Former Past & Present Fellow Shortlisted for the 2020 Gladstone Prize

by the Past & Present editorial team

Past & Present is delighted to hear that Dr. Stephen Spencer who was a Past & Present Society funded Research Fellow at the Institute of History Research (London) between 2017 and 2019 has been shortlisted for the Royal History Society’s (RHS) 2020 Gladstone Prize.

He has been shortlisted for his book Emotions in a Crusading Context 1095-1291 which developed from his PhD work and was completed whilst he was a Past & Present Fellow. The book has been published by Oxford University Press as part of their “Emotions in History” series.

In the book Spencer provides:

  • The first book-length study of the emotional rhetoric of crusading
  • Explores the ways in which two emotions (fear and anger) and one affective display (weeping) were represented in Latin and Old French narratives of the crusades
  • Identifies the various influences which shaped western chroniclers’ approaches to, and representations of, emotions in a crusading context
  • Calls for greater sensitivity in using historical narratives to reconstruct crusaders’ lived emotions, beliefs, and ideologies
  • Makes use of a broad range of comparative material to gauge the distinctiveness of these narratives: crusader letters, papal encyclicals, model sermons, chansons de geste, lyrics, and an array of theological and philosophical treatises.

The Gladstone Prize is one of two book prizes that the RHS awards each year. Supported by the Gladstone Memorial Trust the prize is awarded to a scholar holding a doctoral degree from a British or Irish university for their first solo authored book. The book must have been published in the calendar year immediately preceding the year in which the prize is awarded.

Our congratulations to Dr. Spencer that his work has been recognised in this way.

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