Photo credits:
Mikael Wallerstedt

Mara R. Wade

Fellow, SCAS.
Professor of German, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Mara Wade is Professor of German at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is the
immediate past president of the Renaissance Society of America. She has achieved international
recognition, particularly for her research on emblems, European courts and festival culture, gender,
and the literary culture of early-modern Nürnberg.

Wade’s publications include articles and chapters in several areas of Renaissance literature and
culture and digital humanities. With her campus research partners Timothy W. Cole and Myung-Ja K.
Han, she has been the PI for Emblematica Online, a web resource for Emblem Studies, since 2002.
She is also the Editor-in-Chief of Emblematica. Essays in Word and Image. She has earned a number
of research awards, including from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (Senior Research Prize,
Reimar Lüst Award, 2019), Getty Research Institute (2018), Newberry Library, Chicago (2016–2017),
and the Herzog August Bibliothek, Wolfenbüttel, as Senior Fellow of the State of Lower Saxony (2012).
She has been a guest professor at Universität Göttingen and the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und
Medien in Hannover. She has also been a visiting research scholar at the universities of Heidelberg,
Erlangen-Nürnberg, and Stockholm.

Wade is devoting her time at SCAS to completing A Social History of the Renaissance Emblem. This
monographanalyzes the role of the emblem in forging social identities among intellectual elites and advances
new arguments about the role of emblems in producing and connecting networks of learning and friendship.
Her studyanalyzes how a broad set of cultural practices emerged in the 16th century through which emblems
became critical to the fabric of social communication.

This information is accurate as of the academic year 2022-23.