University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
http://www.umn.edu/
612-625-5000

Geraldine Heng, November 2007

Geraldine Heng is Director of the Medieval Studies Program and Associate Professor of English at the University of Texas at Austin. She has published on feminist theory, cultural politics, sexuality, and race in the medieval period and in the contemporary world. She is also Founder and Co-director of the Global Middle Ages Project (G-MAP), the Mappamundi cybernetic initiatives, and the Scholarly Community for the Globalization of the Middle Ages (SCGMA).

The interview can also be downloaded as a video podcast (118.8 MB) or as an audio file (.mp3 – 53.4 MB).

Heng’s research focuses on literary, cultural, and social encounters between worlds, and webs of exchange and negotiation between communities and cultures, particularly when transacted through issues of gender, race, sexuality, and religion. She is especially interested in medieval Europe’s discoveries and rediscoveries of Asia and Africa. Her book, Empire of Magic: Medieval Romance and the Politics of Cultural Fantasy, traces the development of a medieval literary genre—European romance, and, in particular, the King Arthur legend—in response to the traumas of the crusades and crusading history, and Europe’s myriad encounters with the East. She is completing two books: a book theorizing premodern race and racial-religious difference, and a book on medieval England as a global site, traced through its literature.

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