Going Global—New Directions for Queenship Studies

By Ellie Woodacre

Queenship studies is a thriving academic discipline and wider interest in queenship is also reflected in a plethora of books on queens in the mainstream press as well as movies, tv series and novels about queens in popular culture. Biographical studies of the lives on individual queens or collective biographies of groups of queens have long been a mainstay of the field. Indeed, as I’ve argued elsewhere, these biographies which stem back to the middle ages, are arguably the point of origin for queenship studies itself and are still vital to the field today, as Routledge’s Lives of Royal Women series demonstrates. Many themes have been explored by queenship specialists–the political activity and agency of queens, their religious and cultural patronage, their familial and court networks, and the ways in which queens ‘self-fashioned’ their image are just a few examples of areas which have attracted considerable interest from scholars. In terms of period and place however, the focus has long been on medieval and early modern Europe—this has been the ‘comfort zone’ for both queenship and royal studies. While this has resulted in some fantastic scholarship on European queens and there are still individual women as well as areas of Europe which are understudied, a new trend is emerging to look at queenship globally, across all time, place, cultures and religions.

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Scholar Introduction: Gabby Storey

Hi, and welcome to the first introductory post to a member of #teamqueens! We’ll have several of these brief posts running over the next few weeks so you can put a name to a face, and find out more about all the wonderful team behind Team Queens!

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