About Jesus College/Our community/ People
Professor Elena Lombardi

Roles and subjects

Lecturer in Italian



Professor Elena Lombardi is Lecturer in Italian at Jesus College and a Fellow of Balliol College.

Academic Background

Laurea (Pavia), PhD (New York)

Undergraduate degree: Laurea in Lettere, University of Pavia, with a thesis on the Romantic Poet Ugo Foscolo.
PhD: New York University, with a dissertation on Dante and the medieval theory of language.
I was Assistant Professor in Italian Studies at McGill University (Montreal, Canada, 2000-2005) and Senior Lecturer in the School of Modern Languages at the University of Bristol (2006-12).

Undergraduate Teaching

Dante, Early Italian Poetry, Medieval Studies.

Postgraduate Teaching


Research Interests

Concepts of language and desire in the Middle Ages; medieval poetics; ideas of the book in medieval times; the Renaissance epic-chivalric poem.

Selected Publications


  1. Imagining the Woman Reader in the Age of Dante. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018.
  2. The Wings of the Doves. Love and Desire in the Dante and Medieval Culture. Montreal: McGill Queens University Press, 2012.
  3. The Syntax of Desire. Language and Love in Augustine, the Modistae, Dante. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2007.


Subject notes for courses taught at Jesus College:

See also Faculty of Modern Languages (Italian) website.