Professor of History, Chair and the Hildegarde Pilgram Professor of History
Office: Rosenstock Hall, Room 108
- D.Phil, Oxford University
- B.A., Swarthmore College
I’m a medieval historian who teaches courses in ancient history, medieval history, early modern Europe and research methods. My interest in history began at the age of fourteen, when I read Josephine Tey's classic murder mystery “The Daughter of Time,” about Richard III. Until then, I’d never realized that there were controversies and unsolved questions in history. I followed up by reading everything I could find about Richard III, and then I branched out to reading more widely about medieval England, which is pretty much what I’m still doing.
After earning my bachelor’s degree in medieval studies as a transfer student, I taught high school for a couple of years before going overseas for my doctorate. I decided to study in England because I would be in a place with a medieval past, because of the access to medieval archives and sites, and because of the adventure of living in another country and learning about another culture. But I was delighted to be able to come back to my native state of Maryland to teach.
Here at Hood, I enjoy covering a wide range of courses, including Medieval England; Islam and the Crusades; From Celts to Vikings; Women in Medieval Europe; Age of Cathedrals; and Religion, Family, and Society in Reformation Europe. I like designing and teaching interesting new courses like the special topics course “Medieval Warfare” that I offered in Fall 2010; the senior research seminar for history majors is always a favorite course for me, too. Occasionally I teach a Medieval Latin course. I also enjoy working individually with students on independent study projects, departmental honors papers, and the Summer Research Institute. I teach two courses in the M.A. in Humanities program (Women in Medieval Europe and Religion, Family, and Society in Reformation Europe) and work with students in that program as well. I also coordinate the interdisciplinary minor in medieval studies.
In my research and writing, I specialize in the experience of religious women and in 12th- and 13th-century English government, finance and war. I’m currently working on the history and records of Godstow Abbey, a medieval English convent that was located near Oxford, a project for which I received a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship in 2003. My published books and articles include the following.
- “The Foundation Legend of Godstow Abbey: A Holy Woman’s Life in Anglo-Norman Verse.” Forthcoming in Putting Together the Fragments of the Past: Writing Medieval Women’s Lives, ed. Amy Livingstone and Charlotte Newman Goldy (Palgrave).
- Women’s Lives in Medieval Europe: A Sourcebook. Revised edition. Routledge, 2010. (First edition, 1993.)
- “Ela Longespee’s Roll of Benefits: Piety and Reciprocity in the Thirteenth Century,” Traditio: Studies in Ancient and Medieval Thought, History, and Religion, 64 (2009), 1-55.
- Dialogus de Scaccario: The Dialogue of the Exchequer. New edition and translation for Oxford Medieval Texts, Oxford University Press, 2007. With S. D. Church.
- The Great Roll of the Pipe for the Eighth Year of the Reign of King Henry III. The Pipe Roll Society, London, 2005.
- The Crusades: A Reader. With S. J. Allen. Broadview Press, 2003.
- “Besieging Bedford: Military Logistics in 1224,” The Journal of Medieval Military History, 1 (2002): 101-24.
- Medieval England, 1000-1500: A Reader. Broadview Press, 2000.
- “The Reputation of the Sheriff, 1100-1216,” The Haskins Society Journal: Studies in Medieval History, 8 (1996): 91-8.
- The Accession of Henry II in England: Royal Government Restored, 1149-1159. Boydell & Brewer, 1993.