Ph.D., Michigan, 1996
Office: 1703 Patterson Office Tower
Prof. Starr-LeBeau’s research focuses on the intersection of religious, cultural, and legal history in southern Europe in the early modern period, with particular emphasis on the inquisition. In her first book, In the Shadow of the Virgin, she examined a series of fifteenth-century inquisitorial trials in one town in Spain as a means of understanding the place of converted Jews and their descendants in Spanish society at that time. In her current research project, she is engaged in a comparative study of early modern inquisitorial courts (Spain, Italy, Portugal, and Mexico), particularly defense strategies of accused Judaizers. Her work has been funded by the Fulbright Commission (1993-1994), the National Endowment for the Humanities (2001), the Program for Cultural Cooperation between Spain's Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports and US Universities (2003, 2006), and the American Philosophical Society (2010-2011).
Area of Specialization
Courses are offered at all levels, from the first half of Western Civilization at the introductory level, to more advanced courses on early modern European history. Topics taught at the upper-division level include the Renaissance, the Reformation, early modern social history, the history of medieval and early modern Spain, and Tudor-Stuart English history. A graduate course on early modern Europe, 1450-1648, is also offered regularly.
About MeSelected Publications
Gretchen Starr-LeBeau got her interdisciplinary undergraduate degree (History and Anthropology) from the University of Virginia, and her graduate degrees in History from the University of Michigan. Before coming to the University of Kentucky she taught as an adjunct at Suffolk University in Boston and as a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University. In 2001 she won the Chancellor's Award for Outstanding Teaching.
- In the Shadow of the Virgin: Inquisitors, Friars, and Conversos in Guadalupe, Spain (Princeton University Press, 2003). Finalist, National Jewish Book Award in History. http://press.princeton.edu/titles/7556.html
- "The Power of Inquisition Narratives: Jews, Conversos, and Christians in the Early Modern World" (in preparation).
“Piety and Penance among Spain’s judeoconversas,” Cuaderno Internacional de Estudios Humanísticos y Literatura/ International Journal of Humanistic Studies and Literature, special issue entitled, “Recuperando Sefarad/ Recovering Sepharad” (Fall 2008).
“Lay Piety and Community Identity in the Early Modern World” in A New History Of Penance, ed. Abigail Firey (Brill, 2008): 395-418.
“Writing (for) Her Life: Judeo-Conversas in Early Modern Spain” in Women, Texts, and Authority in the Early Modern Spanish World, ed. Maria V. Vicente and Luis R. Corteguera (Aldershot, England and Burlington, VT: Ashgate Press, 2003): 57-72.
“ ‘The Joyous History of Devotion and Memory of the Grandeur of Spain:’ The Spanish Virgin of Guadalupe and Religious and Political Memory,” Archiv für Reformationsgeschichte/Archive for Reformation History 93 (2002): 238-262. Awarded Best First Article Prize for 2000-2002 by the Society for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies.
“Mari Sánchez and Inés González: Conflict and Cooperation among New Christians” in Women in the Inquisition, ed. Mary E. Giles (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998): 19-41. Translated into Spanish in Mujeres en la inquisición (Martínez Roca SA Ediciones, 1999).