Dr Matthew S. Champion
Senior Research Fellow
Medieval and Early Modern Studies
Areas of expertise: history; medieval and early modern studies; temporalities; gender studies; history of the senses; sound studies; visual and material culture; history and theory
Location: ACU Melbourne Campus
After studying classics, history and music at the University of Melbourne, I moved to London in 2010 to write my doctorate in medieval history at Queen Mary, University of London. After a Junior Research Fellowship at St Catharine’s College, Cambridge, I took up a tenured Lectureship in Medieval History at Birkbeck, University of London in 2016. In 2020 I returned to Melbourne to a Senior Research Fellowship at the Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry.
My research to date has focused on how time was perceived and experienced from the fourteenth to the sixteenth century. I’m particularly interested in how focusing on temporality alters our understandings of gender, space, affect, mediality and the senses. My first book, The Fullness of Time: Temporalities of the Fifteenth-Century Low Countries was published in late 2017, and was awarded the 2018 Gladstone Prize from the Royal Historical Society. My second book, Peter de Rivo on Chronology and the Calendar was co-authored with colleagues in Leuven and Oxford and addresses fierce debates over chronology and the calendar at the University of Leuven in the late fifteenth century. As part of my wider work on time, I am currently preparing studies on the music of the clock, the relationship of time measurement to the bodies of holy women, and on the temporalities of nostalgia in fifteenth-century northern European secular song.
My current research is supported by two Australian Research Council grants. My ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award ‘The Sounds of Time’ investigates global sound cultures of time between 1300 and 1600. With colleagues at the universities of Melbourne, Manchester and Heidelberg, I am a chief investigator on the ARC Discovery Project ‘Albrecht Dürer’s Material Worlds’, a project which re-examines Dürer’s oeuvre in relation to the material culture of late medieval and early modern Nuremberg.
Beyond my work on time, sound and material and visual culture, I also work on the history of medieval liturgy, religious reform and heresy, particularly the history of witchcraft and demonology, and the history of gender, senses and emotions.
- 2020 with Serena Masolini and C. Philipp E. Nothaft, Peter de Rivo on Chronology and the Calendar, (Leuven University Press).
- 2017 The Fullness of Time: Temporalities of the Fifteenth-Century Low Countries, (University of Chicago Press).
- (2019) "Emotions, Time and Narrative: A Liturgical Frame", in The Routledge History of Emotions in Europe 1100-1700, Susan Broomhall and Andrew Lynch (eds), (Routledge), 30–42.
- (2018) "Black and White: Dominican Reform and Heretical Inversion in the Fifteenth-Century Low Countries", in Making and Breaking the Rules: Discussion, Implementation, and Consequences of Dominican Legislation, Cornelia Linde (ed.), (Oxford University Press) 131–149.
- (2018) "Emotion, Time and Music in Late-Medieval Cambrai", in Performing Emotions in the Medieval and Early Modern World. Philippa Maddern and Joanne McEwan (eds), ( Brepols), 3–26.
- (2015) "Emotions and the Social Order of Time: Constructing History at Louvain’s Carthusian House, 1486–1525", in Gender and Emotions in Medieval and Early Modern Europe: Destroying Order, Structuring Disorder. Susan Broomhall (ed.), (Ashgate), 89–108.
- (2014) "The Presence of an Absence: Jews in Late-Medieval Louvain", in A World Enchanted: Magic and the Margins. Essays Presented in Honour of Charles Zika. Julie Davies and Michael Pickering (eds), (MHJ Research Series), 37–67.
- (2019) with Miranda Stanyon, "Musicalising History", Transactions of the Royal Historical Society 29, 79–103.
- (2019) "The History of Temporalities: An Introduction", Past & Present 243, 247–254.
- (2019) "A Fuller History of Temporalities", Past & Present 243, 255–266.
- (2019) "Sequenza for Notre Dame”, in Forum: Meditations after the Fire: Scholars on Notre Dame, Anna Russakoff, Coll Thrush, Matthew S. Champion, Kacie Morgan, Una McIlvenna, and Constant J. Mews (eds), postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural studies, 10.4, 518–520.
- (2018) ‘“To See above the Moment is Delightful”: Devout Chronologies of the Late Medieval Low Countries’, Viator 49.3, 199–221.
- (2017) ‘Senses at the Altar in Medieval Northern Europe’, Questiones Medii Aevi Novae 22, 127–147.
- (2014) ‘Symbolic Conflict and Ritual Agency at the Vauderie d’Arras’, Cultural History 3.1, 1–26.
- (2011) ‘Crushing the Canon: Nicolas Jacquier’s Response to the Canon Episcopi in the Flagellum haereticorum fascinariorum’, Magic, Witchcraft, Ritual 2, 183–211.
- (2011) ‘Scourging the Temple of God: Towards an Understanding of Nicolas Jacquier’s Flagellum haereticorum fascinariorum (1458)’, Parergon 1, 1–24.
- (2007) ‘The Crucifixion and the World in the Drogo Sacramentary’, Journal of the Australian Early Medieval Association 1, 105–112.
Accolades and awards
- 2021 Australian Research Council Discovery Project (DP210101623), Albrecht Dürer’s Material Worlds, AUD 311,681 (with Jenny Spinks, Charles Zika, Dagmar Eichberger, Sasha Handley, Stefan Hanß and Edward Wouk)
- 2020 Fellow of the Royal Historical Society
- 2019 Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DE200101479), The Sounds of Time, $424,813
- 2018 Royal Historical Society Gladstone Prize
- 2016 Sugden Fellow, Queen’s College, University of Melbourne
- 2016 International Early Career Fellow, ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions
- 2015 Frances A. Yates Fellow, Warburg Institute, London
- 2013 Mellon Fellow, University of Warwick and Newberry Library, Chicago
Editorial and advisory roles
- Co-editor with Joanna Bourke and Sean Brady, Genders and Sexualities in History, Palgrave
- Editorial Board, Bodies and the City, 1100–1800, Routledge
- Editorial Board, Advances in the History of Magic, Witchcraft and Religion, Trivent
- International Advisory Board, Journal of Ecclesiastical History
I have appeared in over 150 media outlets, including Fairfax papers, AAP, and 7 News, and featured on ABC Radio (National, Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Melbourne, Sydney, Regional NSW and Victoria, and Overnights), 2GB (Sydney), and BBC Radio 4. My work has appeared in outlets including the BBC's HistoryExtra, Transactions, for the Royal Historical Society, and The Conversation.