Beth Savage, PhD

Associate Professor of English
Director of Gender Studies
Assistant Director, Westover Honors Program


Hall Campus Center, #232


Before joining the faculty at Lynchburg College, I was a graduate student and adjunct professor at the University of Illinois where I taught English literature, composition, and business writing.


I completed my BA in English and philosophy at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia. I received my MA and PhD from the University of Illinois.

Professional/Research Interests

Drama, especially comedy; the “laboring poets” of the eighteenth-century; representations of mothers and motherhood; the history of medicine, specifically midwifery; feminist theory and masculinity studies.

I recently took a week-long trip to the British Library in London and the Chawton House Library in Alton to research the earliest examples of Mesmerism in English literature. This research will form the basis of an upcoming article, and will culminate in an edited collection of primary texts representing the transatlantic movement of Mesmeric ideas.

Publications and Conference Presentations

  • “Phallic Nationalism: Limits of Male Homosocial Desire in A Spy on Mother Midnight.” Forthcoming. Genders (Fall 2012).
  • “‘Treat me in every respect as an arrant woman’: English Masculinity, Pornography, and Cross-dressing in the Eighteenth Century.” Invited lecture co-sponsored by the Department of English and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, California Polytechnic University, May 2011.
  • “‘There’s always bitter mingled with the sweet’: Exposure and Contamination in Eighteenth-Century Laboring Poetry.” Presented as a part of the Lynchburg College Faculty Lecture Series, April 2011.
  • “‘For Want of Clelia’: Re-placing the maternal body in The Twin Rivals.” Comparative Drama 42.4 (Winter 2008-09).
  • “Phallic Nationalism: Cross-dressing and the limits of male homosocial desire in A Spy on Mother Midnight.” Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies Conference, Philadelphia, Penn., November 2008.
  • “‘Is he not strangely altered?’: Refiguring the father in Aphra Behn’s Sir Patient Fancy.” Aphra Behn Society Conference, Albuquerque, N.M., October 2007.
  • “‘Thou Life and Soul of Secret Dealings’: The threat of the midwife in Farquhar’s The Twin Rivals.” Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies Conference, Chicago, Ill., February 2007.
  • Chair, “Staging social anxieties” panel. Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies Conference, Chicago, Ill., February 2007.

Courses Taught

  • Composition
  • World Literature
  • Eighteenth-Century Literature


  • Modern Language Association (MLA)
  • Group for Early Modern Cultural Studies
  • Aphra Behn Society