Graduate Students

Abubakar Abdulkadir
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Vanier Scholar
Supervisor: Dr E. Ann McDougall

Thesis Title: The 'Emergence' of the Verse Tradition in Mauritania: Intellectual History and the Culture of Islamics Scholarship in the "Land of Million Poets".

My research - which focuses on Mauritania's scholarly and literary traditions within Islam, Arabic poetry, intellectual religious thought, and examination of scholarly libraries and archives - brings to the fore Saharan perspectives on knowledge production and transmission.

Emad Afkham
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Patrouch

Theisis Title: The Popular Resistance among German Peasant in the Late 16th Century


Jane Allred
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Dominik Wujastyk

Thesis Title: Indology, Grammar and Philosophy of Language in Pre-modern South Asia

Kyla Bansemer
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Beverly Lemire

Thesis Topic/Title: Early Modern Alchemy in England

Samantha Blais
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Elizabeth Piper

Thesis Title: Struggling to Survive: Health Impacts of Hydroelectric Development in Northern Manitoba's Indigenous Communities, 1954-2018

My research analyses the health impacts of hydroelectric development on Misipawistik Cree Nation, Pimicikamak Cree Nation, Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation, O-Pipon-Na-Piwin Cree Nation, Tataskweyk Cree Nation, Fox Lake Cree Nation, and Norway House Cree Nation in northern Manitoba. By examining the impacts of mega-hydroelectric developments in northern Manitoba and focusing on the social determinants of health, meaning the social, economic, cultural and political inequities that impact the health of communities and individuals specifically in Indigenous communities, I will investigate how hydroelectric development has caused the public health crisis that these communities have struggled with for more than half a century. I will also explore what historical dynamics enabled hydroelectric development to occur and continue with little to no consultation in northern Manitoba despite the enormous health impacts.


Deepro Chakraborty
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Dominik Wujastyk

Thesis Title: Critical edition of Jagadhara’s Bālabodhinī on the Kashmiri recension of the Kātantra grammar with the subcommentary of Śitikaṇṭha (Book I)

My research interests include Sanskrit philology and textual criticism, codicology, Sanskrit linguistic traditions, Sanskrit literature, Indo-European linguistics and premodern South Asian history.


Chris Chang-Yen Phillips
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Liza Piper

Thesis Title: Paleontology and Power in Yoho National Park

Chris is fascinated by fossil sites like the Burgess Shale, their ability to connect us with the deep past, and power relationships exposed by negotiations over access and activities there. He loves learning about science, nature, and history, especially through his local history podcast Let's Find Out.


Benjamin Dompreh Darkwa
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Ann McDougal and Dr Liza Piper

Thesis Title: Environment and Disease in the Era of Colonial Gold Coast (1919-1945)

My research interest is in the history of environment and medicine in pre-colonial and colonial Africa. Primarily, my interest concerns how culture, environmental changes and resilience have shaped the course of disease history across Africa. With a prime focus on the colonial era of Gold Coast (contemporary Ghana), my MA thesis seeks to understand how environmental conditions and African tropical diseases impacted colonial authorities and their general responses toward their new environment. Put differently, the work seeks to examine how the perceived notion of West Africa as “The White Man’s Grave” -due to the mass death of missionaries to Africa in the 19th century- shaped the subsequent colonial responses towards the tropical conditions and diseases in Africa during the 20th century.


Ashland Douglas
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Patrouch

Thesis Title: Early Modern Germanic Witchcraft and Occult Practices

My research interests are the cultural history of Germany, in particular the relationship between German peasantry and witchcraft. My prior research has included a case study of the Temple Anneke (Anna Roleffes) in the 17th century, a cunning woman accused of witchcraft, as well as a discussion on apocalypticism and Germany through an examination of Thomas Müntzer and his millennial movement. I am hoping to re-examine early modern Germanic witchcraft experiences through an emotional perspective, emphasizing the importance and power of the history of emotions.


Westin Dowie
Master of Arts - Ancient Societies and Cultures
Supervisor: Dr. Jeremy Rossiter

Thesis Title: Assent of the Gods: The Legitimization of Conflict through Religious Narratives in Antonine and Severan Rome

I am interested in the ways in which religion was used by the elites of the Roman Empire to legitimize their rule and justify imperial policy and conflicts. Through the study of ancient Roman artwork, architecture, and primary sources, I hope to illustrate the importance of religious narratives in the construction of imperial identities in times of conflict and social strife.


Rowan Drisner
Master of Arts - Ancient Societies and Cultures
Supervisor: Dr Adam Kemezis

Thesis Topic: Third Century Roman History

Karrie Englander
Doctor of Philosophy - Classical Archaeology
Supervisor: Dr Margriet Haagsma

Thesis Title: Ancient Greek Medical Practices within the Domestic Sphere during the Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic Periods (600 BCE - 31 BCE)

Ancient Greek medicine was a varying conglomeration of beliefs and practices that changed due to geography, philosophy, time period, gender, and social class. Medical practitioners in the domestic sphere relied on traditional and local knowledge that varied across geographical bounds, dependent on the local resources available. My research is based on existing evidence that can inform us about ancient care for the sick and the local resources available for use in those medical practices. This will include an analysis of the spatial data to find out what it can tell us with regards to the spread of specific medical knowledge.


Michael Gillingham
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Robert Brazeau

Thesis Title/Topic: Irish Literature and Religion

I am tracing depictions of Jews and Judaism in Irish literature from 1800 to the present. I am focusing on how these Jewish characters are constructed as maleficent or beneficent strangers in the context of an emerging Irish Catholic nationalism. Central to this project is the character Leopold Bloom from James Joyce's novel Ulysses. Bloom's identity as a Jew, more prescribed than embraced by Bloom, situates Bloom as a test of various forms of Irish hospitality and cosmopolitanism.

Kate Goodhelpsen
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr James Muir

Thesis Title: Canada's First World War Nursing Sisters


Baktash Goudarzi
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Heather Coleman

Thesis Title: Russia Abroad: Iran and the Russian Diaspora, 1917-1939



Shyler Hendrickson
Master of Arts - Ancient Societies and Cultures
Supervisor: Dr Frances Pownall

Thesis Title: The Hellenistic Successors

My interest is primarily in Social History, with research focussed on examining how elements of race, class, gender, sexuality, ability, and other characteristics intersect and contribute to patriarchal structures of oppression and knowledge in the fourth and fifth centuries. My current research examines how the establishment of a new Hellenistic Culture in the Near East facilitated the emergence of new social and cultural traditions. Previous to this my research has focussed on Alexander the Great and the role his religious fascination played in establishing an enduring cult of personality.


Nathan Hodder
Master of Arts - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Lorne Zelyck

Thesis Topic: Papyrus

Shu-Chen Hsu-Hsiung
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Ryan Dunch

Thesis Title: Chinese Christianity Globalized: the transnational movement of Watchman Nee and Witness Lee and its relationship with the modern Chinese states: 1922-1997

My research interets include the fields of Christianity in China, modern East Asian history, and the globalization of religion. My subject is a Chinese Christian movement variously named as the "Little Flock," the "Local Church," or the Lord's recovery.


Alla Hurska
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr David R. Marples

Thesis Topic: Arctic, Russia, Icebreakers, International trade

Alla Hurska is an Associate Fellow with the International Centre for Policy Studies (Kyiv), and an Analyst in the Jamestown Foundation (Washington, US) and she is pursuing her Masters degree in History at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. Her areas of interest include geo-economic and geopolitical issues in the post-Soviet area, including the Arctic region. Together with Prof. Marples she just published a book "Joseph Stalin. A Reference Guide to His Life and Works".

Samantha Kallen
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Gerhard Ens

Thesis Title: Canada and the Cold War

My general topics of interest include 19th and 20th century Western Canadian history, and Cold War history. In combining these interests, the topic of my Master's thesis project is Alberta in the Cold War, in particular, Alberta civil defense and the construction of bomb shelters. I plan to explore multiple questions over the course of my research, such as how the Cold War affected Alberta, why were bomb shelters constructed, and how were bomb shelters a manifestation of cold War reality or consciousness.

Aditi Khare
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Beverly Lemire

Thesis Title: Industralisation/De-Industralisation of Indian Textile Industry under Early British Colonial System, 1750-1850


Jemima Kiboro
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Felice Lifshitz

Thesis Title: A Sociological Study of the Members of the Roman Catholic Reform Movement Faith Communities Who Attend Masses led by Womenpriests

Catholic women are situated within a patriarchal institution with a long-standing socio-historical context that has historically marginalized women both theologically and sociologically.

This qualitative research therefore aims to explore the Faith Communities of the RCWP reform movement. The rationale behind the study is twofold: First, I want people to understand the agency of women's spiritual authority and the wealth of faith and creativity they can bring to the Church. Assumptions: The study assumes that the followers of the RCWP reform movement value the Roman Catholic traditions hence their decision to remain in the movement rather than joining other reform movements like the Women Church which does not retain any aspect of the Roman Church. 2. The RCWP faith communities believe in the genius of women and so they have hope that the institution might change its structures and admit women into the priesthood


Hannah Kirchenbauer
Master of Arts - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Natalie Van Deusen

Thesis Title: Witchcraft and Magic in Medieval Scandinavian Literature


Kim Knowlton
Master of Arts - Ancient Societies and Cultures
Supervisor: Dr John Harris

I am researching the role of athletics and sport in Ancient Greek culture with a specific interest in the relationship between athletics and philosophy. Athletics, in Ancient Greece, played a prominent role in everyday life and boasted significant cultural influence on many disciplines including war, politics, poetry, music, and philosophy. My current work focuses on Plato's use of athletic metaphor. By reuniting two disciplines, athletics and philosophy, which were historically connected, but are largely considered independent of one another in modern studies of this period, I hope to expand the understanding of both disciplines.


Iaroslav Kovalchuk
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Heather Coleman

Thesis Title: Sovietizations of Western Ukraine: The Communists Party in Galicia and Transcarpathia

My dissertation project compares the establishment of the Communist Party of Ukraine in the two West Ukrainian regions, Galicia and Transcarpathia, which became the new western borderlands of the Soviet Union after World War Two. I see my study as a culturally and socially informed research of the central political institution of the Soviet system, the Party. In general, I am interested in the 20th-century history of the socialist regimes, their legitimacy, and how they connected with society.

Ana Kupinska
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr David R. Marples

Thesis Title: Between Glory and Sorrow: building of the national history narrative in post-maiden Ukraine


Yasemin Kurt
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr James Muir

Thesis Topic: Legal History

Yasemin is interested in the experience of marriage and divorce in Alberta between 1919-1929.

Steven Langois
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr. Elizabeth Piper

Lea Lavy
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr. Stephen Kent

Thesis Title: The Abuse of Women and Children in Hassidic Groups

My research explores ancient customs, devotional religious practices, and religious norms that lead to fanaticism and sectism, bring the practice of listening to the Rabbi to the extreme. The purpose of her research is to raise awareness to issues of abuse within the Orthodox Jewish community as well as abuses that may result from religious affiliations.

Hsiao-Hsuan Lee
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Jennifer Jay

Thesis Title: Chinese Buddhism Culture and Family Violence from Tang to Song China (618-1279)

Ian Miller
Doctor of Philosophy - Classics
Supervisor: Dr. Adam Kemezis and Dr. Selina Stewart

Thesis Title: Morphophonology and Semantics of Latin Diminutives

I have a general interest in the reading, writing and speaking of Latin and Classical Greek. Neo-Latin (i.e. Latin used from the Renaissance to the modern day) and the Latin from the Late Roman Republic especially interest me. My research, general speaking, focuses on the phonetic development involved in these languages. In my doctoral dissertation I will investigate the morphophonology and semantics of proper Latin diminutives and other words which have only the appearance of proper Latin diminutives.


Grace Nicoll
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr John Kitchen

Thesis Title: The Two Swords: Medieval Popes and the Power of Ritual, 1075-1300

I study the Middle Ages, and my area of research focuses on the papacy during the high medieval period. Papal supremacy came to be expressed in increasingly dramatic ways from 1075 to 1300, and this raises the question of the role that art and ritual played in the popes’ attempts to legitimize their claims to lordship. These claims embed themselves in the symbolism of ecclesiastical artwork and also in the religious rituals described within liturgical texts. The interpretation of such sources requires an interdisciplinary approach, and I will utilize anthropological methods and iconographic analysis in my examination of papal power.


Mackenzie O'Neill
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Robert Smith and Dr David Marples

Thesis Title: Soviet Space History & Culture during the Cold War

My research interests include Soviet-Era Russian History and also the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine. I am interested in studying the Soviet Space Program and its impacts on the sociocultural history of the Soviet Union. I am also interested in looking at how this cultural impacts differs from Western thought and culture of Space and Science History.

Francois Pageau
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Felice Lifshitz

Thesis Title: From Turlupins to Vaudois: Heresy and Witchcraft in Arras, 1420-1460

I am interested in the conflation of heresy and witchcraft in 15th century's Northern France. Using as a starting point two trials in the city of Arras, one against heretics in 1420 and the other against witches in 1460, I explore various factors which have influenced the elaboration of the learned theory of witchcraft in the 15th century: the council of Basel, demonological treatises, and the spread of apocalypticism following the growth of Hussitism. I work as Sessional Instructor at Campus Saint-Jean. I am co-author, with Andrew Gow and Robert Desjardins, of The Arras Witch Treatises (Penn State University Press, 2016).


Colby Parkkila
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Sarah Nickel

Thesis Title: Creating Canada’s ‘National Playground’: Tourism Development, Indigenous Labour, and Representations of Indigeneity in Rocky Mountains Park, 1880-1930

I am interested in post-confederation Canadian history, primarily in the areas of Indigenous and settler relations, the National Parks system, Rocky Mountain history, Rocky Mountain tourism, and prairie history. My research is a historical analysis of the tourism economy in Rocky Mountains Park, now known as Banff National Park, between 1880 and 1930. I seek to explore how Indigenous Peoples were involved and invested in the economy of Rocky Mountains Park, what the relationship between tourism companies and Indigenous labourers was like, and how Rocky Mountains Park and Indigeneity were represented in tourism literature and promotional materials.


Sean Patterson
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr David R. Marples

Thesis Title: "What Do we Strive For? A Transnational History of Makhnovist Ideology and Identities in War, Exile, and Memory"

My dissertation research investigates the Makhnovist movement (1917-1921) as a borderland phenomenon whose ideology and identities were shaped by its unique location at the cultural and political crossroads of southern Ukraine's Zaporizhia region.


Autumn Reinhardt-Simpson
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Natalie VanDeusen and Dr Brandon Alakas

Thesis Title: Memory, Power, and Churching Reform in England: A Bourdieusian Analysis

Early modern ritual reform in England, gender and Reformation, religious reform and the intellectual lives of early modern women, early modern religious conversion, recusancy and church papistry, memory and reform, women and liturgy, liturgical change, medieval England, German, French, and Latin languages.

Madhusudan Rimal
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Dominik Wujastyk

Thesis Title: A Textual & Historical Study of the Laṅkāvatāra: A Sanskrit Manuscript of Buddhist Medicine

I am broadly interested in the history of Indian traditional medicine called Ayurveda. My proposed research explores the tenth century Nepalese Sanskrit hitherto unpublished manuscript called Laṅkāvatāra. By the textual and historical study of this manuscript, I want to look at the role of this Laṅkāvatāra in the milieu of Ayurveda, how this seemingly Buddhist text came into the medical system, and how Buddhist it is, if at all.


Paul Royer
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Liza Piper

Thesis Title: Project Cauldron or: How Alberta Almost Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

My research interests include western Canadian history (specifically Alberta), military history, American history, and the history of science and technology. I am interested in the use of nuclear weapons for non-military purposes (also referred to as Peaceful Nuclear Explosions or PNEs). For my project, I aim to conduct a scholarly investigation of Project Cauldron. Project Cauldron was the proposed use of nuclear weapons in the Fort McMurray Oil Sands during the mid-twentieth century. I wish to examine Project Cauldron from economic, political and environmental lenses.

Catherine Saffran
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Jane Samson

Thesis Title: Imperial Masculinity during the British Empire


Rachel Schmalz
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr David R. Marples

Thesis Title: Nikita Khrushchev and the Crimean Peninsula

My research will examine the implications of Nikita Khrushchev's transfer of the Crimean Peninsula to the Ukrainian SSR in 1954. One of my research questions will be whether ethnicity plays a role in the identity of the people living in Crimea and how that affects the authoritative power over the region. I hope to draw a connection to contemporary events in Ukraine concerning Vladimir Putin’s illegal annexation of the Crimean Peninsula in 2014.


Tulika Singh
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Dagmar Wujastyk

Thesis Title: (Dis)ordered Bodies in Early India. Perceptions of Normative, Nonnormative, and Disabled Bodies in the Indic Context

My research interests include social, cultural, medical history, gender studies, and disability history, primarily centered on premodern South Asia. In my doctoral project, I explore the perceptions of ‘disability’ in early India, focusing on how the conceptualizations of normative, nonnormative, and disabled bodies collectively shape attitudes toward and experiences of people with disorders. My project draws from the frameworks of critical disability studies, crip, feminist, queer, and body theory to examine how the intersectionality of social identities based on sex/gender, caste/class, and age with the notions of ‘variable’ bodies and minds shapes normative and nonnormative perceptions of the body.

Matt Spinks
Master of Arts - Classical Archaeology
Supervisor: Dr Margriet Haagsma

Thesis Title: Roman Public Spectacles in Thessaly, Greece

I am examining the transformation of traditional Greek theatres into expanded theatres during the Roman period, which was done to accommodate gladiatorial events and animal shows, among other typically Roman public spectacles. Specifically, I am analyzing the three theatres for which there is archaeological evidence of this occurring in Thessaly, in addition to the upwards of fifty inscriptions and imagery from stelae that suggest gladiatorial events.


Julia Stanski
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Sarah Nickel

Thesis Title: In Service, In Silence: Representations of Edwardian Domestic Servants in Western Canadian Living History Museums

Konstantin Tebenev
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Patrouch

Thesis Title: German Journeymen Associations and the Rise of Misogyny in Fifteenth-Seventeenth Centuries


Connor J. Thompson
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Shannon Studen Bower and Dr William Arnal

Thesis Title: The Pioneer-as-Symbol: Historical Memory and Public Commemoration on the Canadian Prairies, 1945–1976


Arwen Thysse 陳藹文
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr John Kitchen and Dr Natalie Van Deusen

Thesis Title: Simply Being: Mixed Race Experiences in Medieval Scandinavia and the Norse Diaspora

I am interested in mixed race experiences, intercultural relations, and cross-cultural contacts in the global Middle Ages, as well as questions of personal and social identities.


Nakita Valerio
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Hill

Thesis Title: Keepers of the Qur'an: Moroccan Women's Religious Literacy and Leadership

My research examines the development of religious literacy, leadership, and socio-political standing of Moroccan women Huffāẓ (Keepers of the Qur'an) and the roles of religion, religious texts, and practices in shaping their experiences, communities, and lives. My research is comparative in its approach (being cross-regional and looking to urban and rural women/girls Qur'anic schools) and I seek also to understand how the gendering of these spaces in traditional communities impacts personal (religio-political) identity and community, especially within a global context of growing pious resistance to encroaching secularity as well as local iterations of patriarchy.

Sharon Venne
Doctor of Philosophy - History
Supervisor: Dr Sarah Carter

Thesis Title: Indigenous Treaties: Concentration on Treaties Six, the Crown and International Significance of the Treaty Making

Salima Versi
Doctor of Philosophy - Religious Studies
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Hill

Thesis Title: Contemporary Islam & Canadian Ismailism

General focus of contemporary Islamic studies, but research more specifically examines contemporary Nizari Ismailism and Ismaili identity, particularly in Canada.


Zhixi (Jordan) Wang
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Ryan Dunch

Thesis Topic: Protestant Christianity in 20th Century China; Ex-China Missionaries from Canada in the Cold War

My research interests revolve around the transpacific flow of Protestant Christianity, particularly the Social Gospel, in the early 20th century. I am also interested in the stories of ex-China missionaries from Canada during the Cold War period.


Adrian Wawrejko
Doctor of Philosophy - History 
Supervisor: Dr Liza Piper 

Thesis Title: Constructing the West': the Role of the Environment in the Notion of Western Canadian Identity, 1890-1970

My research analyses how artistic and literary depictions of the Western Canadian environment contribute to the idea of Western Canadian identity, particularly in Alberta and British Columbia from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. Specifically, it investigates how settlers in both Alberta and British Columbia formulated an identity that was based on the evocation of natural beauty and promotion of the 'wilderness', on the one hand, and the utilization of this providential environment for resource-extraction purposes, on the other.

I have also completed an MA at the University of British Columbia analyzing the Committee for an Independent Canada and its role in promoting the idea of Canadian Independence in the 1970s as well as a BA at the University of Edinburgh researching Charles de Gaulle's anti-Americanism.


Mike Zhou
Master of Arts - History
Supervisor: Dr Joseph Patrouch

Thesis Title: French-speaking Regions in the Holy Roman Empire

I am interested in the cultural history of Western and Central Europe, particularly that of the Holy Roman Empire in the early modern period. Previously I have spent substantial time studying Habsburg history, and one of the research I did as an undergrad deals with a wedding ceremony between a Habsburg archduchess and a duke of Bourbon lineage in the Duchy of Parma. That research, along with my interests in reading Francophone history writings, encouraged me to explore the history of French-speaking regions in the Holy Roman Empire as a MA student.