Visiting Professors

For over thirty years, the Medieval Studies Program has hosted the Charles A. Owen, Jr. Visiting Professor to teach an intensive graduate seminar during the month of September. Below is a list of recent Visiting Professors and their courses.

Charles A. Owen, Jr. Visiting Professor for the Fall 2019

The Medieval Studies program is pleased to announce the Charles A. Owen, Jr. Visiting Professor for the Fall 2019 semester: Leila K. Norako, University of Washington – “Crusades Literature: Medieval and Modern”

This graduate seminar will focus on the representation of the crusades in medieval and contemporary literature and culture. Our central goal will be to examine both medieval and post 9/11 reimaginings of the historical crusades as a way of gauging how cultures, at times of perceived precarity, tend to produce fictional works that meditate upon and fuel particular sets of aspirations, nostalgias, anxieties, and xenophobias. We will spend ample time examining crusading literature written in late Medieval England (c. 1300-1450), and these texts will include shorter vernacular romances (like Sir Isumbras and Sir Gowther) but also longer works such as the romance Richard Coer de Lyon and The Siege of Jerusalem. Students will also be introduced to accounts of the historical crusades, crusades sermons, recovery treatises, and travel literature in order to get a clear sense of how these romances reflect their cultural surroundings. The modern works we will examine will include the director’s cut of Kingdom of Heaven, but also the film and graphic novel 300, Frank Miller’s Holy Terror, and the film American Sniper (in addition to a wide array of shorter contemporary works that evoke the concept of crusading). Students will be evaluated on the basis of their preparedness and in-class participation, and will also be asked to lead discussion during one of our class meetings and write a seminar paper (due in early December) on a topic and text of their choosing.

Former Visiting Professors

2018: Kathleen E. Kennedy, Pennsylvania State University, Brandywine “The Book: From Cuneiform to Cyberspace”

2017: Turn to Global Medieval StudiesSeries of workshops throughout the academic year

2016: Francis Gingras, Université de Montréal, “Anglo-Norman Literature: From the Channel to the Mediterranean”

2015: Dyan Elliott, Northwestern University, “The Medieval Church as School for Scandal”

2014: Henrike Lähnemann, School of Modern Languages, Newcastle University, “The Nuns’ Manuscripts”

2013: Barbara Bombi, School of History, University of Kent, “The Medieval Papacy”

2012: Julia Boffey, Queen Mary, University of London, “Being an Author, 1450-1550”

2011: Simon Horobin, University of Oxford, “Reading the Medieval Book”

2010: Paul Russell, University of Cambridge, “The Learned Contexts of Literature in Medieval Ireland and Wales”

2009: Daniel Wakelin, University of Cambridge, “The Implications of Material Texts”

2008: Henrietta Leyser, University of Oxford, “Piety and Place in England 1000-1300”

2007: Jocelyn Wogan-Browne, University of York, “The French of England: Documentary and Literary Cultures”

2006: Robert Mills, King’s College, University of London, “The Body of the Medieval Friend”

2005: Diane Watt, University of Wales, “Women and Writing in the Middle Ages”

2004: Miri Rubin, Queen Mary, University of London, “Mary – An Intimate History of Christian Culture”

2003: James Simpson, University of Cambridge, “Suffering History: Exemplary Lives in Medieval Literature”

2002: Donald Scragg, University of Manchester, “The Editing of Old English”

2001: Derek Pearsall, Harvard University, “Text and Image, 1200-1500”

2000: Maire Ni Mhaonaigh, University of Cambridge, “Medieval Irish Narrative Literature”

1999: Andy Orchard, University of Cambridge, “Riddle Traditions of Early England”

1998: Miri Rubin, University of Oxford, “Medieval Bodies”

1997: James Simpson, University of Cambridge, “Lydgate and His Circle”

1996: Miri Rubin, University of Oxford, “Reading Medieval Voices”

1995: Piero Boitani, University of Rome, “Late Medieval Narrative: Italian to English” (class held Spring 1996)

1994: Douglas Gray, University of Oxfrod, “Word and Image in Medieval Literature”

1993: David Luscombe, University of Sheffield, “Abelard”

1992: Peter Brown, Princeton Universtiy, “Literature and History”

1991: Helen Cooper, University of Oxford, “Images of Women in Medieval Literature”

1990: Joerg Fichte, University of Tübingen, “The Middle English Arthurian Verse Romance”