Meet Dr. Natalie Van Deusen!

14 October 2020

Meet Dr. Natalie Van Deusen! 


1. Where are you from and how did you end up in your field? 
I am from a small town in southern Minnesota. I grew up speaking Danish, so when I began my undergraduate degree, I declared a major in Scandinavian Studies, which I paired with another major in Religious Studies. I became fascinated by life in the Middle Ages, and especially the role of women in religion, religious literature, and religious communities in medieval Scandinavia. I decided to continue studying this topic at the graduate level, and did my doctoral research on the Old Norse-Icelandic legend of Martha and Mary Magdalen. I completed my PhD in Scandinavian Studies (with a PhD minor in Medieval Studies) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012. 

2. What is your current area of research? 

I am finishing a book on the composition and transmission of poetry on St. Agnes in post-Reformation Iceland. I also hold a SSHRC Insight Development Grant for a new research project, entitled "'Completely Healed': Miracles, Cures, and Constructions of Disability in the Old Norse-Icelandic Sagas of Bishops."



3. What are your hobbies? 

I enjoy reading, binge-watching TV series on Netflix, and spending time with my husband and our two daughters (ages 7 and 10). We love to travel (especially to Iceland!) and spend time outdoors. In non-COVID times, I teach group exercises classes (spin and BodyPump), but right now I am enjoying doing yoga at home and taking long walks around the neighbourhood with my dog. 



4. What advice would you give incoming students? 

Take a variety of courses, and when you find the thing you are passionate about, pursue it as your major. This will make your university experience so much more enriching and enjoyable!



Thank you Dr. Van Deusen!