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Elizabeth Burbridge: Social Studies Teacher and Scholar

Upper School social studies teacher and Middle School Debate Coach Elizabeth Burbridge recently sat down with Beyond the Gate to discuss her background and her recently published essay in Nursing Clio—an open access, peer-reviewed, collaborative blog project that ties historical scholarship to present-day issues related to gender and medicine. Ms. Burbridge's essay, "Dorothy Bruce Weske: Academia and Motherhood in the Mid-Twentieth Century," explored how mothers can continue to produce scholarly work while outside of traditional academia.

Beyond the Gate: How long have you taught social studies at Woodward?

Elizabeth Burbridge: I'm in my first year of teaching at Woodward. I started in August 2016.

BG: Where were you prior to working at the Academy?

EB: Before coming to Woodward, I was finishing my doctorate in medieval history from Fordham University and teaching history at Georgia Perimeter and Southern New Hampshire University. I defended my dissertation titled, "A Re-Interpretation of the Power and Function of Late Medieval English Convocation," in August 2016.

BG: Why did you write about this most interesting subject?

EB: I was curious about what happened to the woman who wrote a very influential book on my dissertation topic. Prior to researching her for my essay, I was unfamiliar with her academic career.

BG: What conferences will you be presenting at this summer? On what topics?

EB: I will be presenting at the conference "After Chichele" at Oxford University at the end of June and the International Medieval Congress 2017 held at the University of Leeds in early July. Both presentations are based on research I conducted for my dissertation—"The Proluctors of Medieval Convocation: Where Do They Fit?" and "The Enduring Influence of Henry Chichele on Late Medieval English Convocation, 1443-1517."

I also produce a history podcast, Footnoting History—a bi-weekly podcast series dedicated to overlooked, unknown, and exciting stories plucked from the footnotes of history. In June, I will be co-leading a workshop on podcasting at The Berkshire Conference of Women Historians at Hofstra University. I started the series with a few of my friends from graduate school in February 2013. We now have more than 6,500 subscribers and, in February 2017, will be releasing our 150th episode. We've been recognized as a history podcast to listen to by CBC Radio, Mentalfloss, The Bello Collective, The Christian Science Monitor, and the American Historical Association's magazine "Perspective."

BG: Any other future plans?

EB: While I'm in the United Kingdom this summer, I plan to speak to publishers regarding my dissertation.

Ms. Burbridge serves on advisory boards for her local city government. She and her husband have three daughters.


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