Rebecca F. McNamara, D.Phil.

Chair and Professor of English
(805) 565-7179

Office Location

Reynolds Hall 103

Office Available

Mondays & Wednesdays 1-2:30 pm



Medieval literature, the history of emotions, death studies, law and politics in Middle English literature, sociolinguistic approaches to literature, Chaucer


Dr.McNamara has studied, researched, and taught medieval literature around the globe, from Waco to Oxford and Sydney to Los Angeles. After a decade abroad in England and Australia, this native Texan is delighted to join the English Faculty at Westmont and to make Southern California home. Besides researching difficult questions (how do we find out about emotions in the medieval past?), Rebecca enjoys continuing to learn more about literature with her students and mentoring them along the way. Some of her most valued time with students was spent providing pastoral care for undergraduates and graduates as the Junior Dean of Exeter College at the University of Oxford. Rebecca is grateful for the experiences she has had working on multiple continents and the interesting people she has met (especially her husband, James). Her biggest piece of advice to students is to get to know people and places (and books and writers) that are unfamiliar to you—such changes in perspective will teach you more than you can imagine about yourself, other people, and the world around you.