younger scholars to the study of one of the world’s greatest playwrights and provocateurs.”

During Dr. Conolly's term of office the ISS will sponsor, in conjunction with the Shaw Festival and the University of Guelph, a major international conference in honour of the fiftieth anniversary season of the Shaw Festival in 2011. Dr. Conolly's illustrated history of the Festival will be published during the anniversary season.

Considered one of the world’s leading Shaw scholars, Dr. Conolly has been reading, viewing, and studying Shaw's work for 50 years. He is the founder of two scholarly journals and the author or editor of 14 books on Shaw and other theatre and literature subjects. He has also published over 60 research essays and reviews. In 1998 the theatre archives at the University of Guelph, one of the largest such archives in North America, were named the L. W. Conolly Theatre Archives in Dr. Conolly’s honour.

Prof. Conolly holds an M.A. from McMaster and a Ph.D. from Wales, and joined Trent as the University’s fifth president in 1994. In 2002, he was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, considered Canada's senior academic accolade, and has been a senior member of Robinson College at Cambridge since 1981. In 2005, he received the Distinguished Research Award from Trent. The University of Guelph awarded Prof. Conolly an honorary degree in 2007.

The International Shaw Society is a scholarly organization with members from numerous countries. The mission of the ISS is to promote and support research into all aspects of the work of Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) through scholarly publications, symposia, and conferences.

Posted on Thursday, December 10, 2009.

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