Dr Karen McCluskey
BA/BFA Hons (McMaster), MA (Queen's), PhD (Syd)
Lecturer History

Email: karen.mccluskey@nd.edu.au
Phone: 02 8204 4121

Karen McCluskey is a senior lecturer in history at the University of Notre Dame, Sydney. She was awarded a PhD from the Department of Art History and Theory at The University of Sydney in 2006 and holds a Master’s degree in Art History from Queen’s University and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from McMaster University, both in Ontario, Canada. In 2012 Karen was appointed to the positions of Discipline Head (History) and Arts and Sciences honours co-ordinator.

Over the past fifteen years Karen has taught courses on many aspects of Italian, Byzantine and European art, as well as on various themes in Western history, from ancient Greece to the Protestant Reformation and beyond. She has been awarded scholarships and grants from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation for Venetian Research, UK; the Ministero degli Affari Esteri, Rome; the University of Sydney; the University of Notre Dame; and most recently a Samuel H. Kress Travel Grant, USA (2013).

Karen will be co-leading the University of Notre Dame’s Experience the World unit to Spain in June/July 2013 with Fremantle’s Associate Professor Deborah Gare. http://www.nd.edu.au/fremantle/schools/arts_sciences/spain-2013/spain-2013

Research Interests

  • sanctity and devotion in mediaeval and early-modern Europe
  • saints’ relics, sepulchres and art
  • mediaeval pilgrimage
  • legends and myths
  • intersection of politics and religion in mediaeval and early-modern Europe
  • aspects of gender in history
  • historiography


Karen can supervise students in the following areas:
Mediaeval and early modern history, especially gender, biography, saints/religion, art history, historiography, myths and legends
Topics in ancient history

Recent honours supervision

Philip II of Macedon: a revision [2010]
Marcus Aurelius and the Myth of the Philosopher-King [2011]
Gender & Power in Early Palaiologan Byzantium: the Case of Anna of Savoy (c. 1306-1365) [2012]
A Defence against Calumny: Hortense Mancini’s Salon Years (1675-1699) [2012]

Current supervision

Honours: Passover haggadot and Jewish culture, identity and history
Master: Re-examination of Ottoman art in the 15th and 16th centuries

For more information about Dr. McCluskey’s research, please click here