I am a Welsh medievalist with specializations in manuscript studies, archives, information technologies, and early British literature. I have published widely in this area over the last twenty years, focusing on religious poetry and prose, and manuscripts from c.600 to c.1300. I teach core courses in British Literary History up to about 1600, on Text Technologies, and on Palaeography and Archival Studies. I supervise honors students and graduate students working in early literature, Book History, and Digital Humanities. I am committed to providing a supportive and ethical working environment for all scholars and colleagues. My current projects focus on the book as object and the long history of Text Technologies. I research the hapticity and phenomenology of the Medieval book, and will be publishing The Phenomenal Book: Perceptions of Medieval Manuscripts based on this work. This research also extends to a more modern period of the Medieval, and to the work of artists, including William Morris, Edward Johnston, John Gwenogvryn Evans, Philip Lee Warner, Eric Gill, and David Jones, and I hope to publish on these figures in The Aesthetic Book: Arts and Crafts to Modernism eventually. I have completed work on Salisbury Cathedral Library's early medieval manuscripts, and I am now writing on this exceptional collection of early textual materials still held in situ.
I am the Director of Stanford Text Technologies (https://texttechnologies.stanford.edu), and, with Claude Willan, published Text Technologies: A History in 2019. Other projects include 'CyberText Technologies' and SOPES (Ordinary People, Extraordinary Stories). In the former, we're developing models for predicting the future of information technologies, based on the discernible patterns and cyclical trends inherent to all forms of communication. Text Technologies' other initiatives include an annual intensive collegium now in its sixth year: the first, on 'Distortion' in May 2015 was published as Textual Distortion in 2017. The fourth, the largest with 25 speakers, will be published in 2020 by Routledge as Medieval Manuscripts in the Digital Age. I am the Principal Investigator of the NEH-Funded 'Stanford Global Currents' (https://globalcurrents.stanford.edu/) and Co-PI of the AHRC-funded research project and ebook, The Production and Use of English Manuscripts, 1060 to 1220 (Leicester, 2010, http://www.le.ac.uk/ee/em1060to1220/; the expanded version 2.0 appeared in 2018: https://em1060.stanford.edu/). Recent publications include A Very Short Introduction to Medieval Literature (OUP, 2015); Living Through Conquest: The Politics of Early English (OUP, 2012); and Old and Middle English, c.890-1490 (Wiley-Blackwell), which is now moving into a 4th edition. In 2020, the Cambridge Companion to British Medieval Manuscripts, co-edited with Dr Orietta Da Rold, will be published. Among other work, I edited The Oxford Handbook of Medieval Literature in English (OUP, 2010) with Greg Walker. With Walker, I'm General Editor of the OUP series, Oxford Textual Perspectives. I'm a General Editor of Stanford University Press's Text Technologies Series; and I am a former Editor of the English Association's Essays and Studies series.
Some of my new work in both teaching and research is focusing specifically on the issue of Digital Interpretative Frameworks.I'm a keen advocate for and critic of the use of digital technologies in the classroom and in research; and I am concerned about the ways in which we describe and display manuscripts, and employ palaeographical and codicological tools online. As the former Director of the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis (CESTA) at Stanford, I focused on enhancing the archival projects we supported. I'm a qualified archivist and, with colleagues, am developing archival courses and methodological scholarship. Also with colleagues at Stanford and at Cambridge, we launched the massive online courses, 'Digging Deeper 1 and 2': 'Making Manuscripts' and 'Interpreting Manuscripts'. I blog and tweet regularly, and my most read publication was 'Beowulf in 100 Tweets' (#Beow100)! I have been an American Philosophical Society Franklin Fellow and a Princeton Procter Fellow. I'm a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries; a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society; an Honorary Lifetime Fellow of the English Assocation (and that Association's former Chair and President); and a Fellow of the Learned Society of Wales.
I am a passionate advocate for Integrated Humanities in all areas of life and especially at Stanford, where I'm the Resident Fellow of Ng Humanities House.
I am on Sabbatical from September 2019 to September 2020.