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My name is Jennifer MacLellan and I am a history enthusiast. I started studying history way back in 2001 when I did a Bachelor of Arts in Scottish History. I followed that up with a Bachelor of Education (but never really wanted to teach). So I moved to Scotland and did a Masters of Letters in Church History.
I wanted to do a PhD there but it was super expensive. I was accepted, but opted to return for second Masters degree (fully funded) where I made the initial switch to Norse history. I did a Masters of Arts in Scandinavian history of the saints. I specifically studied St. Magnus. He was venerated in both Scandinavia and northern Scotland. This peaked my interest in Icelandic history and I was told to check out the possibilities of studying in Iceland.
I made a pretty big switch and decided to keep my topic in the realm of religion, but my focus shifted to medieval Icelandic religious history, after the Pagan conversion to Christianity. I applied to Iceland and was accepted to do a PhD.
I have always been a huge fan of popular culture and the way it uses historical interests to make rad new TV series, and films. You’ll catch a lot of flack sometimes as a pop culture enthusiast trying to peddle historical topics, but thats alright by me.
I watched Braveheart way back in 1995 and was so inspired by them hurling a claymore onto the field at the end and saying “they fought like warrior poets” that I literally went on to spend almost fifteen years studying Scottish history.
Popular culture TV series, films, and video games have their relevancy in my eyes and can inspire generations to take up an interest in the research.
This blog looks at what we know about the Norse world now, and what has inspired that knowledge. Sometimes it can be traced back to the sources, and sometimes it is a new creation very loosely based on evidence.
Either way, it’s fun to explore! So let’s not take ourselves too seriously. If something interests you, use this blog as a jumping off point for further inquiry.