Having collected degrees at University of Illinois, University of Minnesota, and the Ohio State University, I am pleased to come home to the Big 10 at Penn State.
With degrees in History to my credit in addition to the PhD in literature, I use historicism to inflect my study of English medieval literature. However English medieval literature wasn’t always in English, and so I study English literature written in French and Latin as well. The law was trilingual also, and I explore this in my first book, Maintenance, Meed, and Marriage in Medieval English Literature as well as my forthcoming book concerning information technology, Medieval Hackers. I showcase my background in codicology and Book History in Medieval Hackers and especially in my newest book, The Courtly and Commercial Art of the Wycliffite Bible. In both of these I use close examination of large collections of medieval manuscripts to provide evidence about medieval English culture.
I love the dramatic potential of the classroom, and attempt to link familiar elements of pop culture with premodern literature, so that my students are not coming into classes where arcane information will be revealed, but where they will learn to look at what they already know in a new way, and develop and strengthen skills both old and new.
When I am not in class or working on my research, I can often be found lurking in coffeeshops. I can almost always be found online.
Media Consultations: medieval culture, codicology, Book History
Medieval Hackers. New York: Punctum Books, 2015.
The Courtly and Commercial Art of the Wycliffite Bible. Medieval Church Studies. Turnhout: Brepols, 2014.
Maintenance, Meed, and Marriage in Medieval English Literature. Palgrave: New York, 2009.
(Forthcoming), “Cosmopolitan Artists, Florentine Initials, and the Wycliffite Bible,” Europe After Wyclif: Religious Controversy in the Later Middle Ages, ed. Michael Van Dussen and Patrick Hornbeck II. New York: Fordham University Press, 2016.
“A London Legal Miscellany, Popular Law, and Medieval Print Culture,” Truth and
Tales: Cultural Mobility and Medieval Media, ed. Nicholas Watson and Fiona Somerset.
Interventions: New Studies in Medieval Culture. Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 2015,
“Reintroducing the English Books of Hours, or ‘English Primers,’” Speculum 89 (2014): 693-723
“Prosopography of the Book and the Politics of Legal Language in Late Medieval England,” Journal of British Studies 53 (2014): 565-87
“Retaining Men (and a Retaining Woman) in Piers Plowman,” Yearbook of Langland Studies 20 (2006): 191-214.
“Maintaining Love Through Accord in the Tale of Melibee,” The Chaucer Review 39 (2004): 165-176.
“Retaining a Court of Chancery in Piers Plowman,” Yearbook of Langland Studies 17 (2003):175-189.
(Header image is London, British Library, MS Harley 4999, f. 180r.)