Graduate Students

Our graduate students bring to the Medieval Studies Program a wide range of interests from departments across the College of Letters and Sciences. For some of their accomplishments please visit graduate fellowships, prizes, awards, and publications.

Jess Bailey
Art History

Jess Genevieve Bailey (2015) studies Northern European medieval art with a focus on image theory and feminist histories of the body. Her work engages pre-modern and transitional 16th century visual and material negotiation of abjection, gendered violence, and trauma. Jess’s dissertation is the recipient of funding through a consolidator grant from the European Research Council under the direction of Professor Beate Fricke at the University of Bern, Switzerland.

Precarious Lines: Drawing the Abject Body

Jasmin Miller
Department of English


I work on religious prose (Middle English and Latin) in late medieval England, especially the English mystics, and its lay reception. I also have interests in late medieval English religious vocation and devotional practices, particularly contemplation and reading and their intersection with medieval literary theory.

Email: jasminmiller [at] berkeley [dot] edu


Molly Bronstein
Department of Comparative Literature

I focus on vernacular reinterpretations of the Classics in the late Middle Ages, namely in: French, English, and Italian.  In particular I am interested Ovid's reception, and the transmission of Trojan War narratives.

molly [dot] bronstein [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Jon Cho-Polizzi
Department of German
Program in Folklore

My research investigates the symbolic function of early vernacular literature and its role in larger community forming rituals in Late Medieval and Early Modern urban spaces.

jcpolizzi [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Amy Clark
Department of English

My current research includes projects on Old English poetic syntax, Anglo-Saxon and Latinate riddle traditions, and reiteration or itineraria as a literary device.

amy [dot] w [dot] clark [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Fred Dulson
Department of French

I work primarily on French literature of the High Middle Ages, with special focus on the formal dynamics of romance and the development of vernacular historiography. My work also concerns the place of the medieval within modern intellectual history and critical theory. 

fdulson [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Andrew Griebeler
History of Art Department

Dissertation research focuses on the production and use of illustrated Greek herbals in late antiquity and the Middle Ages. Research interests include material and visual culture of the medieval Mediterranean, manuscript studies, medieval science and image theory.

agriebeler [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Mahel Hamroun
Department of History

I am interested in the intersection of magic and folk tradition with medieval perceptions of identity, particularly around the time of Christianization in Northern Europe. 

mhamroun [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Bernardo Hinojosa
Department of English

I study the literature and religious thought of Late Medieval and Reformation England, with particular interests in codicology, the history of information, and Piers Plowman.

b [dot] hinojosa [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Marian Homans-Turnbull
Department of English

I study Middle English and related literatures, including French, Latin, and Old Norse. I'm also interested in medieval constructions of natural forces, geographies, territory, and property, and in the operations of literary setting.

marianhomansturnbull [at] gmail [dot] com
Brock Imel
Program in Romance Languages and Literatures
Department of French

My main interests center around historical (socio)linguistics, the tense-aspect-mood system, and the diachronic relationship between the oral and written codes. I am presently investigating historical sociolinguistic methodology and its application to a variety of genres in medieval early Romance vernaculars, with a focus on French, Occitan, and Northern Italian. 

baimel [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Sara Ann Knutson
Department of Scandinavian

Sara Ann is interested in the movement and cross-cultural encounters of the Scandinavian diaspora based on its literature, material culture, and traces in landscapes. Her academic interests include mobility and the movement of people over time and space, the influence of cross-cultural encounters on religious mentalities, cultural identity, and memory, materiality, and digital methods in history.

sara_knutson [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Michelle Lee
Department of French

My topics of interest are medieval literature, multicultural studies, feminism, queer theory, and translation. My favourite authors are Marie de France, Thomas of Britain and Béroul, and the anonymous poets of Roman d’Enéas and Roman de Silence.

Jennifer A. Lorden
Department of English

I study the literature of early medieval England. My recent work focuses on poetry and aesthetics, hagiography, devotion, and affect.

jlorden [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Matthew Mason
Department of Italian Studies

My principle fields of research comprise Trecento Italian vernacular poetry and prose; medieval and (proto)humanistic Latin literature; relations between literary form, narratology, and history; reception of classical authors; Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio.

mlmason [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Peter Michelli
Department of History

I am interested the political and social history of the Italian peninsula during the central Middle Ages, especially relating to the Church in the Kingdom of Sicily under Emperor Frederick II. I also enjoy studying Medieval Latin and Italian literature. 

pm15 [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Lukas Ovrom
Department of French

Medieval and early modern French literature; Old French romance; farce theatre; codicology and related disciplines; literary theory and translation.

Joel Pattison
Department of History

I'm interested in Latin and Arabic legal and notarial evidence for the presence of Italian merchant colonies in the Islamic world during the later middle ages, and particularly in questions of trade and legal disputes between Muslims and Christians.  My dissertation will examine Genoese merchant communities in North Africa between the 12th and 14th centuries. 

Shokoofeh Rajabzadeh
Department of English

Middle English

srajabzadeh [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Landon Reitz
Department of German

My primary research interest is late medieval German theological literature especially mystical thought, writings, and practice.

reitzls [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Michelle Ripplinger
Department of English

I study Middle English poetry and devotional literature from fourteenth- and fifteenth-century England, with particular interest in the history of reading, medieval literary thought, and the places of women as readers and subjects of writing. 

ripplinger [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Andrew Sears
History of Art Department

Gothic art and architecture; cults of saints, hagiography, relics and reliquaries; late medieval urbanism; collecting culture.

asears [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Max Stevenson
Department of English

I study Old English and Anglo-Latin literatures, with a special interest in manuscript studies and liturgical texts.

Spencer Strub
Department of English

My interests include Middle English poetry and prose, devotional writing, the history of the affects, and book history. My research traces how the English poets of the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries drew on and represented the so-called “sins of the tongue,” a religious discourse on the regulation of speech.

Dissertation title:  Publishing before Print: The Sins of the Tongue and the Public of Middle English Literature
spencer [dot] strub [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Jenny Tan
Department of Comparative Literature

I study French Arthurian romance with a particular interest in narrative theory and genre studies. My current work focuses on the interface between French and Welsh Arthurian literature.

jenny_tan [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Rosie Taylor

Rosie’s love of the medieval period began in childhood and never left. Starting in 2008 she spent two summers on an archaeological dig in Iceland, where she became hooked on Viking-Age Scandinavia. She earned her B.A. in Medieval Studies from Smith College in 2012 with a focus on Old English language and Old Norse literature. In 2013 she spent six months in Sweden studying Swedish and traveling Scandinavia. Her primary interests include the Viking voyages to the Middle East, particularly cross-cultural influence and the balance of trade and violence, and the development of medieval vernacular grammar.

Tiffany White
Department of Scandinavian

My main focus is on the early Church in Iceland. I am particularly interested in Old Icelandic adaptations of continental saints' lives. Additional interests include Middle High German and Middle Dutch literary influence in Iceland, ecocriticism, vernacular theology, the indigenous Icelandic romances, and nationalism in Iceland.

Evan Wilson
Department of English

I study primarily Old English and Anglo-Latin literature. I’m especially interested in vernacular traditions of poetic form and historical interpretation.

e [dot] r [dot] wilson [at] berkeley [dot] edu
Melissa Winters
Department of German

Melissa Winters is a PhD candidate in German and Medieval Studies. She arrived in her current field by way of musicology: prior to beginning the doctoral program in German literature at UC Berkeley, she earned the MA and MPhil in music theory at Yale University and the BA in music at Mills College. Her dissertation examines Wagner’s reception of the courtly literary tradition of the thirteenth century. 

“Building the Hall of Song: Richard Wagner and the Middle High German Blütezeit”