James R. Tomlinson

Doctoral Research Fellow
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Mobile phone +47 95142572
Room 313
Visiting address Sem Sælands vei 2 ZEB-building 0371 OSLO
Postal address P.O. Box 1017 0315 OSLO

Academic interests

  • Music History
  • Medieval Studies
  • Liturgy
  • Palaeography
  • History of Art


My PhD project addresses three underdeveloped facets of the historically important but neglected corpus of fourteenth-century polyphony in England: (1) the practices and contexts of its performance; (2) the devotional nature of polyphonic texts and their relationship with analogous performative and literary cultures; (3) the interrelationship between performance contexts and performing resources. I ask: how were musical and poetic texts realised in performance? How does institutional evidence provide contexts for the performance of motets? How do performative and textual elements connect musical compositions to their cultural context, and how might analogues (monophonic song, liturgical drama, devotional festivities) provide evidence for dramatic scenae in religious contexts? Finally, to what extent were the devotional ideals of medieval religious communities realised in motet performance and related to monastic models of conviviality?


  • MSt in Medieval Studies, Magdalen College, University of Oxford, UK
  • BA in Music, The Queen's College, University of Oxford, UK
  • Artistic Director of Fount & Origin (Medieval Music Vocal Ensemble)


Tags: Musicology, Music History, Music Theory, Medieval Studies, Palaeography, Liturgy
Published Sep. 9, 2021 1:13 PM - Last modified Oct. 20, 2021 1:30 AM