Jeroen De Gussem (* 1993) is Doctor in History and Literary Studies (interdisciplinary PhD, November 2019), currently stationed as FWO-funded junior postdoctoral fellow at the History Department of Ghent University. He is specialized in stylometry (computational modelling of writing style), Latin literature and the cultural history of the High Middle Ages (eleventh-twelfth centuries) for England, the Low Countries, France and Germany. His main interests go out toward medieval authorship and attribution, pre-modern intellectual networks and literary collaboration both on a small and large scale, and the mobility and translatability of Latin style in the Middle Ages. Central to his work is the aim to combine divergent fields of expertise, especially the application of computer science to the study of historical literature.
In October 2020 Jeroen De Gussem started his postdoctoral project Cross-Channel Stylistic Exchanges: A Stylometric Approach to the Impact of Mobility and Multilingualism on Medieval Latin Literature (1000–1150) (2020–2023), funded by the FWO (Flemish Research Foundation).
Jeroen De Gussem graduated as Master in Linguistics and Literary Studies in Latin-English (Ghent University, 2011–2015), during which time he also momentarily was an international exchange student at the University of Kent (Canterbury, 2013). He was recruited as a PhD student on the project Collaborative Authorship in Twelfth-Century Latin Literature. A Stylometric Approach to Gender, Synergy and Authority (2015–2019), made possible by the Special Research Fund of Ghent University (BOF) and the generous partnership of the Corpus Christianorum Library & Knowledge Centre. Under the guidance of an interdisciplinary supervisory team consisting of Jeroen Deploige (Ghent University), Wim Verbaal (Ghent University) and Mike Kestemont (University of Antwerp) he successfully defended his doctoral dissertation (open access) in November 2019. The project's aim was to apply stylometric techniques to shed new light on the underlying power dynamics for a series of well-known twelfth-century writing partnerships. By looking at the stylistic properties of Latin texts and evaluating the contributions of the respective authors involved, the aim was not only to attribute texts but also to better understand the cultural-historical circumstances in which they were composed. The case studies revolved around figures as Heloise of Argenteuil and Peter Abelard, Bernard of Clairvaux, Hildegard of Bingen, Elisabeth of Schönau and Suger of Saint-Denis. The project generated multiple publications, including one in the internationally renowned journal Speculum, kick-started collaborations with the CLiPS-team at the University of Antwerp and with Dr. Dinah Wouters, and resulted in the organization of an international conference, co-funded by the FWO, called The Medieval Literary Canon in the Digital Age (Ghent, September 2018).
Together with Klazina Staat, Jeroen De Gussem is coordinator of the research network RELICS (Researchers of European Literary Identity, Cosmopolitanism and the Schools), (copy-)editor and typesetter of the open-access journal JOLCEL (Journal of Latin Cosmopolitanism and European Literatures), and an active member of the Ghent Henri Pirenne Institute.
With his research on the disputed love letters of Heloise and Abelard, Jeroen is one of the contenders for the Flemish PhD Cup 2020 (movie below). He has (co-)written a number of popularizing articles on the heated authenticity debate in De Standaard, Eos Wetenschap and on VRT Taal.