I am a specialist in medieval studies, with an emphasis in Old and Middle English and Anglo-Norman literature. My research and teaching interests include Marie de France, Chaucer, Dante, critical animal studies, postmodern medievalisms, women and gender in the Middle Ages, the Arthurian tradition from its inception to the present day, and history of the English language. My current projects center on the liminality of human/animal identity in the medieval imagination.

Hailing originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, I earned Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in English from Arizona State University and a PhD in medieval literature from the University of Oregon.  Before coming to Western Kentucky University in 2007, I held a position as Assistant Professor of English at Valparaiso University in Indiana.  I am a member of the Medieval Academy, the New Chaucer Society, the Society of Medieval Feminist Scholars, and the Medieval Association of the Midwest, serving for the latter as a member of the Executive Council and as Convener of Conferences. In 2014 I was appointed co-editor of Enarratio, a journal of medieval studies. In addition to teaching at WKU, I also serve as undergraduate literature advisor and as the managing editor of The Ashen Egg, the English department’s annual journal of analytical essays on literature, rhetoric, linguistics, film, and popular culture, which I founded in 2012. In 2015 I was honored to be the recipient of the Potter College and Western Kentucky University teaching awards.


PhD in English with medieval emphasis, University of Oregon (2003)

MA in English, Arizona State University (1999)

BA in English, Arizona State University (1996)

Other Publications

Edited Volumes

(with David Sprunger) Innovative Approaches to Teaching Chaucer. Special issue of Studies in Medieval and Renaissance Teaching 22.1 (20015)

Postscript to the Middle Ages: Teaching Medieval Studies through Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose. Syracuse University Press, 2009


“Fit for a Dog? Food Sharing and the Medieval Human/Animal Divide.” Society & Animals (in press; 7000 words)

“Teaching Genesis B in the British Literature Survey.” The Old English Newsletter 45.3 (2014), http://www.oenewsletter.org/OEN/issue/langdon.php

Pearl: Lines 1205-1208.” The Explicator 71.3 (2013), pp. 221-24

“Dickinson’s [‘Twas like a Maelstrom – with a notch].”  The Explicator 64.2 (2006), pp. 86-89

Book Chapters

“’Dites le mei, si ferez bien’: Fallen Language and Animal Communication in Marie de France’s Bisclavret.” In Animal Languages in the Middle Ages: Representations of Interspecies Communication. Ed. Alison Langdon. Palgrave Macmillan (in press; 7100 words)

“Canines, Communication, and a Crux in Marie de France’s Bisclavret.”  In (Un)Expected Animals in (Un)Expected Places in the Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period. Ed. Genevieve Carlton, Mónica Walker, and Jennifer Westerfield (accepted; 7200 words)

“Naturally, a Postscript: The Name of the Rose as Final Text in a Medieval Literature Survey.” In Postscript to the Middle Ages: Teaching Medieval Studies through The Name of the Rose, pp. 30-39. Ed. Alison Ganze. Syracuse University Press, 2009

Encyclopedia Articles and Book Reviews

Review of Medieval Dogs, by Kathleen Meikle-Walker (British Library, 2013); in The Medieval Review (archived electronically at http://scholarworks.iu.edu/journals/index.php/tmr/article/view/19164/25294), 2015

Review of False Fables and Exemplary Truth in Later Middle English Literature, by Elizabeth Allen (New York: Palgrave/Macmillan, 2005); in The Medieval Review (archived electronically at http://scholarworks.iu.edu/journals/index.php/tmr/article/view/16422/22540), 2007

“Constance.”  Women and Gender in Medieval Europe: An Encyclopedia. Ed. Margaret Schaus. Rutledge, 2006

Review of Arthurian Literature by Women, ed. Alan Lupack and Barbara Tepa Lupak (New York and London: Garland, 1999); in Medieval Feminist Forum 33 (2002), p. 55.

Blog Posts

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