Mara R. Wade


Getty Residential Scholar Grant

Mara Wade has been awarded a Getty Residential Scholar Grant for Fall semester 2018 at the Getty Research Institute for her new project “The Politics of Culture: Public Monuments in the Free Imperial City, Nürnberg 1521-1620.” Every year since 1985 the Research Institute has welcomed scholars, artists, and other cultural figures from around the world to work in residence at the Institute on projects that bear upon its annual research theme. While in residence, they pursue their own research projects, make use of Getty collections, and participate in the intellectual life of the Getty Center and the Getty Villa. The Fall term of the 2018-2019 Scholar Year is devoted to the theme of “Monumentality.”

DAAD/ Book Prize in German Literature and Cultural Studies

Committee Chair, Mara R. Wade:  This prize is funded through the North American office of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and carries an award of $1,000. Submissions on or before 10 March 2018.  Submissions for this prize have now closed.


Mara R. Wade, Vice President, Renaissance Society of America, 2018-2020

“I am pleased to announce that upon the recommendation of the RSA Selection Committee, the Executive Board has approved the appointment of Professor Mara Wade as the next Vice President of the RSA. Wade is Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, with cross appointments in Comparative and World Literatures and Gender and Women’s Studies. (…)
The committee and board especially took note of the significance of Wade’s work in bridging the world of the digital humanities with the world of scholarship on emblems, her broad connections in many fields, the historic depth of her commitment to the RSA, her strong record of receipt of international fellowships, and her dedication to teaching and lecturing widely.
We look forward to welcoming Prof. Wade to the RSA Board when her term of office begins in March 2018. She will serve two years as the society’s Vice President, followed by two years as President and then two years as Immediate Past President. I think it is fair to note that for the first time in the society’s history, all three stages of the presidency are held by women.”

Pamela Smith, President, 2016–18

Current Work

“Skokloster as  Laboratory of Early Modern Studies,” organized with Elisabeth Wåghäll-Nivre, Stockholm University,  August 2017.  Uniting extensive collections of books, weapons, and art in a single location, Skokloster provides a compact and efficient way to study early modern Europe. The breadth and depth of these collections demand scholars with a wide array of expertise in languages and subject specialization. The project is interdisciplinary involving academic researchers, museum curators, and librarians with special skills to interrogate the collections; the project is comparative in its aim, as the rich collections at Skokloster demand a variety of linguistic and cultural approaches. Carl Gustav Wrangel’s palace at Skokloster is a self-contained historical toolbox for the study of this period.

See research:

See participants:

“Emblematica Politica in Early Modern Nürnberg” explores the intellectual, political, and artistic contexts of a recently discovered book at the Newberry Library (see below). Lia Markey (Director, Center for Renaissance Studies, Newberry Library) and Mara R Wade (University of Illinois) will work with graduate students to transcribe the manuscript.  The conference, workshop, and volume of expert essays about the “Emblemata Politica” are in planning stages thanks to generous support from the Kress Foundation.

Please see: “Emblematic of the Lost Art of Nürnberg,” about my discovery at the Newberry Library, Chicago:

Recent Lectures

“Emblems Across the Religious Divide: Mobility, Polyglot Emblems, and the
Education of Dorothea, Princess of Anhalt,” 27 October 2017, Sixteenth Century Conference, Milwaukee, WI.

Emblemata Politica in Context: Civic Virtues in the Free Imperial City of Nürnberg,” 11e Congrès de la Society for Emblem Studies,  3-7 July 2017, Nancy, France.

“The Album amicorum and Women’s Networks of Knowledge,” 23 May 2017, University of Chicago, Renaissance Seminar.

“Emblems and Civic Identity: Georg Rem’s Emblemata Politica,” 16 May 2017, Fellows’ Seminar, Newberry Library, Chicago.

Emblematica Online: A Virtual Window into the European Renaissance,” a public presentation on 19 April 2017 at the Newberry Library:

Home Department

Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures


Courtesy (Zero-time) Appointments

Campus Honors Program

Comparative and World Literature

Gender and Women’s Studies

Library Administration

Scandinavian Studies

Jewish Culture and Society

LAS Global Studies

European Union Center

Media and Cinema Studies

Center for Global Studies

Contact Information


Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures
2090 Foreign Languages Building
707 S. Mathews Avenue
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Urbana, Illinois 61801 USA

Phone: (217) 333-8777

Fax: +217 244-2223