Ackerman Smoller, a Little Rock native, graduated from Hall High School and
holds an A.B. in History with Music summa cum laude from Dartmouth
College. She received her Ph.D. in History from Harvard University in 1991 and
subsequently taught 6 years at Stanford University before returning home to
Little Rock to join the UALR and UAMS faculties in 1997. At UALR, where she is
Professor of History, Smoller teaches upper-level courses on medieval Europe,
the history of disease, the history of apocalyptic thought, and the history of
magic, science, and the occult. She is adjunct associate professor in the
Division of Medical Humanities at UAMS, where she teaches a senior longitudinal
course on Disease and Society from Antiquity to the Present.
She has recently completed a book
manuscript entitled The Saint and the Chopped-Up Baby: The Cult of
Vincent Ferrer and the Religious Life of the Later Middle Ages, work
that has been supported by a fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim
Memorial Foundation and by a summer stipend from the National Endowment for
the Humanities. A future book project, Astrology and the Sibyls:
Routes to Religious Truth in Medieval and Renaissance Europe, arises
from work she did in 2003-06 in conjunction with the research group
“Knowledge and Belief” sponsored by the Max Planck Institute for the History
of Science in Berlin.
She is married to Bruce Smoller, former
chair of the pathology department at UAMS and now Executive Vice President
of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology, and they have two
grown sons, Jason and Gabriel. For fun, she enjoys reading, doing Pilates,
playing the flute, and walking her dogs.
A.B., History with Music, summa cum
laude, Dartmouth College, 1981
A.M., History, Harvard University, 1984
Ph.D., History, Harvard University, 1991
Saints and miracles
Medicine and disease
History, Prophecy, and the Stars: The Christian
Astrology of Pierre d'Ailly, 1350-1420. Princeton, NJ: Princeton
University Press, 1994.
Authentic Miracles to a Rhetoric of Authenticity: Examples from the
Canonization and Cult of St. Vincent Ferrer.” Church History 80, no. 4
“Teste Albumasare cum
Sibylla: Astrology and the Sibyls in Medieval Europe.” Studies in
History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 41 (2010): 76-89.
and the Sibyls: John of Legnano’s De adventu Christi and the Natural
Theology of the Later Middle Ages.” Science in Context 20:3 (2007): 423-50.
&nbso; "A Case of Demonic
Possession in Fifteenth-Century Brittany: Perrin Hervé and the Nascent Cult
of Vincent Ferrer.” In Michael Goodich, ed. Voices from the Bench: The
Narratives of Lesser Folk in Medieval Trials. NY: Palgrave-Macmillan,
2006. Pp. 149-76.
Mothers: The History of a Designation of Spiritual Status.” In Marc
Forster and Ben Kaplan, eds. Piety and Family in Early Modern Europe: Essays in Honour of Steven Ozment. Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2005. Pp.
“Northern and Southern Sanctity in the
Canonization of Vincent Ferrer: The Effects of Procedural Differences on
the Image of the Saint.” In Gábor Klaniczay, ed. Procès
de canonisation au Moyen Âge: aspects juridiques et religieux. Collection
de l’École française de Rome 340. Rome: École Française de Rome, 2004.
Earthquakes, Hail, Frogs, and Geography: Plague and the Investigation of
the Apocalypse in the Later Middle Ages.” In Paul Freedman and Caroline
Bynum, eds. Last Things: Eschatology and Apocalypse in the Middle Ages.
Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000. Pp. 156-187.
Alfonsine Tables and the End of the World: Astrology and Apocalyptic
Calculation in the Later Middle Ages.” In Alberto Ferreiro, ed., The Devil,
Heresy and Witchcraft in the Middle Ages: Essays in Honor of Jeffrey Burton
Russell. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1998. Pp. 211-39.
Memory, and Meaning in the Canonization of Vincent Ferrer, 1453-54.”
Speculum 73(1998): 429-54.
the Boundaries of the Natural in the Fifteenth Century: The Inquest into
the Miracles of St. Vincent Ferrer (d. 1419).” Viator 28 (1997): 333-59.
For more information please contact:
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Department of Medical Humanities