Ardis Butterfield

Ardis Butterfield's picture
John M. Schiff Professor of English, Professor of French and of Music
63 High St, New Haven, CT 06520-8302
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Ph.D., M.A., Trinity College, Cambridge
M.A. University of Bristol

Ardis Butterfield specializes in the works of Chaucer, literatures of France and England from the 13th to 15th centuries, and in medieval music, as well as in theories and histories of language, form, and genre, city writing, bilingualism and medieval linguistic identities. Her books include the prize-winning The Familiar Enemy: Chaucer, Language and the Nation in the Hundred Years War and Poetry and Music in Medieval France. She edited Chaucer and the City, a collection of essays inspired by her undergraduate course on London in Literature. 

Co-founder of the Medieval Song Network, a collaborative, international project to encourage new interdisciplinary research on the medieval lyric, she currently co-hosts the Yale–based group Medieval Song Lab, and an annual colloquium on Anglophone Histories which she also co-founded at Yale. In 2016 she was voted President of the New Chaucer Society (2016 - 2018).  

She is currently engaged in three projects: a biography, Chaucer: A London Life; a new edition of medieval English lyrics for Norton; and a book on lyric form in the middle ages: Living Form: The Origins of Medieval Song. Before coming to Yale, she broadcasted regularly on radio and television in the UK, and continues to write reviews for BBC History magazine and the London Review of Books amongst other magazines and academic journals

Visit the YaleNews website for the full “Take Five” interview. For a recent interview at the Macmillan Centre, see:


Chaucer and nationhood; bilingualism and medieval linguistic identities; the literatures and music of France and England from the thirteenth to the fifteenth centuries; continental and insular vernacular manuscripts and the relationships between them; city writing; medieval lyric; theories and histories of language, form, and genre.


Chaucer and the Idea of English Literature, Major English Poets Chaucer to Donne, Medieval Biography, Chaucer and Medieval London.


The Medieval Lyric, Geoffrey Chaucer and Francophone Translation.


Chaucer, Middle English Literature I, Middle English Literature II, Introduction to Old and Middle English Literature); and a range of other courses (Approaches to Criticism (First-Year): Barthes, Derrida, French feminist writing; Intellectual and Cultural Sources: Ovid, Augustine, Dante, Montaigne, Freud; History of the Language; Bibliography; London in Literature; Critical Commentary (Third-year); Renaissance.