History

I have been writing as an academic historian for over two decades. My historical work is based on research I began for my graduate thesis in history from Oxford University (M.Litt, 1995). My work has focused on urban culture in the French city of Rouen in the 16th and early 17th century, and has recently broadened to explore aspects of urban literary culture across Europe in this period.

My work as a historian has been made possible thanks to a long-standing Fellowship with the Centre for Renaissance and Reformation Studies at Victoria College in the University of Toronto. For many years, I have also been the assistant editor of the academic journal Confraternitas, which covers one of my areas of interest.

History Publications

Articles

"‘To speak well and prudently’: Literary Associations and Civic Corporate Culture" in Communication by Performance. Performative Literary Culture and the World of Learning (1200-1700), eds. Arjan van Dixhoorn and Susie Speakman Sutch. Forthcoming (Brill)

"Jacques Sireulde, the Handsome Usher" in Communication by Performance. Performative Literary Culture and the World of Learning (1200-1700), eds. Arjan van Dixhoorn and Susie Speakman Sutch. Forthcoming (Brill)

"Confraternities and Poetry: The Francophone Puys" in A Companion to Medieval and Early Modern Confraternities, ed. Konrad Eisenbichler. Companions to the Christian Tradition, 83 (Leiden: Brill, 2019), 385-405

"Chevauchees, mascarades et jeux acoustumez: Jurisdiction over Carnival in Sixteenth-Century Rouen" in La Permission et la Sanction : Théories légales et pratiques du théâtre (xive-xviie siècle), eds. Marie Bouhaïk-Gironès, Jelle Koopmans and Katell Lavéant (Paris: Classiques Garnier, 2017), 165-199

"Enfants de la ville: Bourgeois Horsemanship and Combat Games in French Royal Entries" in Sport and Culture in Early Modern Europe, eds. John McClellan and Brian Merrilees (Toronto: CRRS, 2009), 269-294. Full text (PDF)

"Patrons of Poetry: Rouen's Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of our Lady" in The Reach of the Republic of Letters: Learned and Literary Societies in Late Medieval Early Modern Europe, eds. Arjan van Dixhoorn and Susie Speakman Sutch (Leiden: Brill, 2008), 33-78. Full text (PDF)

"Piety, Poetry and Politics: Rouen's Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception and the French Wars of Religion" in Early Modern Confraternities in Europe and the Americas: International and Interdisciplinary Perspectives, eds. Christopher Black and Pamela Gravestock (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2006), 151-170. Full Text (PDF)

"Renaissance Printing and Provincial Culture in Sixteenth-Century Rouen," University of Toronto Quarterly 73:4 (2004), Special Issue: New Scholarship in Book History and Print Culture, 1011-1020. Full text (PDF)

"Measuring the Impact of Brotherhood: Robert Putnam's Making Democracy Work and Confraternal Studies," Confraternitas 14:1 (2003), 3-12. Full text

"Local Printing, Local Pride: Rouen's Nineteenth-Century Bibliophiles and the Renaissance Printing Industry" in The Renaissance in the Nineteenth Century/Le 19e siècle renaissant, eds. Yannick Portebois and Nicholas Terpstra (Toronto: CRRS, 2002), 199-216

"The Triumph of the Abbey of the Conards: Spectacle and Sophistication in a Rouen Carnival" in Medieval and Early Modern Rituals: Formalized Behavior in the East and West, ed. Joëlle Rollo-Koster (Leiden: Brill, 2002), 147-173

"Carnival in Rouen: A History of the Abbaye des Conards," The Sixteenth Century Journal 22:4 (2001), 1027-1056. Full text (JSTOR)

"The Virgin and Saint Cecilia: Music in the Confraternal Puys of Rouen," Confraternitas 8:2 (1997), 3-7. Full text

"Moderate Devotion, Mediocre Poetry and Magnificent Food: The Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of Rouen," Confraternitas 7:1 (1996), 3-10

Encyclopedia Article

"Humanism and Learning" in Renaissance and Reformation, a reference set for secondary students (Marshall Cavendish: 2007). (13 pages)

Reviews

Thelen, Emily S. (ed.) with the collaboration of Susie Speakman Sutch. The Seven Sorrows Confraternity of Brussels. Drama, Ceremony, and Art Patronage (16th–17th Centuries). Turnhout: Brepols, 2015. In Confraternitas 26:2 (Fall 2015)

Manuel de prière à l’usage des Pénitents blancs de Montpellier. Montpellier: Confrérie des Pénitents blancs de Montpellier, 2011. In Confraternitas 26:2 (Fall 2015)

Les Confréries de pénitents à Toulouse. Deux études in Confraternitas 25:2 (Fall 2014). Full text

Les confréries dans la ville de Rouen à l’époque moderne, XVIe–XVIIIe siècles. Documents presentés par Marc Venard, in Confraternitas 25:1 (Spring 2014). Full text

Confréries et confrères en Limousin du Moyen Age à nos jours in Confraternitas 24:1 (Spring 2013). Full text

Confréries et devotions dans la Catholicité moderne (Mi-XVe-début XIXe siècle). Études réunies par Bernard Dompnier et Paola Vismara. Collection de l'École française de Rome, 393. Rome: École française de Rome, 2008, in Confraternitas 19:2 (Fall 2009), 31-32

Louise Bourdua, The Franciscans and Art Patronage in Late Medieval Italy, in Confraternitas 15:1 (Spring 2004)

Petite Anthologie Palinodique (1485-1550), ed. Denis Hüe, Textes de la Renaissance 59 (Paris: Honoré Champion, 2002), in Confraternitas 14:1 (Spring 2003), 20-22

Confraternities and Catholic Reform in Italy, France and Spain, eds. John Patrick Donnelly and Michael W. Maher (Kirksville: Thomas Jefferson University Press, 1999), in Confraternitas 10:2 (Fall 1999), 23-24

Jon Arrizabalaga, John Henderson and Roger French, The Great Pox: The French Disease in Renaissance Europe (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1997), in Confraternitas 9:2 (Fall 1998), 35-37

Conference Presentations

"'A Sure Repository of Wise Counsel': Literary Confraternities as Embodiments of Civic Behaviour," Renaissance Society of America, Toronto, March 2019

Panelist, “Building Communities for Renaissance Studies: Models and Strategies Using New Technologies,” Rethinking Early Modern Collegialities: A conference in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of The Toronto Renaissance and Reformation Colloquium, 1964–2014, Toronto, November 2014

"Associational and Civic Ideals," Communication by Performance. Literary Societies and the World of Learning (1200-1700), Madrid, July 2011

"The Puy des Pauvres at Rouen," International Courtly Literature Society Triennial Congress, Montreal, July 2010.

"The Handsome Usher: How Jacques Sireulde Built a Literary Career through the Literary Societies of Sixteenth-Century Rouen," Literary and Learned Societies and Performative Culture, Wassenaar, The Netherlands, July 2009

"Literary Societies: Corporate Culture and Civil Society," Ways of Communication: Literary and Learned Societies and the Republic of Letters (1200-1700), Wolfenbüttel, Germany, June 24-26, 2008

"The 'Puy de la Conception Notre Dame' of Rouen," The Reach of the Republic of Letters: Learned and Literary Societies in Early Modern Europe, II, Rome, Italy, March 9-12, 2006

"The Renaissance in Rouen: The Context of the Entries of the Early Sixteenth Century," The Mediations of Royal Entry Ceremonies (1530-1650), Workshop sponsored by GRES, University of Toronto, March 2005

"Adapting the Renaissance to Rouen," Sixteenth Century Studies Conference, Toronto, October 2004

"Enfants de la ville: Bourgeois Horsemanship and Combat Games in French Royal Entries," Athletes and Athletics, 1000-1650 A.D., Toronto, June 2004

"Piety, Poetry and Politics: Rebuilding Rouen's Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception after the French Wars of Religion," Renaissance Society of America, Toronto, March 2003

"Renaissance Printing and Provincial Culture in Sixteenth-Century Rouen," New Scholarship in Book History and Print Culture, Toronto, October 2002

"David Ferrand at the Puy of Rouen: Patois Poetry and Provincial Culture," Society for French Historical Studies Conference, Toronto, April 2002

"Local Printing, Local Pride: Rouen's Nineteenth-Century Bibliophiles and the Renaissance Printing Industry," The Renaissance in the Nineteenth Century, Toronto, October 2001

"The Literature of the Abbaye des Conards: Popular Texts in Sixteenth-Century Rouen," The Sixteenth Century Studies Conference, Toronto, October 1998

"Literary and Religious Innovation among the Bourgeois of Sixteenth-Century Rouen," Motives, pretexts, speeches and events: literature, history and the use of the past in early modern Europe (Conference), Toronto, March 1998

"Conards and Bateleurs: the Production of Comic Theatre in Mid-Sixteenth-Century Rouen," International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 1997

"From the Confraternity of Sainte Cécile to the Abbey of the Conards: The Role of Confraternities in Rouen's Festive Life," International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 1996

"The Abbaye des Conards during the Wars of Religion," Society for French Historical Studies Conference, Boston, March 1996

"Bad Poetry, Good Food and Moderate Devotion: The Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception of Rouen," International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 1995

Thesis

"Literary Aspects of Urban Culture in Rouen, c. 1500-c.1640." M.Litt thesis, Oxford University, 1995. 337 pp