Assistant Professor
Department of Classics, Department of Comparative Literature
fbezner@berkeley.edu

Research Expertise and Interest

Medieval Latin literature; Medieval literary culture; Neo-Latin; Intellectual history

Description

My main research interest lies on Medieval Latin literature which I approach from a set of related questions that all revolve around a practice of contextualizing and re-contextualizing: what is the relation between literary texts and the intellectual, institutional, and political milieus in which they originate? In what way did medieval and Neo-Latin literary texts negotiate ideas, values, and political claims from within these milieus? Which critical categories are necessary to explore and analyze the undervalued role of a symbolic medium as Latin literature as part of medieval and post-medieval contexts? And how, in turn, do our accounts and histories of these contexts – of medieval institutions, intellectual fields, and political sites – change in the light of these often ignored literary texts? What interests me, in short, is an intellectual and cultural history of medieval and post-medieval Latin literature and literary culture. So far, I have worked on a new account of medieval allegory in the Latin culture of the 12th century Renaissance (F.Bezner, Vela Veritatis, Brill 2005) and a genealogy of late-medieval historiography (F. Bezner, Von der Liturgie zur Geschichte, 2011). My current research interest is a re-interpretation of medieval Latin love poetry.

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