Italian: Medieval studies, Dante, Boccaccio, Petrarch, medieval chronicles, historiography, gender studies
Sumptuous Literature: Clothing, Gender and Governance in Fourteenth-Century Italy, my current book project, explores the idea of a "sumptuary ethic" (such as the laws that regulated clothing and displays of wealth) in the thematic treatments of luxurious dress and extravagant spending that can be found in the works of Italy’s “three crowns” of literature: Dante, Boccaccio, and Petrarch, as well as other poets and chroniclers of the period. In order to maintain social order, sumptuary legislation and ecclesiastical admonitions targeted various displays of luxury: excessive spending on clothing, jewelry, and rituals, such as funereal practices and exorbitant wedding dowries. Sumptuous clothing, a visual language of its own that signified status, became an essential part of a poetic language that addressed politics, gender and civic identity.
(See attached CV for complete list.)
Reviewed in: Choice (May 2015) 52: 9; Renaissance Quarterly 69:1 (Spring 2016): 360-362; Modern Language Review 111:2 (April 2016): 558-559; Heliotropia 12-13 (2015-16): 373-77; Nuova informazione bibliografica 2 (April-June 2016): 379-390; Annali d’italianistica 34 (2016): 552-53; Studi sul Boccaccio XLIV (2016): 432-35; Speculum 92:3 (July 2017): 873-75.
Reviewed in: Studi sul Boccaccio XLIV (2016): 429-32; Renaissance Quarterly 70:1 (Spring 2017):372-73; Italian Culture 35:1 (2017): 53-4; The Medieval Review (2/12/16); Studi sul Boccaccio 44 (2016); Annali d’Italianistica 35 (2017): 541-43.
“Conceptions of Women and Gender in the Comedy.” For Approaches to Teaching Dante’s Divine Comedy, second edition. Edited by Christopher Kleinhenz and Kristina Olson. Modern Language Association. Series: Approaches to Teaching World Literature (forthcoming)
“The Ethical and Sartorial Geography of the Far East: Tartar Textiles in Boccaccio’s Decameron and Esposizioni,” Le Tre Corone: Rivista internazionale di studi su Dante, Petrarca, Boccaccio (forthcoming, 2019)
“Worse than Dante’s Hell: Parents, Children and Pain at the Border,” Dante Notes, September 28, 2018 (https://www.dantesociety.org/node/132).
“Selected Illustrations from Birk’s Comedy.” Birk Illustrations, Digital Dante. New York, NY: Columbia University Libraries, 2017. (https://digitaldante.columbia.edu/image/birk-illustrations/inferno/)
“Shoes, Gowns, and Turncoats: Reconsidering Cacciaguida’s History of Florentine Fashion and Politics,” Dante Studies: The Annual Publication of the Dante Society of America 134 (2016): 26-47.
“Uncovering the Historical Body of Florence: Dante, Boccaccio and Sumptuary Legislation,” Italian Culture 33:1 (March 2015): 1-15.
“Dante’s Urban American Vernacular: Sandow Birk’s Divine Comedy.” Special Edition: “New Voices in Dante Criticism,” Dante Studies: The Annual Publication of the Dante Society of America 131 (2013): 143-169.
“The Language of Women as Written by Men: Dante, Boccaccio, and Gendered Histories of the Vernacular,” Heliotropia 8-9 (2011-12, http://www.heliotropia.org/08-09/olson.pdf) Reprinted in Heliotropia 700/10: A Boccaccio Anniversary Volume (LED, 2013), pp. 217-236.
Selected poetry from Amelia Rosselli’s Documento. Published in the Italian Poetry Review, volume 4 (Società editrice fiorentina, 2009).
“Resurrecting Dante’s Florence: Figural Realism in the Decameron and the Esposizioni,” Modern Language Notes 124:1 (January 2009): 45-65.
“’Concivis meus’: Petrarch’s Rerum memorandarum libri 2.60, Boccaccio’s Decameron 6.9, and the Specter of Dino del Garbo,” Annali d’Italianistica 24 (2005): 375-80.
At George Mason University:
Thesis Advisor and Reader (at Mason)