Dr Matthew Roby is a scholar of the European and Global Middle Ages, whose
research and teaching focus primarily on the themes of sex, gender, and monstrosity
in medieval Icelandic and English literatures. He is an assistant professor in the
Department of English at Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Canada.
Matthew received his B.A. and B.Ed. from Queen’s University, Canada, and his M.St.
and D.Phil. from the University of Oxford, UK. His doctoral thesis was entitled ‘Troll
Sex: Youth, Old Age, and the Erotic in Old Norse-Icelandic Narratives of the
Supernatural’. This project studied how depictions of witches, ghosts, and other
trolls in medieval Icelandic literature can shine a light on the sexual ideologies of
their authors and audiences. He also recently served as a postdoctoral fellow at the
University of Iceland and the University of Toronto. His postdoctoral project
examined representations of sexual consent, dissent, and assault in the medieval
Icelandic romance sagas.
He has published on Old English and Old Norse-Icelandic literatures, on topics
including gender, sexuality, emotion, and monstrosity. He is currently working on a
new translation of the Old Norse-Icelandic Poetic Edda, one of the principal sources
of pre-Christian Scandinavian myth and legend, which tells the stories of gods like
Odin, Thor, and Loki, and of heroes like Sigurd the dragon-slayer and Brynhild the
Valkyrie and shield maiden. This project, which he is undertaking with Professor
Ármann Jakobsson, will be the first major translation of the Edda for many years to
reproduce the alliterative verse form of the original poems, and is under contract
with W.W. Norton Co.