My past research has fallen into three overlapping categories.
i/ The history of South-Western France and the Plantagenet Empire, in particular its political and religious life. In addition to the article above on the Agenais and my two monographs below, which establish a strongly regional focus for discussing heresy, see the following articles and chapters.
2009. 'Royal protection in Aquitaine and Gascony by c.1000: the public, the private, and the princely'. In: LAMBERT, T. B. and ROLLASON, D., eds., Peace and Protection in the Middle Ages (Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Durham University), 36-59.
2007. 'Reform and the Basque dukes of Gascony: a context for the origins of the Peace of God and the murder of Abbo of Fleury', Early Medieval Europe 15(1), 35-52.
2003. 'The origins of the general court of the Agenais' Nottingham Medieval Studies. 47, 148-67.
1999. 'Innocent III, King John and the Albigensian Crusade (1209-1216)' In ED: Pope Innocent III and his World. (PUB)205-228.
ii/ The history of freedom and slavery/serfdom. This work resulted from a Leverhulme-funded international project into Slavery in which I was involved in a conference in Brazil (2004, p.i. was Prof. Dick Geary), which first interested me in economic approaches to the Middle Ages, but which I have yet had time to pursue except through teaching.
'From Slavery to 'unfreedom' in the western-european high middle ages', in Trabalho Livre/ Trabalho Escravo: Brasil e Europa, Seculos XVIII e XIX, eds. D.C. Libby and J.F. Furtado (Sao Paulo, Annablume 2006), 21-55.
2002. 'The year 1000 and 'those who laboured''. In: FRASSETTO, M., ed., The Year 1000: Religious and Social Response to the Turning of the First Millennium (Palgrave Macmillan). 187-236.
iii/ The history of popular heresy, in particular in South-Western France and 'dualist' heresy. This is the main work for which I am known. In addition to the items above on 'good men' and Waldensians and the sourcebook with LEGLU and RIST, the following fall under this heading…
2016. 'Looking for the 'good men' in Languedoc', in ed. A. Sennis, Cathars in Question. (Boydell & Brewer/York Medieval Press). This challenges some recent historiography concerning the nomenclature of heresy, using narrative and polemical sources, and was an invited paper at a historiographically significant conference on Cathar here.
- Two well received monographs.
2011. Heresy, Crusade and Inquisition in Medieval Quercy (Boydell & Brewer/York Medieval Press).
2005. Heresy in medieval France: Dualism in Aquitaine and the Agenais, 1000-1249 (Boydell & Brewer/ Royal Historical Society).
These established me as a scholar with expertise in both Southern France and high-medieval heresy and popular religiosity. Having exploited not only all source genres but all of the extant sources available for the northern Languedoc specifically in this period - economic, political, clerical, cultural and legal; urban, rural, 'castral' and monastic; plains, river systems and highlands - they already give me a significant amount of transferable knowledge about the sorts of social and economic structures which exist in southern France more widely, and my knowledge of the types of sources available for unlocking them.
- Five other significant and original articles and chapters
2013. 'Evidence for dualism in inquisitorial registers of the 1240s: a contribution to a debate' History, 98(331), 319-345. This was a response to a current debate concerning the origins of heretical beliefs, using witness testimonies.
2012. ''Heresy' in Quercy in the 1240s: authorities and audiences'. In: ANDREW ROACH, ed., Heresy and the Making of European Culture: Medieval and Modern Perspectives (Ashgate). 239-255. This concerned the authorial voices opresent in inquisition depositions.
2006. 'Elite reform and popular heresy in c.1000: "Revitalization Movements" as a model for understanding religious dissidence historically'. In: COOPER, K. and GREGORY J., eds., Elite and Popular Religion (Studies in Church History,vol. 42) Boydell & Brewer for The Ecclesiastical History Society. 41-53. This allowed me to pursue an interest in the psychology of transformative religiosity.
2005. 'Authority and the Cathar heresy in the northern Languedoc'. In: FRASSETTO, M., ed., The Origins of Heresy and Persecution in the Middle Ages: Essays on the Work of R. I. Moore (Brill). This explored structures of authority in northern Languedoc.
2000. 'The letter of Héribert of Périgord as a source for dualist heresy in the society of early eleventh-century Aquitaine' Journal of Medieval History. 26 (4), 313-349. This was my 'break-through' article, which attempted a post-revisionism concerning the geographical spread of dualist heresy.
Apostolic Economics: Heresy and Property in Languedoc, c.1160-c.1300 CE
The major twelfth-century 'popular' religious heresies in western Europe - known as Catharism and Waldensianism - adopted an 'apostolic' lifestyle. That is to say, they rejected all property, whether held individually (like secular people) or collectively (like monks). They begged, in other words, living hand-to-mouth as a point of principle. However, this project suggests that from when they first entered southern France (Languedoc), they abandoned this practice and adopted a new approach because of some very specific local economic characteristics. The rise and fall of four significant forms of heterodox life are discussed in relation to their regional and Biblical influences. Through this, the nature of southern French society itself is illuminated, as are issues concerning heretical movements more widely.