Medieval History

Medieval History


Interviews with scholars of medieval history about their new books.

Tzafrir Barzilay, "Poisoned Wells: Accusations, Persecution, and Minorities in Medieval Europe, 1321-1422" (U Pennsylvania Press, 2022)

April 8, 2024

Poisoned Wells

Tzafrir Barzilay
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

Between 1348 and 1350, Jews throughout Europe were accused of having caused the spread of the Black Death by poisoning the wells from which the entire…

Elizabeth Coggeshall, "On Amistà: Negotiating Friendship in Dante’s Italy" (U Toronto Press, 2023)

April 8, 2024

On Amistà

Elizabeth Coggeshall
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Although we often think of friendship today as an indisputable value of human social life, for thinkers and writers across late mediaeval Christian so…

Anthony Kaldellis, "The New Roman Empire: A History of Byzantium" (Oxford UP, 2024)

April 7, 2024

The New Roman Empire

Anthony Kaldellis
Hosted by Evan Zarkadas

In recent decades, the study of the Eastern Roman Empire, also known as Byzantium, has been revolutionized by new approaches and more sophisticated mo…

Translating a Śrī Vidyā Text: The Cidvilāsastava of Amṛtānanda

April 5, 2024

Translating a Śrī Vidyā Text

Brian Campbell
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

The Cidvilāsastava of Amṛtānanda (fl. c. 1325-1375) one of the most comprehensive treatments of the esoteric contemplation of ritual found within the …

Paola Tartakoff, "Between Christian and Jew: Conversion and Inquisition in the Crown of Aragon, 1250-1391" (U Pennsylvania Press, 2012)

April 2, 2024

Between Christian and Jew

Paola Tartakoff
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

In 1341 in Aragon, a Jewish convert to Christianity was sentenced to death, only to be pulled from the burning stake and into a formal religious inter…

William Bain, "Political Theology of International Order" (Oxford UP, 2020)

March 26, 2024

Political Theology of International Order

William Bain

Is contemporary international order truly a secular arrangement? Theorists of international relations typically adhere to a narrative that portrays th…

Shakuntala Gawde, "Narrative Analysis of Bhagavata Purana: Selected Episodes from the Tenth Skandha" (Dev Publishers, 2023)

March 21, 2024

Narrative Analysis of Bhagavata Purana

Shakuntala Gawde
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

Shakuntala Gawde's book Narrative Analysis of Bhagavata Purana: Selected Episodes from the Tenth Skandha (Dev Publishers, 2023) presents an analytical…

Ada Maria Kuskowski, "Vernacular Law; Writing and the Reinvention of Customary Law in Medieval France" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

March 16, 2024

Vernacular Law

Ada Maria Kuskowski
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Custom was fundamental to mediaeval legal practice. Whether in a property dispute or a trial for murder, the aggrieved and accused would go to lay cou…

Eva De Clercq, ed. and trans., "The Life of Padma" (Harvard UP, 2023)

March 15, 2024

The Life of Padma, Volume 2

Eva De Clercq, ed. and trans.
Hosted by Kshitij Jain

The Life of Padma, or the Paümacariu, is a richly expressive Jain retelling in the Apabhramsha language of the famous Ramayana tale. It was written by…

Michael Johnston, "The Middle English Book: Scribes and Readers, 1350-1500" (Oxford UP, 2023)

February 24, 2024

The Middle English Book

Michael Johnston

Michael Johnston's The Middle English Book: Scribes and Readers, 1350-1500 (Oxford UP, 2023) addresses a series of questions about the copying and cir…

Ruth Ahnert and Sebastian E. Ahnert, "Tudor Networks of Power" (Oxford UP, 2023)

February 21, 2024

Tudor Networks of Power

Ruth Ahnert and Sebastian E. Ahnert
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

Tudor Networks of Power (Oxford University Press, 2023) by Dr. Ruth Ahnert & Dr. Sebastian Ahnert is the product of a groundbreaking collaboration bet…

Adam Bursi, "Traces of the Prophets: Relics and Sacred Spaces in Early Islam" (Edinburgh UP, 2024)

February 17, 2024

Traces of the Prophets

Adam Bursi
Hosted by Shobhana Xavier

Adam Bursi’s Traces of the Prophets: Relics and Sacred Spaces in Early Islam (Edinburg University Press, 2024) uses writings by early Muslims to map a…

Laura Flannigan, "Royal Justice and the Making of the Tudor Commonwealth, 1485–1547" (Cambridge UP, 2023)

February 13, 2024

Royal Justice and the Making of the Tudor Commonwealth, 1485–1547

Laura Flannigan
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

The dawn of the Tudor regime is one of most recognisable periods of English history. Yet the focus on its monarchs' private lives and ministers' const…

Anthony Kaldellis, "Romanland: Ethnicity and Empire in Byzantium" (Harvard UP, 2019)

February 13, 2024


Anthony Kaldellis
Hosted by Mark Klobas

Though commonly used today to identify a polity that lasted for over a millennium, the label “Byzantine empire” is an anachronism imposed by more rece…

Beatrice Heuser, "War: A Genealogy of Western Ideas and Practices" (Oxford UP, 2022)

February 3, 2024


Beatrice Heuser

War is often thought of mainly the concern of professional soldiers and maybe politicians as well. However, philosophers and theorists of varying type…

Stephen Harris, "Buddhist Ethics and the Bodhisattva Path: Santideva on Virtue and Well-Being" (Bloomsbury, 2023)

January 26, 2024

Buddhist Ethics and the Bodhisattva Path

Stephen Harris

Santideva's 8th-century Mahayana Buddhist classic, "The Guide to the Practices of Awakening" (Bodhicaryavatara), has been a source of philosophical in…

Nicholas Morton, "The Crusader States and their Neighbours: A Military History, 1099-1187" (Oxford UP, 2020)

January 22, 2024

The Crusader States and their Neighbours

Nicholas Morton
Hosted by Maggie Freeman

Nicholas Morton’s The Crusader States and their Neighbours: A Military History, 1099-1187 (Oxford UP, 2020) explores the military history of the medie…

Brian Gastle et al., "The Lover's Confession: A Translation of John Gower's Confessio Amantis" (Medieval Institute Press, 2023)

January 21, 2024

The Lover's Confession

Brian Gastle, Catherine Carter, and Andrew Galloway
Hosted by Nikki Roulo

John Gower’s "Confessio Amantis" ("The Lover’s Confession") is one of the most important English works of the fourteenth century. Within its frame of …

Karen C. Pinto, "Medieval Islamic Maps: An Exploration" (U Chicago Press, 2016)

January 16, 2024

Medieval Islamic Maps

Karen C. Pinto
Hosted by Caleb Zakarin

The history of Islamic mapping is one of the new frontiers in the history of cartography. Medieval Islamic Maps: An Exploration (University of Chicago…

Elizabeth Eva Leach, "Medieval Sex Lives: The Sounds of Courtly Intimacy on the Francophone Borders" (Cornell UP, 2023)

January 6, 2024

Medieval Sex Lives

Elizabeth Eva Leach
Hosted by Dave O'Brien

How was music important to medieval society? In Medieval Sex Lives: The Sounds of Courtly Intimacy on the Francophone Borders (Cornell UP, 2023), Prof…