Staff Profile:Dr Aleks Pluskowski

Dr Aleks Pluskowski
Job Title:
Associate Professor
Areas of Interest:
  • The environmental archaeology of medieval Europe, especially zooarchaeology; ecology, biodiversity, human-animal relations.
  • The archaeology of crusading and colonisation.
  • Religious conversion from paganism to Christianity in northern Europe.
  • Aristocratic culture in medieval Europe.
  • Inter-disciplinary medieval studies.
  • Hyper-real, virtual and digital representations of the past.

Postgraduate Supervision

Aleks is happy to discuss proposals for postgraduate research in any area of zooarchaeology and medieval European archaeology, but especially the archaeology of crusading, colonisation, religious conversion, religious diversity, authority and frontier regions. For further information, please contact Dr Aleks Pluskowski

Research groups / Centres:

Medieval Social Archaeology Group

Landscape, Climate and Lived Environment Research Cluster

Key Facts:

Dr Aleks Pluskowski teaches the archaeology of later medieval Europe and crusading. His interests include exploring ecological diversity across medieval Europe, focused on zooarchaeology and inter-disciplinary perspectives of human-animal relations. He is the author of Wolves and the Wilderness in the Middle Ages (Boydell, 2006), which compares human responses to wolves and their shared environments in medieval Britain and Scandinavia. He has published several articles on responses to the wolf in the Middle Ages, as well as on the treatment of exotic animals, hunting space and broader understandings of predation in medieval society. He is currently preparing two volumes: an ecological survey of medieval Europe, and a new cultural history of the European wolf. He has also edited volumes on the topic of medieval animals and founded the "Animals as Material Culture in the Middle Ages" annual conference series, which has been held in Cambridge (2005), Foggia (2006), Vienna (2007) and is forthcoming in Budapest (2008). He also helped set up the "Medieval Animals Database", in collaboration with the Institut für Realienkunde des Mittelalters und der frühen Neuzeit, Krems and the Department of Medieval Studies at the Central European University in Budapest. He is regularly involved in organising and moderating sessions at international archaeology and medievalist conferences.

In recent years he worked on the zooarchaeology of Venetian colonisation in the Eastern Mediterranean, collaborating with a team from the Università Ca'Foscari di Venezia, led by Professor Sauro Gellichi and based on excavations in north Italy and Montenegro. After a series of pilot projects at the castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork (Poland, collaborating with Zbigniew Sawicki), as well as the castles in Feldioara in Transylvania (Romania, collaborating with Adrian Ionita) and Karksi (Estonia, collaborating with Heiki Valk), he obtained a Starting Investigator Grant from the European Research Council to examine the environmental impact of crusading and colonisation in the eastern Baltic. This major international project, which runs from 2010-2014, compares the 'ecological role' of crusader castle sites in Poland, Estonia and Latvia.

Research Projects:

  • The Ecology of Crusading: The Environmental Impact of Conquest and Colonisation in the Medieval Baltic
  • The Environmental Impact of Venetian Colonisation in the Medieval Mediterranean, part of The Heritage of the Serenissima project (collaborating with Università Ca'Foscari di Venezia)
  • Dominion: People, Animals and Environments in Medieval Europe.
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  • Pluskowski, A. and Seetah, K. (2008) The animal bones. In: Gelichi, S., Piuzzi, F. and Cianciosi, A. (eds.) Sachuidic presso forni superiore: ricerche archeologiche in un castello della carnia. All'Insegna del Giglio, Florence, pp. 98-103.


This list was generated on Wed Mar 21 06:39:51 2018 UTC.
BA PhD (Cambridge)



Contact Details

+44 (0) 118 378 5267

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