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Photo: Annette Hornischer

Assistant Professor of History, Fordham University, New York

Nina Maria Gorrissen Fellow in History - Class of Fall 2016

Alex Novikoff teaches medieval history at Fordham University, where he also serves as the undergraduate chair of the Center for Medieval Studies. He earned his PhD from the University of Pennsylvania, MPhil from Cambridge University, MA from the University of York, and BA from New York University. He is also a graduate of the LaGuardia High School of Music and Art and Performing Arts, and a visiting professor at the Juilliard School of Music and Franklin University in Switzerland. His work has been supported by the Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among other organizations. Novikoff takes a wide-lens view of medieval cultural life between 1100 and 1500. His research simultaneously embraces the scholastic culture of the High Middle Ages, Jewish-Christian-Muslim relations, and the many interconnections between pedagogy and performance practice.


Novikoff’s first book, The Medieval Culture of Disputation: Pedagogy, Practice, and Performance (Pennsylvania, 2013), traces the origins of scholastic disputation from the rhetorical traditions of antiquity and the dialogue genre of the early Middle Ages through the creation of an international network of university-educated scholars and debaters. He demonstrates how the formal practice of debate contributed not only to learning within the universities, but also to various forms of cultural production beyond the ivory tower, as scholars strove to carry their pedagogical techniques into the wider world. Novikoff is also the editor of The Twelfth-Century Renaissance: A Reader (Toronto, 2016), and the translator of Jean-Claude Schmitt’s The Conversion of Herman the Jew: Autobiography, History, and Fiction in the Twelfth Century (Pennsylvania, 2010).

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