Since receiving my Ph.D. in medieval history from the University of Notre Dame in 2007, I have been teaching at the university level. I am now an associate professor in the Department of History at the University of New Mexico.
My research focuses on inter-cultural and inter-religious relations within the Mediterranean Sea region, with a specific focus on Sicily and her neighbors from the 6th-12th centuries. My book, Where Three Worlds Met: Sicily in the Early Medieval Mediterranean (Cornell University Press, 2017), explores the relationships between Greek Christians, Muslims, and Latin Christians in the central Mediterranean through analysis of communications and travel that occurred to and from the island of Sicily. Governed at various times by Greeks, Muslims, and Latins, Sicily was a locus of both contention and communication across the Middle Ages. By understanding the types, reasons, and destinations of travel that took place between Sicily and other regions, we understand more fully the inter-connectedness of the Muslim and Christian worlds of the medieval period. At the same time, this manuscript asks historians to reconsider the periodization of Sicily’s history, which has traditionally been separated into Byzantine, Muslim, and Norman periods for study and analysis. By looking across these periods, and thinking about political conquest as a point of union rather than division, I argue that Muslim-Christian interaction and exchange has been a primary constructive element in the history of medieval Sicily and the central Mediterranean. I am also currently developing my second major research project on family history within medieval Muslim minority communities in Christian Europe.