My research concerns the history of Latin Christendom in the Central Middle Ages. I am interested in a number of themes relating to this period, including the theory and practice of historical writing, the transmission and reception of texts, medieval attitudes towards historical truth and the past, and political thought on kingship. My work to date has had a particular focus on the socio-cultural impact of the crusades in Latin Christendom. I joined the department of History as Lecturer in Medieval History in September 2016.

Publications

  1. ‘“Li bons dus de Buillon:” Genre conventions and the depiction of Godfrey of Bouillon in the Chanson d’Antioche and the Chanson de Jérusalem’. Journal of Religious History, Literature and Culture
  2. Godfrey of Bouillon, Duke of Lower Lotharingia, Ruler of Latin Jerusalem, c.1060-1100. Routledge.
  3. Historical Truth and the Miraculous Past: The Use of Oral Evidence in Twelfth-Century Latin Historical Writing on the First Crusade. The English Historical Review 130(543), 263-301.
  4. The Papacy and the Establishment of the Kingdoms of Jerusalem, Sicily and Portugal: Twelfth-Century Papal Political Thought on Incipient Kingship. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History 68(02), 223-259.
  5. The ‘Feast of the Liberation of Jerusalem’: remembering and reconstructing the First Crusade in the Holy City, 1099–1187. Journal of Medieval History 41(4), 409-431.

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Teaching

  • CLH372 Monarchy: Ancient and Medieval

    This thematic module explores the institution of monarchy in the ancient and medieval periods. It will address a number of overlapping questions, and take a concerted comparative approach toward comparing the nature of kingship in both eras. What made a king a king? How did a monarch interact with his (or her) subjects? How was royal power reflected in the palaces and buildings constructed by monarchs? Could queens exercise power in the same way as kings? The module draws on modern theoretical observations about monarchy and explores specific examples from across the ancient and medieval world from the Achaemenid kings of Persia and Alexander the Great, to the Carolingians and the monarchs of the new Latin kingdoms founded during the expansion of Europe after 1000, with examples along the way from Egypt and Rome. Students will develop the skills required to work with a range of primary evidence including royal inscriptions, monuments and art, coins, archaeological remains, political treatises, administrative and legal texts, and manuscript illuminations. Students will also gain expertise in modern scholarship on the subject, engaging with key modern debates on the nature of kingship in the ancient and medieval epochs. Ultimately, the module will give students a framework for assessing monarchy which can be applied productively to monarchy in any period of history.

  • HIH117 Medieval Europe: an introduction

    The module is a basic introduction to the history of Europe c600-c1450, a period usually described as 'Medieval'. It outlines the political and economic structures of the period, and examines the medieval 'world view' by discussing attitudes to life, death and the afterlife. Its first theme, expansion, charts the growth of Europe as a major world power and includes topics such as the crusades against the Muslims and pagans, political and economic growth, and intellectual development in the foundation of the universities. Its second theme, crisis, focuses on the devastating impact of plague, famine and warfare, and the increasing persecution of heretics, lepers, homosexuals, and Jews.

  • HIH2069 The Crusades and the Making of Latin Christendom, 1050-1300

    The purpose of this module will be to examine the crusades by setting them in the context of the rapid expansion of Latin Christendom in the Middle Ages. The module will consider the crusades from the perspective of the Latin Christian society that created and sustained them, focussing on the major campaigns carried out to the Holy Land as well as the crusading expeditions to theatres including Byzantium, the Mediterranean, and within Western Europe. In so doing, it considers the impact of crusading activity at the 'periphery' or Europe - places including the Holy Land, Spain and Scandinavia - as well as at its 'core' - areas including France, Germany and the British Isles. The course will examine how the crusades influenced the military and cultural expansion of Latin Christendom in this era, as well as the impact of the crusading movement on ideas, institutions and developments within the heartlands of Europe.

  • HIH237 The Practice of History

    The purpose of the module is to encourage you to think more deeply about how historians work and, in particular, about how we as historians can locate and use primary historical sources effectively as a means of interpreting and understanding the past. During the module we will learn about the survival of historical evidence, how it is organised and made accessible to historians to undertake their research, and how to effectively locate and interpret it in your studies. We will consider how the process of doing historical research changes over time, in particular with the impact of recent developments like digitization. At the core of the module will be the work you undertake with others in your seminar group using a range of primary sources which your seminar tutor will introduce to you. As part of the module assessment you will also undertake your own primary source based research project using items from these collections. The module is designed strengthen your analytical skills and to help prepare you for the more extensive uses of primary evidence which you will encounter in final year special subjects and dissertation.

  • HIH252 War and Society in the Anglo-Norman World

    This module will examine Anglo-Norman warfare in the two centuries between the Norman Conquest of England in 1066 and the civil war between Henry III and rebel English barons in 1264-65. It will look at the methods of warfare as well as to their impact upon Anglo-Norman society. Themes include comparisons with Anglo-Saxon and `Celtic¿ warfare, rebellion, chivalry and tournaments, the place of the Church and women in Anglo-Norman warfare, and representations of conflict in manuscripts and the Bayeux Tapestry.

  • HIH3300 History Dissertation

    The History dissertation is a free-standing, 40-credit module that runs across both semesters of Level Three. Candidates conduct research upon a subject of their choice, devised in consultation with a member of staff teaching for the degrees in History, and concerning a topic that falls within staff research and teaching interests.

  • HIH3353 Devotion Piety & Power: The First Crusade & the Worlds of Latin Christendom, Byzantium & the Islamic Near East, Part 1

    This Special Subject focuses on the rich corpus of primary source material available for studying the First Crusade (1095-99). By any reckoning, the First Crusade was a seminal event in world history. It inaugurated the crusading movement, and resulted in the establishment of a Latin presence in the Holy Land that lasted for two centuries. The success of the First Crusade astounded medieval observers, and a wealth of sources relating to the expedition were produced by contemporaries and near-contemporaries. Students who take this Special Subject will carry out a close reading of a range of primary sources, including letters sent by popes and participants in the crusade, charters drawn up by crusaders as they prepared to depart, and chronicles. Particular focus will be paid to the anonymous Gesta Francorum (`The Deeds of the Franks¿), the earliest and most influential chronicle account of the First Crusade. We will also examine the depiction of the First Crusade in contemporary Byzantine and Islamic sources.

  • HIH3354 Devotion Piety & Power: The First Crusade & the Worlds of Latin Christendom, Byzantium & the Islamic Near East, Part 2

    This Special Subject focuses on the rich corpus of primary source material available for studying the First Crusade (1095-99). By any reckoning, the First Crusade was a seminal event in world history. It inaugurated the crusading movement, and resulted in the establishment of a Latin presence in the Holy Land that lasted for two centuries. The success of the First Crusade astounded medieval observers, and a wealth of sources relating to the expedition were produced by contemporaries and near-contemporaries. Students who take this Special Subject will carry out a close reading of a range of primary sources, including letters sent by popes and participants in the crusade, charters drawn up by crusaders as they prepared to depart, and chronicles. Particular focus will be paid to the anonymous Gesta Francorum (`The Deeds of the Franks¿), the earliest and most influential chronicle account of the First Crusade. We will also examine the depiction of the First Crusade in contemporary Byzantine and Islamic sources.

  • HIMD00 Medieval Studies Dissertation

    A dissertation of 15,000 - 20,000 words written on a topic decided by the student in consultation with the dissertation supervisor. This represents Part Two of the MA programme in Medieval Studies.

  • HIMM00 Reading Medieval Manuscripts

    Medieval manuscript sources are crucial to our understanding of the Middle Ages. Research across the disciplines of medieval studies is grounded in the study and use of medieval books and documentary sources. This module aims to give students the skills, knowledge and confidence to engage with original manuscript sources of various types, from early Anglo-Saxon Gospel books to medieval chronicles, from illustrated books of hours to critical legal documents. Students will engage with these sources via digital and printed images and full-scale printed facsimiles, learning to recognise and transcribe medieval hands from all periods. Students will be given the chance to read original manuscripts during visits to the West Glamorgan Archive Service (Swansea) and the National Library of Wales (Aberystwyth). This module assumes no prior knowledge of medieval manuscripts, nor any prior knowledge of the medieval languages featured in the manuscript samples, including Latin, Old English and Middle English.

  • HIMM02 Research Folder

    A course designed to help students to identify their dissertation subject, to prepare for it bibliographically, and to plan its research and writing.

  • HIMM04 Introduction to Advanced Medieval Studies 2: Themes and Sources

    This module aims to apply the skills and approaches learned in the module HIMM01: Introduction to Advanced Medieval Studies 1: Skills and Approaches to a range of important themes in Medieval Studies, including gender, identity, laws and customs, spirituality, heritage. The module is interdisciplinary and draws on historical, literary and visual sources. The content of the module will be arranged in 2-weekly blocks, with the first week in each block dedicated to introducing students to the specific theme and the second week being used as a practical application of this knowledge to a source or text.

  • HIMM06 Directed Reading in Medieval Studies

    Under the guidance of an expert supervisor, students analyse developments in research and either historiography or literary criticism, relating to a topic in Medieval Studies which they choose from a wide range of options.

Supervision

  • The Way of the Dragon: Wilfred Wooller, Glamorgan County Cricket Club and the modernisation of cricket, 1958 to 1977. (awarded 2019)

    Student name:
    MA
    Other supervisor: Prof Martin Johnes

Career History

Start Date End Date Position Held Location
2016 Present Programme director for BA Swansea University