Sophie Jordan

PhD student

Office hours



My research focuses on late medieval understandings of cultural mixedness and alterity. For my thesis, I am exploring blackness and race in Middle High German and Middle Dutch Arthurian romance and trying to identify how the black characters featured in my texts fit into the cultural context they emerged from.

I completed my B.A. and M.St. in German at the University of Oxford, with a year spent studying at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität in Heidelberg. My M.St. dissertation engaged with the debate on pre-modern race by looking at blackness as a factor of integration at the court of King Arthur in the Middle Dutch Moriaen. I also hold an M.A. in Social Anthropology from the University of Manchester, which has allowed me to broaden my methodological horizons and to gain insight into the social mechanisms which are at the core of my research interests.

I grew up near Strasbourg on the Franco-German border, but my first language was Frenglish. I love being outside, music from all periods, and food.

Publications and Presentations:

  • “Black Excellence at Arthur’s Court: Moriaen and Medieval Northern Germanic Concepts of Blackness.” German Studies Canada at the Congress of the Humanities & Social Sciences. May 28-30, 2023. York University.
  • “Taxonomy of an Early Modern ‘Shared Space’: Diversity in the Balkans of Benedikt Kuripešič.” German Studies Canada at the Congress of the Humanities & Social Sciences. May 15-17, 2022.
  • (co-author) Bulletin Bibliographique de la Société Rencesvals, fasc. 53 (2021-2022) and fasc. 54 (2022-2023).
  • “How Black is Middle Dutch Moorish Black?” Oxford Medieval Studies. January 1, 2021.