Russian and Eurasian Studies
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

Olson Named 2015-16 Fenwick Fellow


Professor Olson’s research proposal, Sumptuous Literature: Clothing and Governance in Fourteenth Century Italy, is a current book project that investigates the intersection of history and literature in the works of medieval and early modern Italian authors. In her research, she will explore the impact of the displays of new wealth in clothing and jewelry and the restrictions imposed upon such social practices as expressed in the literary works of the Italian middle ages—namely those of Dante, Boccaccio and Petrarch, the “three crowns” of Italian literature. Ultimately, Sumptuous Literature seeks to show how characterizations of fashion in literature shed new light upon our understanding of the simultaneous rise of capitalism and of fashion, and how these phenomena are first articulated in terms of gender and the body.

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