Department of History

My project in Tübingen explores the relationship between forced movement and punishment in the early medieval west (c.450–c.700 AD). More specifically, it examines a range of penalties – including exile, monastic confinement, and other forms of custodial banishment, such as forced labour and penal servitude – and treats them as a set of interrelated phenomena in which forced movement was an essential outcome of the sentence. Through this innovative and wide-ranging approach, it looks to demonstrate the common penal strategies that underpinned a range of early medieval punishments, but which have largely been overlooked by existing scholarship. The first five months of my fellowship have been spent conducting a thorough review of the primary source material. As part of this process I have compiled two databases, one comprising all the extant legislation that prescribed some form of forced movement upon offenders, and another comprising cases of penal exile documented in non-normative sources. With the data collection stage complete, the rest of my time in Tübingen will be spent analysing the evidence and writing up my findings. In particular, I will be working towards the publication of a monograph, provisionally entitled Exile in the Early Medieval West, 439 – 711, which will draw on the research that I have so far carried out in Tübingen.

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