About this Fellow
At the core of most of what I do is a curiosity about the psychology of literary response: the ways in which writers struggle to express experiences and acts of imagination, the strategies they use to articulate their understanding of these experiences and imaginative acts, and the codes and conventions that develop between texts and readers to allow communication and understanding to develop and to be manipulated. What the Arabs called 'the imaginative syllogism' drives my interest in medieval poetic (as sharply distinguished from rhetorical) theory as it can be recovered from commentaries and theoretical writings from the twelfth through to the sixteenth centuries.
- J R R Tolkien Professor of English, University of Oxford
Anglo-Saxon literature, especially Ælfric and the Alfredian writings; early medieval commentary on Boethius's Consolation of Philosophy
The history of philosophy, especially c.500 – c.1700, with a focus on Boethius, Anselm and Abelard, but including philosophers up to Leibniz
Western medieval music and its transmission and notation from the origins to the thirteenth century and the development of the Latin liturgy, with an especial focus on ritual
The political, economic, religious and social history of the Mediterranean in the late Middle Ages, especially Italy and Spain; attitudes in late medieval Europe to non-Christian religions and peoples