William "Rusty" Jones

Associate Professor of English

Chair, Murray Shakespeare Festival

"I am privileged to teach some of the finest literature in the English language. Studying Shakespeare's works has afforded me many valuable insights into the nuances of the human condition, while my exploration of satire continues to demonstrate to me the power of language and ideas to provoke real social change; I am pleased to have the opportunity to share such discoveries with my students. I try to design all of my classes with an eye towards producing original and informed thinkers able to call upon the knowledge, resources, and self-confidence gained during their studies. Ultimately, my goal is to guide students to intellectual independence and personal success."

William "Rusty" Jones



University of California, Santa Cruz 


University of California, Santa Cruz 

Occidental College, Los Angeles

Highlighted Publications

"'Say They Are Saints Although That Saints They Show Not': John Weever's 1599 Epigrams to Marston, Jonson, and Shakespeare." The Huntington Library Quarterly.73.1 (Spring 2010): 83-98.  

"The Bishops' Ban of 1599 and the Ideology of English Satire." Literature Compass (on-line journal). 7.5 (2010): 332-346.

"'People Have to Watch What They Say': What Horace, Juvenal, and 9/11 Can Tell Us About Satire and History." Helios. 36.1 (Spring 2009): 27-53.

"Satire." New entry for The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics. Ed. Roland Greene (forthcoming in June 2012).

Areas of Specialization

Classical Drama

English Poetry and Drama, 1500-1720

Genre Theory

Latin Poetry

Satire (classical through modern, emphasis on Renaissance and Restoration)


Theater History


Chair, Murray Shakespeare Festival

Courses Taught


Comedy and Satire

British Literature to 1760

History of the English Language

The Works of Edmund Spenser

Critical Reading, Writing, and Inquiry

Awards and Distinctions 

CHFA Award for Teaching Excellence, Murray State University, 2013

Mayers Fellow, Huntington Library, San Marino, CA

Professional Memberships and Affiliations 

Modern Language Association

Renaissance Society of America

Screen Actors Guild 

Shakespeare Association of America

South Atlantic Modern Language Association


Dr. William "Rusty" Jones
7B-1 Faculty Hall

Murray State University

Murray KY 42071-3341


In the Media

At the WKMS studios, Dr. Cobb and Dr. Rusty Jones talk about some of the more interesting elements of Shakespeare's comedy Twelfth Night and John Webster's gripping tragedy The Duchess of Malfi in this segment called "Werewolves, Cross-Dressing and a Singing Fool."

The bard or not the bard?

In a movie opening this fall titled Anonymous, director Roland Emmerich takes on a theory that Shakespeare did not, in fact, write the works that have endured for four centuries. Listen to Dr. Jones discuss fact versus Hollywood in this interview with local NPR member station WKMS.