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Tess Wingard
Lecturer in Late Medieval History



BA, MA, PhD (York)

Tess Wingard is a Lecturer in Late Medieval History in the History Department and the Centre for Medieval Studies, specialising in gender and sexuality in late medieval Europe. She is currently the co-convener for the Ideology, Society, and Medieval Religion seminar series.



  • Disease (final year Comparative Histories module)




My research is located at the intersection of social and cultural history. I am interested in the interactions between knowledge and power in relation to gender and sexuality in late medieval Europe. I explore how philosophical, legal and literary debates around sexuality informed how institutions such as the Church and civic and national governments intervened in the sexual lives of everyday people, as well as the relationship between ‘elite’ and ‘popular’ discourses around gender and sexuality. I am especially interested in the influence of medieval notions of Nature, human-animal difference and monstrosity on these discourses. I am also interested in theoretical approaches to the study of medieval sexuality, drawing on work in queer studies, queer ecology, ecofeminism and animal studies. My current research project assesses the impact of the Black Death on the regulation of sexual behaviour through the English church courts.

My doctoral research explored the role of representations of animals in the development of new ideologies of sexuality in late medieval western Europe. I am currently revising my thesis for publication as a monograph, provisionally titled Unclean Beasts: Sex, Animality, and the Invention of Heteronormativity, 1200-1550.

Contact details

Dr Tess Wingard
Lecturer in Late Medieval History
University of York
King's Manor, K/G86

Student hours