Amy Nelson

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Year Matriculated into Ph.D. Program


Areas of Interest

Monastic History, Cultural History of Central Europe


B.A., Concordia College ; M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School; M.M.S., University of Notre Dame


Amy is interested in how communal religious identities come to be ideologically understood as well as practically maintained. Her work thus highlights the interactions between monastic women, patrons, and their local cultural contexts. She is currently working on her Ph.D. Dissertation, “Cultivating Communities: The Society and Spirituality of Premonstratensian Women and their Patrons in Medieval Central Europe” (Dr. Prof. John Van Engen, Adviser). Topical interests include death and memorialization practices, material culture, and saints' cults.

Recent Scholarly Activity

  • Fulbright U.S. Student Program, Austrian-American Educational Commission/ U.S. Fulbright Commission. Host Institution: Institut für Österreichische Geschictsforschung, Universität Wien, Vienna, Austria (2014-2015)

  • Writing and Rhetoric Graduate Teaching Assistantship, University of Notre Dame (2016-2017)

  • Nanovic Institute for European Studies Graduate Travel and Research Grant (2013)

  • Conference Paper, "'Multiple Options' for Christian Expression by Noble Women in Late Medieval Central Europe." Religious Culture and Social Change in Central Europe ca. 1400-1600. Center for Austrian Studies, University of Minnesota, (April 1-3) (2016)

  • Conference Paper, "‘Soror Nostra’: Community and Religious Identity Among Female Premonstratensians and Their Patrons.” Annual Meeting of the Medieval Academy of America. Boston, MA (February 25-27) (2016)

  • Conference Paper, “The Ideal of Community and Communal Identity in the Dominican Sister Books.” Alltags-und Vorstellungswelten in monastischen Texten des 13. Jahrhunderts. Heidelberger Akademie der Wissenschaften, Heidelberg, Germany (April 9-10) (2015)

Online Profile