Based in the University of Birmingham, the Centre for the Study of the Middle Ages is an  academic network that promotes and facilitates research from a wide range of disciplines. As well as research projects and annual public lectures, the CeSMA hosts seminars every 2-3 weeks with guest speakers from a variety of institutions and backgrounds. The following is a list of the planned seminars for the remainder of this academic term:


Christ on the altar: visualising his sacrifice at the time of
Byzantine iconoclasm and other theological controversies

Speaker: Dr Francesca Dell’Acqua, University of Salerno
Wednesday the 9th of October 2019, 14:15
Arts building 201

Dr Dell’Acqua is Assistant Professor in art history at the University of Salerno and a specialist in the material cultures of western and Mediterranean Europe in the Middle Ages. She has taught at the universities of Florence and East Anglia, and has taken part in archaeological fieldwork across Europe.


Middle English literature in medieval Europe

Speaker: Dr Aisling Byrne, University of Reading
Wednesday the 23rd of October 2019, 14:15
Arts building 201

Dr Byrne is a Lecturer in medieval English literature at the University of Reading. Her research encompasses medieval romance, chivalric literature, monsters and marvels,  textual cultures, medieval translation, cross-cultural encounters, in medieval European writing.


Governing by writing: applying imperial calligraphy in Tang

Speaker: Xie Chen, University of Birmingham
Wednesday the 13th November 2019, 14:15
Arts building lecture room 8

Xie Chen is a PhD student studying artistic patronage in the court of the Tang dynasty. In 2016 Chen was one of only four students to be awarded the prestigious Li Siguang Scholarship.


Missing numbers: macro regions and the political economic
geography in first millenium CE Southeast Asia

Speaker: Phacharaphorn Phanomvan, University of Oxford
Wednesday the 27th November 2019, 14:15
Arts building 201

Phacharaphorn Phanomvan is a DPhil student at the University of Oxford, specialising in southeast Asian economic history. Earlier this year Phacharaphorn was awarded a grant by the Scottish Funding Council’s Global Challenges Research Fund scheme to investigate the illegal antiques trade and the looting of heritage sites in Nepal and Myanmar.

Re/de-centering women and books in the Middle Ages

Speaker: Dr Elizabeth L’Estrange, University of Birmingham
Wednesday the 11th December 2019, 14:15
Arts building 201

Dr L’Estrange is a lecturer and head of the University of Birmingham’s Art History department. She is a specialist in late medieval and early modern illuminated manuscripts, and in the gendered reception of medieval books. She was awarded a commendation by the CARMEN medieval network for her project ‘Reassessing Women and the Book, c. 800-1600’.


For more information on future CeSMA seminars and changes to this year’s itinerary, do bookmark the following link:

You can also find the Centre for the Study of the Middle Ages on Facebook:


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