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Introducing Dr. Emily Tuttle

Published December 2, 2023

Congratulations to Emily M. Tuttle, who defended her dissertation “Documenting Domesticity: An Examination of the Home in Late Medieval Yorkshire, England” under the direction of Dr. Benjamin Dodds in the Department of History and Dr. Erika Loic in the Department of Art History. Emily is a full-time instructor of art history and gallery director at Limestone University in Gaffney, South Carolina. She also teaches at nearby Winthrop University and Wofford College.

Emily’s dissertation research considers the home and household objects and how they represent individual and familial identity that is developed through social constructs. Identities established through the medieval domicile are recorded in three document types that can recall kinship, religious ideologies, economic inclinations, and gender roles. These document types include notary sources, surviving artifacts, and two-dimensional representations of the home. Emily’s dissertation defines these document types and then demonstrates how they can be used to understand how everyday objects in the home reflect the cultural norms in medieval Yorkshire, England from 1430 to 1540. Emily’s work addresses the need in studies on medieval domesticity to rely not on one, but a variety of source types, and ultimately breaks down barriers in the field through an interdisciplinary approach that is not dependent on a single source type or method of analysis.

Her advisor Dr. Dodds writes:

“Emily’s excellent doctoral dissertation on late-medieval homes and the relationship between medieval people and domestic objects reflects her remarkable intellectual range. Not only did she draw on documentary sources alongside images, objects and buildings, but she also showed an impressive command of different theoretical approaches. Emily demonstrated that she is a keen archival scholar but also that she is acutely aware of the way art history is presented to wider audiences in surviving buildings and museums. What is more, Emily is as comfortable sharing her research findings with demanding international audiences of art historians and historians as she is communicating her passion for art history to hundreds of students.”

Emily’s research was made possible through FSU grants and fellowships, including the Patrica Rose Fellowship, the Paula Gerson Research Grant, the Helen J. Beard Conference Travel Grant, and the Penelope Mason Travel Grant. Emily writes,

“Because of the generosity of the Art History Department, I was able to make several trips to England to examine written documents housed at the Borthwick Archives, the York Minster Archives, the National Archives in Kew, and examine medieval artifacts and surviving homes at Barley Hall, The Yorkshire Museum, and Conisbrough Castle. I look forward to continuing my research on the connection between the medieval home and society, as well as projects concerning modern viewership of medieval domestic heritage sites.”

While pursuing her doctoral degree, Emily maintained multiple teaching positions and in the past three years, has curated over twenty exhibits in the Limestone University Gallery and Granberry Gallery. She has also presented her research at several conferences, including the International Medieval Congress in Leeds, the Southeastern Medieval Association Annual Conference, and the Public Curatorship of the Medieval Past Symposium hosted by the University of Lincoln, England. She returns to Leeds in July 2024 to present her work on the use of thing theory to highlight the importance of applied arts as documentation. Emily’s recent publication with the Open Library for the Humanities Journal can be accessed here:!.