I want to focus on how we can gender female the maritime world of ships, waterfronts, and coastal communities– a world that scholars have largely populated with adult males– focusing on four questions.
Given the potential importance of famine in medieval England, it is at least surprising that so little has been written on it. If we consider the greatest single famine event of the middle ages, the great famine of the early fourteenth century, a crisis event that may have killed something in the region of 10 per cent of the English population, the degree of historical discussion of this, relative to say investigation of the Black Death, is really quite muted.
Environmental archaeologist and Professor of Archeology at Reading, Dr. Aleks Pluskowski, examined Malbork and several other sites across Eastern and Northern Europe in his recent paper, The Ecology of Crusading: The Environmental Impact of Holy War, Colonisation, and Religious Conversion in the Medieval Baltic. Pluskowski is keenly interested in the impact the Teutonic Knights and Christian colonisation had on the region. His ambitious 4 year project on the ecological changes in this area recently came to a close at the end of 2014.
Local and Traditional on the Millennial Scale: Sustainable Waterfowl Management from Viking Age Iceland
Of sagas and sheep: Toward a historical anthropology of social change and production for market, subsistence and tribute in early Iceland
The emergence of concentrated settlements in medieval Western Europe: explanatory frameworks in the historiography
There is now a general scholarly consensus that the concentration of rural people into settlements in Western Europe (as opposed to dispersed or scattered habitations across the countryside) occurred in various stages between the eighth and twelfth centuries, though with regional divergences in precise timing, speed, formation, and intensity.