Sophie is a Late Antique and Byzantine Archaeologist who works on the experienced nature of the past. Her current research is based on the historic period cemetery at Çatalhöyük, where she is currently writing up the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman graves for publication. Her fieldwork is funded by a British Institute at Ankara Strategic Research Initiative: ‘The Cemeteries of Çatalhöyük from Christianity to Islam: constructing memory, burying the dead and knowing God’.
Prior to joining the Joukowsky Institute, Sophie held teaching positions at Newcastle University and the University of Hull, where her teaching focused on memory, material culture, and archaeological theory and practice. She was post-doctoral research fellow at the British Institute at Ankara (2013-14) where she began to work on the cemetery contexts from Çatalhöyük. A graduate of Oxford (Master's degree) and Newcastle (B.A. with Honors, Ph.D.), her doctoral thesis was titled ‘A Relational Approach to Mortuary Practices in Medieval Byzantine Anatolia’. Her doctoral work used published and unpublished evidence from Middle Byzantine Graves of the 9th to the 12th century to consider the nature of death and grief in Byzantine Anatolia, and to construct a regional and chronological taxonomy of grave and cemetery types.
Sophie’s current research is focused on the nature of memory and how it differs from knowledge of the past. She is interested in how archaeologists create and validate knowledge.