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Dr Stuart Pracy

Lecturer in Medieval History

My research confronts inequity by studying state power, land-lording, violence, and the agency of labourers. To this end, I examine subaltern groups (peasants and the urban poor) in the medieval world and unpick discourses of power, how relations of exploitation were and are legitimized, and local vs. supra-local experiences of state control. Concentrating on medieval England, c. 900-1200 CE, my research counters the dominance of elite sources which overshadow the historical record to find the voices of labourers who actively shaped their local societies. These subaltern experiences are put into conversation with the processes of exclusion which marginalize communities of labourers today, seeking to problematise entrenched historiographical and political narratives.

As an extension of my research and to promote the production of global analyses of pre-modern labourers—an endeavour beyond the reach of any individual—I founded the Global Medieval Peasants Research Network with the mission to foster international discourse on peasants from the across the world and establish an innovative global partnership.

Biography

I began my current role as a Lecturer in Medieval History at the University of Exeter in the spring of 2021, after completing a PhD at the University of Manchester under the supervision of Drs Charles Insley and Paul Oldfield.