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Dr. Thomas Robisheaux is Professor of History at Duke University. In this interview, he discusses what he describes as the “most exciting and rewarding” teaching experience he has had in his career at Duke: teaching and leading the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Focus Program. The Focus Program is a unique opportunity for first-year Duke undergraduates to build community through cross-disciplinary exploration of a range of topics, from poetry and mathematics to art and technology.  … read more about Building Undergraduate Community in the Focus Program during a Pandemic: An Interview with Dr. Thomas Robisheaux  »

A graduation luncheon and celebration was held in May for the 2022 Medieval and Renaissance Studies graduates with their parents and favorite professors at Café Parizade in Durham. The 2022 class includes Katie Cannon (major), Emma Keaton (minor), Emma Rand (major), Krishna Sinha (minor), Cassandra Stecker (major), and Arial Strode (minor). Like many humanities programs at Duke, Medieval and Renaissance Studies graduates a… read more about 2022 Graduates in Medieval and Renaissance Studies »

Comp Sci + MedRen: An Interview with Leona Lu (Trinity College, class of 2023) Last summer you participated in a research project led by Professor Astrid Giugni (English and Information Science + Studies) called “Reconstructing Utopia in Restoration London.” What was this project about? This was a Data+ project, and students got paid a $5,000 stipend to be involved for six weeks last summer! We applied machine learning algorithms like Latent Dirichlet… read more about Comp Sci + MedRen: An Interview with Leona Lu (Trinity College, class of 2023) »

Patrick Timmis is graduating in August with his Ph.D. in English (defended in May), and he obtained the Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Medieval and Renaissance Studies. His dissertation, “Performing the Protestant State: Preaching and Playing from Marprelate to Milton,” was directed by Professor Sarah Beckwith. Starting in the fall, Dr. Timmis will be a visiting assistant professor at Hillsdale College in Michigan. You’ve just defended your dissertation a month ago. What is your dissertation about? My… read more about Don’t Be an Isolated Genius: An Interview with Patrick Timmis (Ph.D., August 2021) »

Gaby McDonald, a graduating senior, double majored in Biology and Medieval and Renaissance Studies. She opted to graduate with distinction in her Medieval and Renaissance Studies major by completing an honors thesis titled “The Dangerous Popess: Pope Joan, the Exclusion Crisis, and Restoration Theater.” This thesis, which was awarded Highest Distinction, explores the political and gender implications of the myth of Pope Joan in Restoration drama. In fall 2021, Gaby will begin medical school with plans to become a doctor.… read more about Pope Joan and the Top Girls: An interview with Gaby McDonald (Trinity College, class of 2021) »

At this time of collective stasis, when most of us are homebound and getting fidgety, a discussion about medieval pilgrimage might move our imaginations, and possibly even our bodies! On the newest BBC 4 “In Our Time” series — which explores the history of ideas — host Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the idea and experience of Christian pilgrimage in Europe from the 12th to the 15th centuries, which figured so strongly in the imagination of the age. For those able and willing to travel, there were countless destinations… read more about “In Our Time” Interview: Medieval Pilgrimage »

This is the sixth in a series of blog posts on global pandemics written by the staff of Duke Libraries’ International and Area Studies Department. This post is written by Heidi Madden, Ph.D. , Librarian for Western European and Medieval and Renaissance Studies. You have all probably seen them: online reading lists created expressly for the bored souls forced to stay indoors because of the restrictions on movement imposed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  (If not… read more about Boccaccio’s Decameron – The Book of the Moment in a Time of Pandemic »

Caroline A. Bruzelius, Anne Murnick Cogan Professor Emerita of Art and Art History, has been elected a Member of the prestigious American Philosophical Society. Thirty-four Members were elected this year, including others in the humanities such as Elizabeth Alexander, President, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Marin Alsop, Music Director, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra: Lonnie Bunch III, Secretary, Smithsonian Institution; Carla Hayden, Librarian, Library of Congress; David W. Oxtoby, President, American Academy of Arts and… read more about Caroline Bruzelius Elected to the American Philosophical Society »

An educational project looking for up to 6 students to teach how to use digital mapping to understand 17th century London. This summer, Duke’s Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the Rhodes Information Initiative are sponsoring a remote undergraduate summer project, “Mapping Political Uncertainty in Revolutionary London in the 17th Century.” This educational project will teach a group of up to six students how to use digital mapping as a research tool by focusing on the… read more about Summer Student Research Project: (Digital) Mapping Political Uncertainty in Revolutionary London »

Further On . . . from Pedagogy and the Premodern: A Symposium Duke University, March 6–7, 2020   What happened On Friday, March 6th, and Saturday, March 7th, Duke’s Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies presented the symposium “Pedagogy and the Premodern.” Scholars of all different career stages and disciplines across America came together to discuss the particular rewards and challenges of teaching premodern material. Dr. Katie Little, professor of English at the University of… read more about Further On ... from Pedagogy and the Premodern: A Symposium »

The fall 2019 MedRen Focus Program “Science, Mathematics and Harmony in the Renaissance” explored the many dimensions of science, mathematics, and medicine at the historical moment when ancient fields of knowledge were transforming the sciences and the healing arts at the beginning of the modern world. The courses focused in particular on features of science and medicine that make the sciences so fascinating in this period: the sense of wonder that nature evokes, the role of the imagination in scientific and medical… read more about Fall 2019 Focus Program: Science, Mathematics, and Harmony in the Renaissance »

Further On . . . from Undergraduate trip to see Camelot Burning Coal Theatre, December 5, 2019   What happened A solidarity of MedRen students—with Gwen and Lance on their minds?Each semester, the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies organizes a fun outing to a local event to give students firsthand experiences with cultural forms that engage our field of study. On December 5th, a gathering of eleven students, consisting of majors and minors… read more about Further On ... from Undergraduate trip to see Camelot »