Dr Lynette Olson
PhD (University of Toronto), BA (Oberlin College), MSL (Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies)
My particular research field is the history of Early Medieval Europe, c.450-1050 AD, the period which saw the birth of European civilisation, although the later medieval period, to 1500 AD which saw the early growth of Europe, is also within my competence. Interest in the Middle Ages developed during my education at the institutions listed above, with my PhD entailing several periods of doctoral research at the Institute of Cornish Studies in Redruth, Cornwall, UK. From 1978 I was a Lecturer, then Senior Lecturer at the Department of History of the University of Sydney. In 1993 I became an Australian citizen. My research has focused on early medieval Cornwall and now Brittany, but my interests are Europe-wide. I like to use archaeological research in historical study, have developed an interest in religious change as cultural change, and regard the early Middle Ages as one of the most interesting periods of women's history.
- Medieval Cornwall and Brittany
- Overall history of Europe in the Early Middle Ages
- Christian Conversion of Europe as cultural change
- Dol in Brittany as a religious, political and cultural centre, to 1199 A.D. (a monograph in preparation)
The Early Middle Ages: The Birth of Europe (Palgrave, 2006)
Early Monasteries in Cornwall, Studies in Celtic History, 11, Woodbridge, 1989
'A Tenth-Century List of Cornish Parochial Saints', Cambridge Medieval Celtic Studies, 12, Winter, 1986, 33-71 (co-authored with O. J. Padel)
'Lammana, West Looe; C. K. Croft Andrew's Excavations of the Chapel and Monks House, 1935-6', Cornish Archaeology, 33, 1994, pp. 96-129 (co-authored with Cathy O'Mahoney, Ann Preston-Jones and Peter Rose)
Religious Change, Conversion and Culture, Sydney, 1996 (edited conference proceedings, including my 'The Conversion of the Visigoths and Bulgarians Compared', pp. 22-32.)
'An Ancient Cathedral of Cornwall? Excavated Remains East of St Germans Church', Cornish Archaeology, 37-8, 1998-9, pp. 153-69 (co-authored with Ann Preston-Jones).
'The Applicability of the Horton Thesis of African Conversion to the Christian Conversion of Medieval Europe', in Carole M. Cusack and Peter Oldmeadow (eds), This Immense Panorama: Studies in Honour of Eric J. Sharpe, Sydney Studies in Religion, 2, 1999, pp. 79-88.
'The Early Hagiography of Saint Samson of Dol', in Geraint Evans, Bernard Martin and Jonathan M. Wooding (eds), Origins and Revivals: Proceedings of the First Australian Conference of Celtic Studies, Sydney Series in Celtic Studies, 3, 2000, pp. 123-33.
‘British and Irish Colonial Churches: an Alternative Model to the “Celtic Church”’, in Pamela O’Neill (ed.), Nation and Federation in the Celtic World, Sydney Series in Celtic Studies, 6, Sydney, 2003, pp. 298-303.
‘The Absorption of Cornwall into Anglo-Saxon England’, in Pamela O’Neill (ed.), Between Intrusions: Britain and Ireland between the Romans and the Normans, Sydney Series in Celtic Studies, 7, 2004, pp. 94-102.
Various papers for the following:
Humanities Research Centre, Australian National University
International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo (invited paper)
Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Renaissance Studies
Australasian Historians of Medieval and Early Modern Europe
The Society for Medieval Archaeology (invited paper)
Australian Association for Byzantine Studies
Department of History, University of Sydney (Centenary Conference)
Celtic Studies Foundation and Centre for Celtic Studies, University of Sydney
Department of Religious Studies, University of Sydney (Eric J. Sharpe Symposium)
Australian Early Medieval Association (invited plenary).
University of Sydney interdisciplinary conference 'Religious Change, Conversion and Culture' (convenor)
- Vice-President of the University of Sydney Celtic Studies Foundation
- Secretary, Sydney Medieval and Renaissance Group
- Produced a medieval Cornish play four times, including at the Seymour Centre and for the Festival of Sydney