Sara Ann Knutson
Thematic Research Area
Regional Research Area
Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
MA, University of California, Berkeley
MPhil, University of Cambridge
BA (Hons), University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
Sara Ann Knutson (she/ her) is Assistant Professor of Teaching, chair of Medieval Studies, and a historian and anthropological archaeologist specializing in premodern Afro-Eurasia, including the Islamic World and Scandinavia, and contemporary cultural heritage.
Her research and teaching examine topics including global history, race and ethnicity, diasporas, the Digital Humanities, materiality, museum anthropology and archives, and the cultural heritage of the Middle East and North Africa. Her current Educational Leadership (EL) projects include a Students as Partners initiative, curricular reform of the Medieval Studies program, and exploring data and digital tools in the Middle East History classroom.
Refereed Articles & Book Chapters
- “Between the Material and Immaterial: Burial Objects and their Agencies.” In The Norse Sorceress: Mind and Materiality in the Viking World (Ed. Leszek Gardeła, Sophie Bønding, and Peter Pentz). Oxford: Oxbow Books. 13-26.
- “Interactions of Change: Pursuing Active Materials and Intangible Movements along the Silk Road Network.” In Imperial Horizons of the Silk Roads: Archaeological Case Studies (Ed. Branka Franicevic and Marie Nicole Pareja). Oxford: Archaeopress. 115-138. 10.32028/9781803274041
- “Re-Engaging Islamic Materials and their Heritage Values.” The Jugaad Project 5(1). www.thejugaadproject.pub/islamic-coins
- (Co-authored with Caitlin Ellis). “‘Conversion’ to Islam in Early Medieval Europe: Historical and Archaeological Perspectives on Arab-Northern European Interactions.” Religions 12(7): 1-21. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12070544
- “Itinerant Assemblages and Material Networks: The Application of Assemblage Theory to Networks in Archaeology.” Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory 28(3): 793-822. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10816-020-09494-3
- “Archaeology and the Silk Road Model.” World Archaeology. 52(4): 619-638. https://doi.org/10.1080/00438243.2021.1940268
- “When Objects Misbehave: Materials & Assemblages in the Ancient Scandinavian Myths.” Fabula: Zeitschrift für Erzählforschung/ Journal of Folktale Studies 61 (3-4): 257-277.
Winner of the UC Berkeley Jeanne P. Steager Memorial Prize in Folklore (2020)
- “An Archaeology of Diasporas.” Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology (Ed. C. Smith). New York: Springer Reference. 1-7.
- “The Materiality of Myth: Divine Objects in Norse Mythology.” Temenos- Nordic Journal of Comparative Religion 55(1). 29-53.
- “Migration and Mobility in the Viking Age: Global Perspectives.” Syllabus 8(1). 5- 22.
- “Bridges to Eternity: A Reexamination of the Adoption of Christianity in Viking-Age Sweden.” Viking and Medieval Scandinavia 12. 87-101.
UBC Students as Partners Grant, 2023
Barakat Trust, UK Grant, 2023
UBC Green College Leading Scholars Program (2022-24 cohort)
Summer Institute in Museum Anthropology at Smithsonian, Washington DC, 2022
Social Science Research Council Mellon International Dissertation Research Fellowship, 2021
American Center of Research Kenneth W. Russell Fellowship, 2021
UC Berkeley Center for Race & Gender Research Grant, 2021
Erasmus+ Research Grant at Freie-Universität Berlin, 2021
UC Berkeley Doctoral Completion Fellowship, 2021
UC Berkeley Anthropology Lowie-Olson Grant for Research Travel, 2020, 2021
Swedish Women’s Educational Association San Francisco Stipendium, 2020
UC Berkeley Department of Anthropology Diebold Fellowship, 2020
UC Berkeley Archaeological Research Facility Stahl Grant, 2020
UC Berkeley Institute of European Studies Berkeley- Cologne Dissertation Research Grant, 2019, 2020
UC Berkeley Graduate Division Paul J. Alexander Fellowship, 2019
Digital Humanities at UC Berkeley Summer Institute Fellowship, 2017
Mellon-Berkeley Fellowship for Graduate Study, 2016- 2020
Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi National Fellowship, 2015
Cambridge Trust Scholarship for Graduate Study, 2015
University of Michigan Virginia Voss Memorial Award for Best Woman’s Thesis in Academic Writing, 2015
University of Michigan History Department Arthur Fondiler Award for Best Thesis, 2015
University of Michigan Library Undergraduate Research Award, First Place, 2015