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Department of History

Staff Profile

Dr Len Scales

Associate Professor (Late Medieval History) in the Department of History
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 41077

(email at

Len Scales studies the political culture of late medieval Europe, particularly the German-speaking lands. His current work is concerned with ideas about ‘German’ identity between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries. His recent publications in this area have concentrated upon collective stereotypes (the ‘warrior’ Germans), the relationship between peoplehood and power, and the question of medieval German ‘exceptionalism’. He is also exploring the history of medieval ideas about ethnicity and common identity more broadly, across the whole of the c.500-c.1500 period. His current and forthcoming publications in this field examine medieval ideas about the destruction of peoples. For the future, he plans a comparative investigation of political communication and ‘propaganda’ in the late Middle Ages, concentrating on the development of popular and visual media. He would welcome the opportunity to supervise postgraduate research on late medieval German history, late medieval political culture, and medieval peoplehood and inter-ethnic and inter-cultural relations.

Areas of Postgraduate Supervision

  • late-medieval Germany
  • late-medieval European political culture
  • pre-modern European ethnicity and nationhood

Research Groups

Research Projects

Research Interests

  • Politics, society and political ideas in later medieval Germany

Indicators of Esteem

  • 2015: Studies in German History (German History Society / Oxford University Press): Series editor (with Professor Neil Gregor, University of Southampton)
  • 2014: German History Society: Committee member

Related Links


Authored book

Chapter in book

Edited book

Journal Article

Teaching Areas

  • Late medieval cultural history
  • Peoplehood and inter-cultural relations in the Middle Ages
  • The late medieval history of Germany and western Europe