About Me

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I am a medievalist and an adjunct college instructor in the humanities at Union College. My research includes medieval theologies of history, text/image relationships in visionary and mystical texts, and the writings of the twelfth-century Doctor of the Church, St. Hildegard of Bingen. I am also a translator of medieval Latin and German texts, especially as relate to my research. My translation of Hildegard's Book of Divine Works is available from Catholic University of America Press here. I completed a Master's in Medieval Studies at the University of Notre Dame in 2010, a Fulbright Fellowship in Germany in 2008, and a B.A. in Classics and German at Boston College in 2007.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Internal Assessment

As much as I would like this experience to continue—though perhaps Münster’s weather this week is an indication that it should come to an end: rainy and cold (60’s Fahrenheit)—my days left in Germany as a Fulbright Scholar are fast dwindling. On Tuesday past, my neighbors at the dorm had a farewell barbecue for me (fortunately, the rain held off until later in the night); last night, Jennifer Burkart and her husband, Jörg, hosted me, along with the Hoyes and my friend Timon, at their house for another farewell dinner; this morning I delivered the last part of my presentation on my work to the Hildegard seminar I have particpated in this semester, which itself met today for the last time. All good things must come to an end, or so I’ve been told. Before my time here fully runs out on Tuesday morning when I board a flight back to the States, however, I would like to evaluate and assess my work this year from a more concrete perspective than my musings offered earlier this week.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The “Human Rights” of Chimpanzees

According to a recent article in the New York Times, a committee of the Spanish parliament last month voted to extend “limited rights to our closest biological relatives, the great apes — chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas and orangutans,” in accordance with the precepts of the Great Ape Project. The proposal would make it illegal in Spain “to kill apes except in self-defense. Torture, including in medical experiments, and arbitrary imprisonment, including for circuses or films, would be forbidden.”

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The Bells

As I enter the final full week of my time here in Germany, it is only natural that I should be found in a pensive and reflective mood; as I’ve already noted some weeks ago, I will certainly miss this town.Later this week I will put together a post that reflects more concretely on my work this year; today, I would like to address a question that has often been put to me in recent weeks, namely, what will I miss most about being in Germany?