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Emily Winkler

AB (Dartmouth, USA); MSt, DPhil (Oxford)

Emily A. Winkler is the John Cowdrey Junior Research Fellow in History at St Edmund Hall. Dr Winkler’s research and teaching centres on Europe before 1200. She works primarily on historical writing, political thought and the reception of the classics in the early and central Middle Ages, with particular reference to the British Isles, the North Sea zone, and the Anglo-Norman world. Her work seeks to apply cross-disciplinary and comparative approaches to the past for a better understanding of medieval people and ideas.

Her first book, Royal Responsibility in Anglo-Norman Historical Writing (Oxford University Press, 2017), examines ideas of moral and causal responsibility, historical contingency, and royal rulership in eleventh- and twelfth-century historical writing. In June she directed a major international conference on the Norman presence in the medieval Mediterranean. In the summer of 2017 she held an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship at the University of Mainz in Germany, where she worked on a research project about relationships in the remote past in Britain’s high medieval historical writing.

At present, she is writing an article on the changing attitudes towards kingship and queenship in tenth-century Britain, and a study comparing invasion narratives of the early medieval British Isles. Her current collaborative projects include a volume of essays entitled Rewriting History in the Central Middle Ages, c. 950–1250 and a new collection about the Normans in southern Italy and Sicily. Future projects include a monograph about the nature of historical writing in the medieval British Isles, and a shorter study on the Norman impact on visions of the past in the Mediterranean.

As Vice-President for the UK and Europe of the Haskins Society, a scholarly organisation devoted to the study of the early and central Middle Ages, Dr Winkler plans and supports conference sessions on a variety of themes to support the Society’s international community of medievalists. Dr Winkler’s outreach activities have included organising a major millennial anniversary event commemorating the Danish Conquest of England, speaking for local historical associations in Malmesbury, London, Aylesbury and Knutsford, and working closely with the alumni associations of Jesus College and St Edmund Hall to promote lifelong learning of history.

An advocate of writing, she has served as a judge for St Edmund Hall’s Ex Aula prize for the best article submitted to Ex Aula, the online journal written and edited by St Edmund Hall postgraduate students. She delivered a ‘Teddy Talk’ at St Edmund Hall’s Research Expo 2017, entitled ‘Was there history in the Middle Ages?’, available as a University podcast and YouTube video.

After completing her A.B. in History and Classics at Dartmouth College, Dr Winkler came to England to read for the M.St. in Medieval Studies at Jesus College, Oxford. She earned her doctoral degree from Oxford in 2013. As a member of the University’s Faculty of History, she designed and team-taught a new course entitled ‘Writing and Thinking in History’, which encouraged students to consider history and writing at a deeper level. At Oxford, she has supervised undergraduate theses and teaches sequences in medieval European history and the history and literature of the British Isles. From 2016–2017 she held the post of Departmental Lecturer in Early Medieval History at Balliol College and the Faculty of History. In addition, as a Teaching Fellow at University College London since 2014, she serves as the History Department’s Writing and Learning Mentor, supervises MA dissertations on the High Middle Ages, teaches postgraduate courses in medieval Latin and historiography, and teaches undergraduate modules in medieval history, museum studies and the world of the North Sea Zone.







  • ‘A Journey through the Medieval Past: One Historian’s Quest and Questions’, The Aularian 23 (2016).
  • ‘“Upon the rock of Harlech”: an aspect on the sea and the past’, Bringing the Outside In: Enriching Student Learning in the Humanities through Environmental Engagement (Warwick: The Higher Education Academy, History and English Subject Centres, 2010), 42–3.
  • ‘Sicily: Island of Myth’, Corriere della Valle: Magazine of the Pacific Alliance 7:2 (2009), 14–15.

External Websites

Faculty of History, University of Oxford
University College London
xford Academia