E. Ann Matter

[photo of Prof. Matter]
William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Religious Studies
Contact Information
215 898-8614
Office Location: 
224 Cohen Hall

She wasnamed the first R. Jean Brownlee Endowed Term Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Matter is a Lindback Award-winning teacher and a widely published scholar whose work encompasses both the history of the interpretation of the Bible from the Middle Ages to the present, and studies of women in early modern Italy. Her most recent books include two from the University of Pennsylvania Press, The Voice of My Beloved: The Song of Songs in Western Medieval Christianity (1990), and Creative Women in Medieval and Early Modern Italy (edited with John Coakley, 1994). She is also known for her critical edition of Paschasii Radiberti's De partu Virginis (1985) and is the author of some 40 articles and chapters in journals and books published here and abroad. A 1971 alumna of Oberlin College, Dr. Matter took both M.Phil. and M.A. degrees at Yale in 1975, and her Ph.D. there a year later. She joined Penn in 1976 as an assistant professor, became associate professor in 1982, and was promoted to full professor in 1990. Among her other prizes have been Yale's Whiting Fellowship for the Humanities, 1975-76, and two National Endowment for the Humanities Research Fellowships, held in 1979 and 1988. Another major assignment Dr. Matter held at Penn was to direct the Women's Studies Program in 1981-83 and during that time to interview, for the Program's Oral History Project, two women who helped shape women's presence at the University: Dr. Althea Hottel and Dr. R. Jean Brownlee.