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Jessica Hodgkinson

History, University of Leicester

Thesis title:

Gender and Literacy: the participation of women in book culture in England and Francia, c.650 – c.950

This project explores the active participation of women in book culture – the production, use and exchange of books, facilitated and sustained by literate networks – in early medieval England and Francia between c. 650 and c. 950. 

Through analysis of extant manuscripts patronised, written, owned and/or used by women, both individually and collectively, this project seeks to advance knowledge and understanding of the nature, extent and significance of women’s involvement in early medieval literary networks, highlighting how women could use books and book culture to exercise agency and pursue their own aims. 

Research Area

  • History


"Gloria in excelsis deo: demoting the archbishopric of Lichfield"; Ecclesiastical History Society Postgraduate Colloquium; DeMontfort University; 6 November 2019 

Other Research Interests

  • The development and use of insular scripts in continental scriptoria
  • The "Mercian supremacy" and Mercian ecclesiastical institutions, particularly the archbishopric of Lichfield 


Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship 

Blog posts

"Abbesses and Early Medieval Book Culture" think piece, Journal of the History of Ideas Blog (March 2022)