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Henry Bainton

Distinguished Postdoctoral Fellowship

Feeling History in the High Middle Ages

Why:

We now know that emotions have a history, but we have not thought much about the emotions of history itself. This project explores how medieval history-writers expressed/suppressed their own emotions, and how those emotions shaped the histories they wrote.

How:

The project involves identifying and closely reading a corpus of history-writing that explicitly invokes (or renounces) emotion in response to traumatic events, and putting that corpus into dialogue with medieval and modern theories of the emotions.

What:

Emotions shape the stories that shape politics: understanding how they do illuminates the relationship between individuals and the social realm, the boundaries between private and public life, and about the media's role and responsibilities.