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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages

 

Dr Elizabeth Drayson

Dr Elizabeth Drayson
Position(s): 
Lorna Close Fellow in Spanish at Murray Edwards College
College Lecturer in Spanish and Director of Studies for MML, Peterhouse
Affiliated Lecturer, Spanish and Portuguese Section
Department/Section: 
Spanish & Portuguese
Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages
Contact details: 
Telephone number: 
+44 (0)1223 762 223 (Murray Edwards)
+44 (0)1223 338 246 (Peterhouse)
Location: 

Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages
Raised Faculty Building
University of Cambridge
Sidgwick Avenue
Cambridge
CB3 9DA
United Kingdom

About: 

Please note that Elizabeth Drayson is on sabbatical in Michaelmas term 2018.

Elizabeth Drayson specialises in medieval and early modern Spanish literature and cultural history, and has a particular interest in the Arabic, Jewish, and Christian cultures of medieval and Golden Age Spain, as well as in the relationship between medieval literature, art and film. Her publications include the first translation and edition of Juan Ruiz's Libro de buen amor to appear in England (Everyman edition), as well as essays and articles on the Libro de buen amor, Berceo and the Poema de mio Çid. She is the author of The King and the Whore: King Roderick and La Cava, The New Middle Ages series, (London and New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2007) which charts the reception of the legend of Roderick, last Visigothic king of Spain. Elizabeth has published several articles on the legend in medieval and early modern chronicles and early art, as well as giving numerous conference papers on the subject. Her monograph, The Lead Books of Granada, Early Modern History series (Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan, 2013, paperback, 2016) evaluates the cultural status and importance of the polyvalent, ambiguous artefacts known as the lead books, which were discovered on a hillside in late sixteenth-century Granada and embody many of the dualities and paradoxes inherent in the racial and religious dilemmas of Early Modern Spain. 'Her latest book The Moor’s Last Stand: how seven centuries of Muslim rule in Spain came to an end (London: Profile Books, 2017) charts the life and times of Boabdil, last Muslim king of Granada, and has been reviewed in The Times, Sunday Times and The Guardian.  This book appeared in paperback in 2018. Elizabeth’s current book project is a history of the city of Granada, which will be published as a monograph, Granada: Spain’s Lost Paradise, by Head of Zeus in 2020.

In March 2015 she organized two events at the Senate House London and Murray Edwards College, Cambridge on the Lead Books of Granada, as well as the Norman MacColl Symposium in April 2011 on the subject of 'Sites of Power: Granada as cultural icon', held at Clare College. The academic papers given at the symposium are available as an audio podcast at http://www.backdoorbroadcasting.net/2011/04/sites-of-power-the-city-of-Granada-as-cultural-icon/.  

Elizabeth has also written a novel The Menorah, which contains a fictional reworking of the Libro de buen amor, is available under the pseudonym Gardner Drayson, at http://www.lulu.com

Teaching interests: 
  • Medieval and early modern Spanish literature and cultural history
  • Representations of medieval and early modern Spanish life and literature on film
  • Translation
Research interests: 
  • Medieval and Early Modern Spanish literature and cultural history
  • Medieval and early modern Spanish culture in visual art and film
Recent research projects: 

Newton Trust CTO research leave award to research and write the story of Boabdil, last Muslim sultan of Granada.

Published works: 

Selected publications:

The Moor’s Last Stand: how seven centuries of Muslim rule in Spain came to an end (London: Profile Books, 2017, paperback, 2018).

The Lead Books of Granada, Early Modern History: Society and Culture series (New York and Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan, 2013).

The King and the Whore: King Roderick and La Cava, The New Middle Ages series (New York and Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan, 2007). Shortlisted for the La Corónica book prize 2008.

The Book of Good Love, Juan Ruiz, Archpriest of Hita, new English translation and critical introduction, notes and bibliography, Everyman Paperbacks, (London: Orion, 1999).

Selected recent articles and essays:

‘Trickery and truth: Spain’s Achilles heel in the time of Cervantes’ in Cervantes – Shakespeare 1616 – 2016: Contexto. Influencia. Relación,eds. José Manuel González, José María Ferri and María del Carmen Irles (Kassel: Ediciones Reichenberger, 2017), pp. 263 – 278. 

‘“Como pella a las dueñas, tomelo quien podiere”: anacronismo y representación en las adaptaciones cinematográficas del Libro de buen amor dirigidas por Tomás Aznar y Jaime Bayarri’, Juan Ruiz, Arcipreste de Hita, y el “Libro de buen amor”: congreso homenaje a Alberto Blecua (Alcalá la Real: Ayuntamiento, 2014), pp. 63-72.

‘Reinventing the legend of King Roderick: Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda’s Egilona’, Romance Studies, Vol. 32 No. 4, November 2014, pp. 259–68.

‘Possible sources for the Introduction to Berceo’s Milagros de nuestraSeñora’, repr. in Classical and Medieval Literary Criticism, Vol. ‘Berceo’,(Columbia, South Carolina: Layman Poupard Publishing).

‘From Text to Image and Film: two visual recreations of Lazarillo de Tormes by Francisco Goya and Fernando Fernán Gómez’ in Literature and Interarts: Critical essays, ed. Inmaculada Medina Barco (Universidad de la Rioja, 2013), pp. 145 – 162.

‘Del texto medieval a la gran pantalla: El Cid entre historia y leyenda’,Fábula: Revista literaria de la Universidad de la Rioja, 31, Otoño-Invierno 2011, pp. 58-62.

‘The Latin commentary tradition and Stanza 70 of the Libro de buen amor: notes on a possible source’, La Corónica, Vol. 38.2, Spring 2010, pp. 27 – 41.