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Chelsea Silva

Assistant Professor

Address: Morrill 201C


MA and PhD: University of California, Riverside


Areas of Interest & Expertise
  • Middle English literature

  • Medical humanities

  • Disability studies

  • Manuscript studies

  • History of medicine

Selected Publications
  • "'Rede hit Sofft': John Audelay's Practice of Care." forthcoming, Journal of English and Germanic Philology 122.1 (2023).

  • “Opening the Medieval Folding Almanac.” Exemplaria 30.1: 49-65 (2018).

Selected Conference Presentations
  • "A Poisoning at St. Sofia." Sewanee Medieval Colloquium, Sewanee, TN, April 2021.

  • “‘Rede hit sofft’: Durative Healthcare in the Life and Poetry of John Audelay.” International Medieval Congress, Leeds, UK, July 2019.

  • “Experience and Reason: The Narrative Remedy Collection of Donatus Antonius in BL MS Harley 4349.” Marco Manuscript Workshop, Knoxville, TN, February 2019.

  • “(Im)practical Magic: Middle English Recipe Compendiums and Everyday Recreation.” New Chaucer Society, Toronto, Canada, July 2018.

  • “‘A gracious remedé’: John Audelay’s Didactic Prescriptions.” International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, MI, May 2018.

Awards and Recognition
  • Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship (2019-2020)

  • Evelyn S. Nation Fellow in the History of Medicine (Huntington Library, 2019)

  • Andrew Vincent White and Florence Wales White Scholarship in the Medical Humanities (University of California Humanities Research Institute, 2019; declined)

  • Schallek Award (Medieval Academy of America and Richard III Society, 2019)

  • Foremothers Fellow (Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, 2018-2019)

  • Humanities Research Grant (UC Riverside Center for Ideas and Society, 2018 & 2019)

Current Research

My research focuses on the intersection of literature and medicine in late medieval England. Approaching literary production and healthcare as entangled practices, my work explores the way medieval authors--particularly those who were ill or impaired--made sense of their own bodily suffering. I'm also interested in the way that medical writers drew on literary techniques in order to communicate their experiences of practice, and in the role of the material manuscript in the circulation of these accounts. My monograph project, tentatively titled Bedwritten: Middle English Medicine and the Ailing Author, focuses on this intersection in work by John "the Blind" Audelay, Julian of Norwich, and Thomas Hoccleve, as well as in the medical manuscripts that shaped everyday life in the Middle Ages.

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