Welcome to my site! I’ll be using it to post regular updates on my doctoral research. My initial purpose is to provide family and friends with short sketches of what I do, but I also hope this may grow into a record of things done. As such, my focus will be on evidence newly found and provisional interpretations, rather than on finely honed arguments and conclusions. If I do my work right, I’ll be looking at things and asking questions that could interest a scholarly audience, but I’ll be writing with a more general audience in mind. I ask you, gentle reader, to help me in this task by letting me know if my thinking seems abstruse or my writing seems opaque.
For those who aren’t in the know, obtaining a PhD can be a long and grueling process, but it’s also liberating to pursue the leads discovered by one’s own research and meeting others similarly engaged in the pursuit of learning something new. My research focuses on the violence of early medieval slave raiding and trading—a grim topic, indeed, but one that seems to demand attention and may well carry lessons for our own violent world. My work is generously supported by the American-Scandinavian Foundation, the Medieval Academy of America, and Boston College. You can read more about my research (and I’d be grateful if you do!) under “Consuming Violence.”