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Cambridge AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership - Student Profiles



I completed my Bachelor’s degree in History at the University of Exeter and my MPhil in the department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic at the University of Cambridge.

In my master’s thesis, I looked at the late medieval Icelandic romance Viktors saga ok Blávus. I suggested how the saga explored the relationship between Iceland and continental Europe by showing how its author adapted its various sources and played with literary genre. I also considered the manuscript contexts in which the text is preserved and suggested the plurality with which the saga can be interpreted.

Following from this, in my PhD research I will continue to work on contextualising the literature of late medieval Iceland, taking the fifteenth-century manuscript AM 589f 4to as my case study. The manuscript contains two fornaldarsögur: Sturlaugs saga Starfsama and Göngu-Hrólfs saga. Looking at these texts from historical, literary and material philological perspectives, I intend to consider questions relating to the boundaries between history and fiction, the changing meaning of the pagan past in Christian Iceland, and the social and political functions of literature during this period.


Department: Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic
Supervisor: Dr Judy Quinn
College: King's
AHRC subject area: Languages and Literature, History
Title of thesis: (provisional) A Study of AM 589f 4to
 Alisa  Valpola-Walker