About the Project

The Medievalism in Australian Cultural Memory project provides the first long-range analysis of Australian cultural responses to the medieval period, and the first comparative study of Australia's relationship with international medievalism. It examines how Australians have used references to the medieval past, both favourable and hostile, to articulate our complex relations to European tradition and our aspirations to a distinctive national culture.

This database aims to facilitate research by providing access to an abundance of digital resources in a user-friendly environment. The materials on this database have been organised into four major categories which cover a variety of original approaches to medievalism's impact on the development of Australian cultural identity. In particular, this digital repository aims to enhance public understandings of our British and European heritage in the context of contemporary debates about republicanism, the monarchy, and ethnic and cultural diversity.

Chief Investigators

Louise D’Arcens (University of Wollongong),
"[email protected]"

Louise D’Arcens is a Senior Lecturer in the English Literatures Program. She received a BA (Hons) specializing in medieval literature from the University of Sydney in 1990. Her 1997 PhD thesis, also completed at the University of Sydney, examined the concepts of political and literary authority in the writings of medieval women. Her two main current research areas are medievalism and medieval women’s writing. Medievalism examines post-medieval receptions and constructions of the Middle Ages, and considers the impact of these constructions on modern cultural, political, and social life. Louise’s work on Australian medievalism examines the cultural and ideological role played by medievalism in colonial and former-colonial societies. Her work on Christine de Pizan focuses on Christine’s political writings, examining how Christine deploys notions of gender and ethnicity to formulate models of political action and to authorize her own intervention into the late medieval political sphere. In addition to being a CI for this project, Louise is also leader of the Cultural Memories research theme of the ARC-funded Network for Early European Research, and is a co-ordinator of the ‘Australasian Medievalisms’ research cluster. She is also a member of the Advisory Committee of the Sydney Centre for Medieval Studies.

Andrew Lynch (University of Western Australia), (MA Melb.; MPhil Oxon.)
"[email protected]"

Andrew Lynch is director of the Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies and a Professor of English and Cultural Studies at the University of Western Australia.

In addition to this project, Andrew’s research and postgraduate supervision interests are primarily concerned with the following:
1. Medieval literature and culture in England, 1100-1500, with special reference to romantic, Arthurian and chivalric literature, as well as the writings of Malory and Chaucer. The traditions and discourse of war and peace writing; literature and ideology; literature and gender.
2. Post-medieval reception of medieval literature and culture, including editions, adaptations (including adaptations for children), critical responses, and original neo-medievalist literature and film.
3. Australian literature and culture, with special reference to poetry; studies in Australian medievalism; Francis Webb; the relationship between Australia and Ireland; and,
4. Modern Irish literature.

Stephanie Trigg (University of Melbourne)
"[email protected]"

Stephanie Trigg holds an Honours Degree and a PhD in English from the Department of English at the University of Melbourne and a B.Litt. degree in Philosophy and Social Theory from Melbourne. She was awarded the University of Melbourne's Woodward Medal for Research Excellence in the Humanities and Social Sciences in 2004, and the Faculty of Arts Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2003. In 2005, she was Visiting Hurst Professor in the Department of English and American Literature at Washington University in Saint Louis. In 2009 she is Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania, and Distinguished Lecturer, New York University. She was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 2006, and in 2008 received the Patricia Grimshaw Award for Excellence in Mentoring, and an Award for Teaching Excellence in Arts and Humanities from the Australian Teaching and Learning Council. In addition to this project, Stephanie is also working on a cultural history of the Order of the Garter (funded by a Discovery Grant from the Australian Research Council) and a book on the theory of medievalism, being jointly written with Thomas Prendergast (College of Wooster, Ohio). Stephanie is also a former president of ANZAMEMS. She also recently edited a collection of essays for the book Medievalism and the Gothic in Australian Culture (2008).

Partner Investigators

John Ganim (University of California, Riverside), (B.A. Rutgers; M.A., Ph.D. Indiana University)
"[email protected]"

John Ganim is a department chair and graduate advisor at the University of California, Riverside. He is the author of three books, Style and Consciousness in Middle English Narrative (1983), Chaucerian Theatricality (1990), both published by Princeton University Press and Medievalism and Orientalism: Three Essays on Literature, Architecture and Cultural Identity (2005; paperbound edition 2008), published by Palgrave MacMillan. From 2006 to 2008 he also served as President of the New Chaucer Society, and in July 2008 delivered the Presidential Address of the New Chaucer Society in Swansea, Wales, as well as the key note address for ANZAMEMS in 2007. Aside from his role as PI for this project and his latest book, Medievalism and Orientalism: Three Essays on Literature, Architecture and Cultural Identity, John’s more recent research focuses on how the Middle Ages is re-imagined from century to century in aesthetic and political realms; how medieval literature and contemporary theory engage; and how the form of late medieval literature is shaped by its institutional contexts. In Spring 2010, John will be leading a faculty Residential Research Group at the University of California Humanities Research Centre entitled "Holy Wars Redux." It brings together experts from several different fields to consider the afterlife of a medieval construct.