Dr Sig Sønnesyn


  • BS8 1TB

Personal profile

Research interests

I am a historian of European high medieval religious and intellectual culture, its antecedents and wider intellectual geographies, specialising in the religious, moral, and scientific thought of European Latin culture and in cross-cultural relations between Christian, Islamicate and Jewish thought. 

My main research interests focus on the intellectual culture of Western Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries. I am particularly interested in the ways in which Christian intellectual culture in the Latin-dominated part of the Christian world absorbed influences from classical philosophy and Jewish and Islamicate learning. In my published work I have emphasised how monastic intellectual culture in the 12th century incorporated classical and pagan elements by subsuming them into a mode of practice, a comprehensive way of life, in which elements that in purely abstract terms were incompatible in practice could inform a unified notion of the good Christian life. I have also studied how Christian thinkers made sense of Aristotelian natural philosophy and metaphysics in the early period following their translation into Latin. Both of these concerns continue to be central to my current and future work.


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