Category Archives: member news

Member Publication: Early English Queens, 850-1000

Member Matthew Firth has recently published a monograph with Routledge entitled Early English Queens, 850-1000: Potestas Reginae.

The book offers a comprehensive, biography-led examination of queenship in England between 850 and 1000, tracing the development of the queen’s role from bed companion to institutional office.

The period 850–1000 is critical to the development of English queenship. In the aftermath of viking invasion, the kings of Wessex expanded their hegemony over neighbouring regions, gradually establishing themselves as the kings of England. Parallel to this broad narrative of political change is the lesser-known story, told in this book, of the royal women who took part in it. The lives of three remarkable women – Æthelflæd, Lady of the Mercians, and the West Saxon consorts Eadgifu and Ælfthryth – are central to the story, here retold through the careful analysis and reappraisal of source documents. These biographies set the stage for detailed study of the agency and advocacy of all women who held queenly office in England between 850 and 1000, as well as their legacies and reception by later generations.

Early English Queens, 850–1000 gives important insights into the role women played in the first 150 years of the West Saxon dynasty, offering a compelling narrative that will appeal to students and scholars of early medieval England and royal studies.

The book is available in ebook, softcover and hardcover. Available in all good bookstores, it is currently 20% off at Routledge (ebook is available for immediate download, physical books ship after 23 April).

Winners of the ANZAMEMS Publication Prizes for 2023 and 2024 announced!

It is with great pleasure, ANZAMEMS can announce the winners of the Association’s Publication Prizes for 2023 and 2024!

Congratulations to all the Prize winners, and thank you to all those who took the time to enter. The judges have reported back that the quality of all the publications was extremely high, which made their jobs very difficult!

Thank you to the judges of each prize: we greatly appreciate your service to the Association.

Finally, a big thank you to the chair of the ANZAMEMS Prizes sub-committee, Prof Andrew Brown, who brilliantly co-ordinated the judging for all the Prizes!

2023 Philippa Maddern ECR Publication Prize winner:

Dr Jessica O’Leary (Australian Catholic University) for:

“The Uprooting of Indigenous Women’s Horticultural Practices in Brazil, 1500–1650”, in Past and Present 262.1 (2024) [published online in March 2023]:

2023 Patricia Crawford Postgraduate Publication Prize winner:

Dr Georgina Pitt (The University of Western Australia) for

“Alfredian military reform: the materialization of ideology and the social practice of garrisoning,” in Early Medieval Europe 30.3 (2022) :

2023 Anne M. Scott Parergon Journal Prize winner:

Dr Kirk Essary (The University of Western Australia) for

“‘The Bloody Sweat of Our Minds’: (Dis)embodied Emotions in Erasmus, More, and Calvin,” in Parergon 38.1 (2021):

2024 Constant Mews Early Career Publication Prize winner

Catherine Rosbrook (Ghent University) for

“Ascetic Instruction in the Life of John of Gorze”, in Journal of Medieval History 49.4 (2023):

Member Publication: Painters and Sitters in Early Seventeenth-century Rome: Portraits of the Soul

Member Esther Theiler has recently published a monograph with Brepols entitled Painters and Sitters in Early Seventeenth-century Rome: Portraits of the Soul.

Significant innovations in portraiture occurred during the transitional period from the end of the sixteenth-century to the early seventeenth-century in Rome. Portraits by Annibale Carracci, Valentin de Boulogne, Anthony van Dyck, Simon Vouet and Gianlorenzo Bernini display a loosening of formality and a trend towards movement. These artists produced a portrait type that was more inclusive of the viewer, more communicative, more revealing of a private face. The portraits in this study were less likely to celebrate achievements, family or social standing, titles, rank or station. Instead they portray individuals who exist apart from their professional personae. They reveal unique and characteristic traits of their subjects captured at a particular moment in time. They used subtle affetti, painting technique and colour to express mood and atmosphere and evoke the presence of the sitter. The sitters include poets, courtiers, buffoons and the artists themselves, and each composition is attentive to the thoughts, emotions and imaginative life of the individuals.

Painters and Sitters in Early Seventeenth-century Rome is available for purchase through Brepols.

Member Publication: Elite Women and the Italian Wars, 1494–1559

Susan Broomhall and Carolyn James have recently published a volume with the Cambridge Elements series: Elite Women and the Italian Wars, 1494–1559.

The volume analyses the critical importance of elite women to the conflict conventionally known as the Italian Wars that engulfed much of Europe and the Mediterranean between 1494 and 1559. Through its considered attention to the interventions of women connected to imperial, royal and princely dynasties, the authors show the breadth and depth of the opportunities, roles, impact, and influence that certain women had to shape the course of the conflict in both wartime activities and in peace-making. The work thus expands the ways in which the authors can think about women’s participation in war and politics. It makes use of a wide range of sources such as literature, art and material culture, as well as more conventional text forms. Women’s voices and actions are prioritized in making sense of evidence and claims about their activities.

Elite Women and the Italian Wars is available for free download for the next two weeks.

Member Publication: Rethinking Medieval and Renaissance Political Thought

Chris Jones and Takashi Shogimen have recently published an edited collection with Routledge, Rethinking Medieval and Renaissance Political Thought: Historiographical Problems, Fresh Interpretations, New Debates. The book includes contributions from ANZAMEMS members Clare Monagle, Constant Mews, Jason Taliadoros and others.

This collection of essays showcases historiographical problems, fresh interpretations, and new debates in medieval and Renaissance history and political thought.

Recent scholarship on medieval and Renaissance political thought is witness to tectonic movements. These involve quiet, yet considerable, re-evaluations of key thinkers such as Thomas Aquinas and Machiavelli, as well as the string of lesser known “political thinkers” who wrote in western Europe between Late Antiquity and the Reformation. Taking stock of thirty years of developments, this volume demonstrates the contemporary vibrancy of the history of medieval and Renaissance political thought. By both celebrating and challenging the perspectives of a generation of scholars, notably Cary J. Nederman, it offers refreshing new assessments.

The book re-introduces the history of western political thought in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to the wider disciplines of History and Political Science. Recent historiographical debates have revolutionized discussion of whether or not there was an “Aristotelian revolution” in the thirteenth century. Thinkers such as Machiavelli and Marsilius of Padua are read in new ways; less well-known texts, such as the Irish On the Twelve Abuses of the Age, offer new perspectives. Further, the collection argues that medieval political ideas contain important lessons for the study of concepts of contemporary interest such as toleration.

ANZAMEMS members receive a 20% discount until 31 December using the code AFL03 at

Member Publication: Addressing Injustice in the Medieval Body Politic

Long-standing ANZAMEMS members Constant Mews and Kathleen Neal have just had their edited collection, Addressing Injustice in the Medieval Body Politic, published with Amsterdam University Press.

Justice and injustice were subjects of ongoing debate in medieval Europe. Received classical and biblical models both influenced how these qualities of moral and political life were perceived, discussed and acted upon. Important among these influences was the anonymous seventh-century Irish text, On The Twelve Abuses of the Age, a biblically-inspired discussion of the moral duties particular to each sector of society. This volume probes its long influence, and its interaction with the revival of classical ideas. By bringing together scholars of political thought and practice, in lay and religious contexts spanning the seventh to fourteenth centuries, this volume crosses boundaries of periodisation, discipline and approach to reflect upon the medieval evolution of concepts of injustice and means of redress. Contributions address how ideas about justice and injustice were discussed among scholars and theologians, and how those ideas were translated into action through complaint and advice throughout the medieval period.

CONSTANT J. MEWS is Emeritus Professor and formerly Director of the Centre for Religious Studies, Monash University (Australia). He specializes in the religious and intellectual history of Europe in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, on which he has published widely, but is also completing Aidan Breen’s edition of DDAS for the Corpus Christianorum.

KATHLEEN B. NEAL is Senior Lecturer in History and Director of the Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at Monash University (Australia). She specializes in later-medieval political culture and communication. Her monograph The Letters of Edward I: Political Communication in the Thirteenth Century was published by Boydell Press in 2021.

Order your copy of Addressing Injustice in the Medieval Body Politic here!

2023 ANZAMEMS Early Career Fellows Announced

In 2023 ANZAMEMS will fund three Early Career Fellowships to support the development of early career researchers in pursuing advanced research and publication in medieval studies, early modern studies, and medievalism.

We are very excited to announce the following scholars have been appointed ANZAMEMS Early Career Fellows for 2023.

  • Dr Matthew Firth (Flinders University): ‘Medieval Life Writing and the Construction of Reputation’
  • Dr Roberta Kwan (Macquarie University/University of Sydney): ‘Ancient Ethic for Uncertain Times: Reimagining Neighbourliness with Shakespeare’
  • Dr Amy Sinclair (The University of Melbourne/Deakin University): ‘Risk and Dissimulation in Early Modern Feminism’

Member Publication: The Psychology of Avicenna – An English Version of the Liber de Anima

ANZAMEMS member Simon Kemp is pleased to announce the publication of The Psychology of Avicenna. In it, he presents a new translation of Avicenna’s Liber de Anima. The text was enormously influential on medieval thinking about psychology, and many of the ideas it contains have emerged or re-emerged in psychological research over the last fifty years.

The book will normally cost US $0.99 but is presently offered on AMAZON as a free download.