Right now, my dissertation topic is abominably general. When asked about it, I usually just say “Anglo-Saxon prose” and when pressed, I usually stutter something out about “spaces in histories” or “places and temporalities.” Lately, I’ve added (instead of specifying), “sailing/navigation/ships/sailors/merchants and legal documents/changing economy of the newly-minted England.” Ideally I will be able to put something together that involves the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle(s), legal documents and other vernacular writings, ships, navigation, maps, and spatial/temporal creativity. It’s not looking good.
I’m still working on the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle Map, but I know that it will only be a portion of my otherwise traditional dissertation. I’d like to settle at least on a group of texts, but before narrowing the field of primary material, I’ve been searching for a specific topic that needs more scholarly attention.
Here’s what I’ve read and written up this summer (in addition to translating and mapping).
Barney, Stephen A. et al, eds. The Etymologies of Isidore of Seville. Cambridge University Press, 2010.
Keynes, Simon and Michael Lapidge. Alfred the Great: Asser’s Life of Alfred and Other Contemporary Sources. Penguin Books, London, 1983.
Lapidge, Michael. The Anglo-Saxon Library. Oxford University Press, 2006.
Foys, Martin. Virtually Anglo-Saxon: Old Media, New Media, and Early Medieval Studies in the Late Age of Print. University Press of Florida, 2007.
Lees, Clare A. and Gillian R. Overing, eds. A Place to Believe In: Locating Medieval Landscapes. Pennsylvania State University Press, 2006.
Lewis, Archibald and Timothy J. Runyan. European Naval and Maritime History, 300-1500. Indiana University Press, 1985.
Hanawalt, Barbara A. and Michael Kobialka, eds. Medieval Practices of Space. Medieval Cultures, vol 23. University of Minnesota Press, 2003.