Medieval & Renaissance Studies Faculty
M.A., Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles
Professor Beneš is a cultural historian specializing in late medieval Italy and the classical tradition. Her main research interests involve intellectual networks and the construction of history as a means to identity: specifically, how people throughout history have used and manipulated the past to suit their own ends. Her other academic interests include book history (palaeography, codicology, illumination and the history of libraries), Italian humanism, the history and historiography of the Renaissance, urban history and the plague; course offerings encompass these subjects as well as general surveys of the medieval, Renaissance, and early modern periods. She has received numerous professional honors, including most recently (2008–2009) a Mellon Foundation Post-Doctoral Rome Prize at the American Academy in Rome, Italy.
M.A., M.Phil., Ph.D., Yale University
Professor Carrasco’s research interests center on issues of narrative, gender and authority in illustrated cycles of the lives of the saints. She has published in The Art Bulletin, Gesta, Studies in Iconography, and Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte. A specialist on the art of the Middle Ages, she teaches courses on a range of themes within medieval architecture, sculpture and painting, from Late Antiquity to the Gothic cathedral. She also offers courses on the Renaissance in Italy and the North and has recently developed new seminars on major artists of the Renaissance (Michelangelo) and Baroque (Caravaggio).
M.A., Ph.D., University of California, Irvine
Professor Langston, holding doctorates in both philosophy and religion, teaches in these two areas. He specializes in the philosophy of religion and in medieval philosophical and religious thought. He offers courses also in nineteenth-century thought, focusing on such figures as Kant, Hegel and Kierkegaard.
M.A., M.Litt., Trinity College, Dublin
McCarthy specializes in medieval intellectual history, with particular emphasis on Ottonian and Salian Germany. He has published on biblical commentary, palaeography, textual transmission and medieval music theory. His past and current teaching areas include the history of music from the middle ages to the Baroque period, modal counterpoint, medieval monasticism, Carolingian Europe, the conflict between Empire and Papacy in the eleventh century, the first crusade and the origins of the idea of crusading, as well as diplomatic palaeography and codicology.
Professor Myhill offers courses and tutorials in medieval and Renaissance British Literature. She also teaches drama and dramatic theory in all periods, and is involved in the theater program. Her research focuses on theories of audience and genre in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English drama.
M.A., Ph.D., University of Washington
Professor Rohrbacher teaches Latin at all levels and classical civilization in all periods. He is also active in the concentrations in Literature, Medieval and Renaissance Studies and Gender Studies. He is a recent recipient of an Excellence in Teaching Award from the American Philological Association, the premier organization for the study of Classics in North America.
His scholarly interests include Latin literature, Roman history and historiography, and Late Antiquity. He is the author of The Historians of Late Antiquity (Routledge 2002) and articles and reviews on Roman imperial history and literature.
Professor Zhang joined New College in 2007 to start the Chinese program. She has since designed and taught Chinese language courses at all levels, including an introduction to Classical Chinese. She has offered both survey and topical courses on Chinese literature and culture, covering periods, genres, writers and literary movements of the pre-modern China extensively. Professor Zhang’s scholarly work focuses on the rise of vernacular fiction, theater and book culture in the late Ming and Qing China. Her recent research examines book illustrations, a prominent feature of books printed in this period, as both a form of commentary and a visual attraction.
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