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Dr Laura Jacobus

Laura Jacobus is a former Senior Lecturer in the Department of History of Art, specialising in Italian late-medieval and early renaissance art.

Having done a first degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford in the late 1970s, she worked initially as a community worker in South London before discovering her true vocation and doing a second undergraduate degree and doctorate in History of Art at Birkbeck. Her doctoral thesis, entitled 'Gesture in the Art, Drama and Social Life of Late-Medieval Italy', was completed in 1994.

Early in her second career, Laura worked with adults and children at the National Gallery in London, as well as teaching undergraduates at Reading, London and Cambridge. She lectured at Birkbeck from the mid-1980s, first in what was known as the 'Extra-Mural Department' and then as a permanent member of faculty,  teaching full-time from 1989, and half-time from 1999 until her retirement in 2019. 

She has published widely, with interests in many aspects of Italian art c.1250-1500, particularly pertaining to gender, portraiture, creativity and practice, patronage, confraternal culture, early drama, and the use of public space. News, abstracts and texts of publications and conference papers can be found on Laura's academia.edu page.