LATEST UPDATE: APPLY NOW for online course, Bridging the Great Divide: the Jewish-Muslim Encounter

Jessica Tearney-Pearce

PhD Scholar


Jessica was awarded the Woolf Institute Cambridge Scholarship to commence her PhD studies in 2016, and is affiliated to St John's College and the Faculty of History at the University of Cambridge. Her doctoral research investigates worship, devotional, and ritual practices on ships and related to the sea in the medieval Mediterranean. The project asks: specifically, what superstition, worship and devotion at sea in the medieval Mediterranean looked like, and how particular practices and cult sites evolved out of and were absorbed from older traditions; and generally whether from the evidence for these we can ascertain whether it is possible to speak of such a thing as 'maritime religion' or 'maritime devotion'? More broadly, Jessica is interested in the history of the pre-modern Mediterranean in general, and inter/intra-religious and -cultural interactions and phenomena particularly.

In addition to her contributions to the Woolf Institute, Jessica is the SBR (graduate student society) President at St John's College for 2018–2019, the Assistant Editor of the journal Al-Masaq and the Web Officer for the Society for the Medieval Mediterranean. Originally from New Zealand, Jessica holds a BA, BA (Hons) and MA from the University of Auckland, NZ, and an MA from the Warburg Institute, London. The most important unimportant thing in Jessica's life is watching sport (particularly football) and she regularly blogs about themes connecting sport and religion.

Back to People