Sarah-Grace Heller

Sarah-Grace Heller

Sarah-Grace Heller

Department of French and Italian

Areas of Expertise

  • French and Occitan medieval literature


  • M.A. University of Minnesota (1996)
  • Ph.D. University of Minnesota (2000)
  • B.A. Grinnell College (1993)

Professor Heller (Ph.D. University of Minnesota) specializes in French and Occitan medieval literature. She has published a book, Fashion in Medieval France (Boydell & Brewer, 2007), and articles on the Roman de la Rose, sumptuary laws, and the popular literature of the crusades. She is currently working on an Illustrated History of Medieval Fashion.

Selected Publications:

Fashion in Medieval France (Boydell and Brewer, Suffolk, Eng.: April, 2007).

“Surprisingly Historical Women in the Old French Crusade Cycle,” in Jana Schulman and Sally Poor, eds., Women and Medieval Epic: Gender, Genre, and the Limits of Epic Masculinity (New York: Palgrave/ Macmillan, 2007), pp. 41-66.

“Anxiety, Hierarchy, and Appearance in Thirteenth-Century Sumptuary Laws and the Romance of the Rose” French Historical Studies 27.2 (spring 2004): 311-348.

“Sumptuary Legislation in Thirteenth-Century France, Languedoc and Italy: Limiting Yardage and Changes of Clothes,” in E. Jane Burns, ed., Medieval Fabrications: Dress Textiles, Clothwork, and Other Cultural Imaginings (New York: St. Martin’s Press/ Palgrave, 2004), pp. 181-207.

“Fashion in French Crusade Literature: Desiring Infidel Textiles,” in Désirée Koslin and Janet Snyder, eds., Encountering Medieval Textiles and Dress: Objects, Texts, Images (New York: St. Martin’s Press/ Palgrave, 2002), pp. 104-119.

“Light as Glamour: The Luminescent Ideal of Beauty in the Roman de la Rose” in Speculum vol. 76, no. 4 (October, 2001), pp. 937-959.

“Fashioning a Woman: The Vernacular Pygmalion in the Roman de la Rose” in Medievalia et Humanistica, vol. 27 (2000) pp. 1-18.

Encyclopedia articles
“Semiotics of Culture” for Concepts, Methods, and Trends in Medieval Studies: a de Gruyter Encyclopaedia, ed. Albrecht Classen. (forthcoming).

“Ovid, Medieval Reception of,” in Women and Gender in Medieval Europe: An Encyclopedia, ed. Margaret Schaus (New York: Routledge, 2006), pp. 627-28.