Jitske Jasperse

Dr. Jitske Jasperse

Antonio López García, Figuras en una casa, 1967. Museu Fundación Juan March, de Palma. Photo: Michael Pouwels.

Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin
Professur für Bildkulturen des Mittelalters

Raum 3.22
Tel.: 030.2093-66205
Fax: 030.2093-66204


At the Institut für Kunst- und Bildgeschichte at the Humboldt-Universität I am part of “Bildkulturen des Mittelalters” led by Prof. Kathrin Müller.

My book project Medieval Women, Material Culture, and Power: Matilda Plantagenet and her Sisters is published with Arc Humanities Press and appears February 2020. See https://www.aup.nl/en/book/9781641891455/medieval-women-material-culture-and-power.

At present I am working on the project Vrouwen en Kunst (“Women and Art,” working title) and I am preparing a project on the invisibilty of medieval artefacts in which explore how and why medieval objects were hidden from sight, even though their iconography, materiality, and performative qualities suggest that they were designed to be displayed. Together with Karen Dempsey I am the editor of Small Things of Greater Importance: Exploring the Sensory Relationship of Medieval People and Objects, a special issue of Das Mittelalter. Perspektiven mediävistischer Forschung (2020).

Office Hours (Sprechstunde)

Tuesday, 09.00-10.00 (please make an appointment by email)

Curriculum Vitae

My art historical path started in Amsterdam, where I studied at the Vrije Universiteit (BA) and University of Amsterdam (MA). At the University of Amsterdam I wrote my dissertation about Matilda of Saxony (wife of Henry the Lion), which I defended in 2013. I was a lecturer in the Department of Art History at the University of Amsterdam (2007-2015). In 2015 I received the prestigious Juan de la Cierva-Formación, a two-year postdoctoral fellowship funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitivity. This brought me to Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas in Madrid (2016-2018), where I participated in Therese Martin’s project “The Medieval Treasury across Frontiers and Generations: The Kingdom of León-Castilla in the Context of Muslim-Christian Interchange, c. 1050-1200.” Currently I am  involved in The Medieval Iberian Treasury in Context: Collections, Connections, and Representations on the Peninsula and Beyond (PI Therese Martin, 2019-2022), which addresses broad socio-cultural questions concerning the role of sumptuary collections as evidence of contacts both within and beyond Iberia during the central Middle Ages. The collection at San Isidoro de León offers an opportunity for reading evidence over time, weighing the sometimes contradictory conclusions from documentary or visual sources against scientific analysis. In this project, art historians, archaeologists, curators, and historians examine the geographically charged nature of objects and investigate women as vectors of cultural exchange. In the project I will focus on connections with Poland and the Germanic lands of the Holy Roman Empire, tracing the networks of moving women, including Richeza of Poland (d. 1185), second wife of Alfonso VII of León-Castile. At the king’s death, Richeza married the count of Provence and, widowed once again, she went on to marry the count of Eberstein. What might Richeza have brought with her to León, or taken from Iberia to her new homes in French and Germanic lands?


Winter semester 2019/2020: Seminar “Oustiders in Medieval Art” (AGNES, course number 533621) and Übung vor Orginalen “Unraveling the Medieval Mantle: Iconography, Medium, Materiality” (AGNES, course number 533651).

Summer semester 2019: Seminar “(In)visible Medieval Artefacts” (AGNES, course number 533616).

Winter semester 2018/2019: Research leave.

Summer semester 2018: Seminar “Gendering the Master Narrative: Patrons and Makers, Sinners and Saints in Medieval Art” (AGNES, course number 533624).



Medieval Women, Material Culture, and Power: Matilda Plantagenet and her Sisters (Leeds: Arc Humanities Press, 2020). The book will also appear Open Access, please check https://arc-humanities.org/products/m-77101-114115-80-7415/

Recent articles:

“Matilda of Saxony’s Luxury Objects in Motion: Salving the Wounds of Conflict” in Moving Women, Moving Objects 300-1500, eds. Tracy Chapman Hamilton and Mariah Proctor-Tiffany (Leiden: Brill, 2019), 83-104. The link contains an order form with a discount code valid until 31 December 2019.

Between León and the Levant: The Infanta Sancha’s Portable Altar as Material Evidence for Medieval History.” The Medieval Iberian Treasury in the Context of Cultural Interchange, ed. Therese Martin, special issue, Medieval Encounters (2019): 124-149.

“Medium en Macht in de Middeleeuwen,” Leidschrift: Historisch Tijdschrift 34, no. 1 (2019): 75-91. Website

Manly Minds in Female Bodies: Three Women and their Power through Coins and Seals,” Memoria, género y poder en la Edad Media, ed. Ana Rodríguez, special issue, Arenal. Revista de historia de las mujeres 25, no. 2 (2018), 295-321.

“Visualizing Dynastic Desire: The Twelfth-Century Gospel Book of Henry and Matilda,” Studies in Iconography 39 (2018), 135-166.

Women, Courtly Display and Gifts in the Rolandslied and the Chanson de Roland,” Mediaevistik. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Medieval Research 30 (2017), 125-141.

Matilda, Leonor and Joanna: The Plantagenet Sisters and the Display of Dynastic Connections through Material Culture,” Journal of Medieval History 43, no. 4 (2017), 523-547. It is Feminae Article of the Month (November 2018).

“To Have and to Hold: Coins and Seals as Evidence for Motherly Authority,” in Royal Mothers and Their Ruling Children. Wielding Political Authority from Antiquity to the Early Modern Era, eds. Carey Fleiner and Elena Woodacre (Palgrave Macmillan: Basingstoke, 2015), 83-104.

 “A Coin Bearing Testimony to Duchess Matilda as Consors Regni,” Haskins Society Journal 26 (2014 appeared in 2015), 169-190.

Recent reviews:

“Penelope Nash, Empress Adelheid and Countess Matilda: Medieval Female Rulership and the Foundations of European Society. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017,” Royal Studies Journal 5 (2018), 185-187.

“Martin Homza, Mulieres suadentes – Persuasive Women: Female Royal Saints in Medieval East Central and Eastern Europe. East Central and Eastern Europe in the Middle Ages, 450–1450, 42. Leiden and Boston: Brill, 2017,” Mediaevistik. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Medieval Research 30 (2018), 298-300.

“Linda E. Mitchell, Joan de Valence: The Life and Influence of a Thirteenth-Century Noblewoman. Palgrave Macmillan: New York, 2016,” Medieval Feminist Forum: A Journal of Gender and Sexuality 52, no. 1 (2016), 110-112.

“Mary Dockray-Miller, The Books and Life of Judith of Flanders. Farnham: Ashgate, 2015,” Royal Studies Journal 3, no. 1 (2016), 86-87.

“Hans Eberhard Mayer and Claudia Sode, Die Siegel der Lateinische Könige von Jerusalem, Monumenta Germaniae Historica Schriften, Band 66, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 2014,” The Medieval Review, 2015.09.19.

Work in progress:

“The Poetics of Space and Gender: Loss and Triumph in the Rolandslied,” in Gewalt, Krieg und Gender im Mittelalter, ed. Amalie Fößel (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Verlag, 2018).

“Is It All about Empire? The Angevins through the Lens of Gift Giving,” in The Angevin Empire. New Interpretations, eds. Stephen Church and Matthew Strickland (Woodbridge: Boydell & Brewer, 2019).

Other Activities

I serve on the Medieval Academy of America’s Leeds Program Committee (https://medievalacademy.site-ym.com/?page=LeedsCommittee) and on the editorial board of CARMEN Monographs and Studies, Arc Humanities Press (https://arc-humanities.org/our-series/arc/cms/).


Sancha trajo a León trozos de la cuna y la mesa de Jesús, Diario de León 12.09.2018.

Fragmentos de la cuna y la mesa de Jesús que trajo infanta Sancha a León, Castilla y León Televisión 18.09.2018