Summary: I am an IMS PhD Student (beginning October 2016) pursuing multidisciplinary research that intersects History, English, and Archaeology. I am also the IMS Promotions and Communications Intern.
I am a PhD research student focusing on English anchorites, the cells they lived in, and their varied experiences through an interdisciplinary project combining historical and archaeological approaches and diverse source materials, both archaeological and textual. My thesis is titled, 'Anchorites in Shropshire: An Archaeological and Literary Analysis of the Anchoritic Vocation', and my supervisors are Emilia Jamroziak (Prof. of Medieval Religious History at Leeds and Director of the IMS) and Catherine Batt (Senior Lecturer in Medieval Literature at Leeds). My main research questions include:
- What can archaeological remains of anchorholds, particularly in Shropshire, indicate about anchoritic experience?
- How do the archaeological record and the documentary and literary record inform each other?
- What does this comprehensive analysis offer in terms of new ways to consider the anchoritic vocation and the lived experience of anchorites?
I earned my BA in May 2014 from Lycoming College in Williamsport, PA (USA), where I majored in Archaeology and Medieval Studies and minored in Creative Writing. After this I completed my MA in Medieval Archaeology in September 2015 at the University of Sheffield in Sheffield, England, where I was supervised by Hugh Willmott (Senior Lecturer in European Historical Archaeology at Sheffield). Here at the University of Leeds I am being funded through an Arts Cross Disciplinary Research Scholarship, supported jointly by the School of History and the School of English.
In addition to my research, I am the IMS Promotions and Communications Intern for this year. In this capacity I maintain the IMS email list, publicize medieval events at Leeds as well as other universities, and also keep those interested in the IMS updated about its activities through regular newsletters.