Armand De Filippo


Thesis title: Outside and Beyond: Manuscripts as objects and the implications within an interpretive environment.

Thesis description:

My thesis will compare three different forms of the book: a medieval codex, a physical facsimile and a virtual, digital edition. The emphasis will be on interrogating the material attributes of the objects, investigating how far (if at all) meaning lies in the embodied, felt experience of the material properties of a book, and exploring the respective manners in which we experience a tangible and a virtual book. Overall, the study will ask what implications all this may have for interpreting, learning and understanding.

I will examine the extent to which sensory encounters with a book can foster a meaningful experience and if digital technology can facilitate a physical, even emotional, encounter with a book in a way that cannot be achieved with the ‘real thing’.

My study will ask if the materiality of a medieval manuscript – its heft, feel of the tooling, smell of the parchment and sound of the folios - can evoke an affinity for the past in people who cannot read them, and if this enables wider experiential potentials.


Academic and Professional Qualifications

MA Interpretation, Representation and Heritage (Distinction)

University of Leicester

MCLIP (Chartered Member)

Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals

MA Comparative British and American Labour History

University of Warwick

BA (Hons) History and Education

Oxford Brookes University


PhD Scholarship, College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities, University of Leicester

Professor Susan Pearce Prize for Best Dissertation relating to Museum and Gallery Objects and Collections


Professional Experience

'Book Exhibitions and their Audiences', international network working party member

Portsmouth Museum Service, D-Day Museum, Public Programmes Officer

Tricolor Heritage Services, Senior Consultant

Rochester Cathedral, Library Development Officer

Shropshire Archives, Principal Librarian

London Borough of Islington, Local History Centre Manager

Imperial War Museum, Curator

BBC Written Archives Centre, Senior Document Assistant

The British Library, Map Library

The British Library, National Sound Archives




Chichester Cathedral: Society and Faith (2016), The History Press

Textus Roffensis: The Rochester Book (2015), The History Press

Other articles, blogs etc.

The beast in me: University of Leicester Special Collections blog (2018)

Outside and beyond: Deconstructing a medieval manuscript (June 2018), Museum Studies Connect magazine


'Breaking glass: Encountering the medieval manuscript in interpretive settings' presented at Leeds International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds (01 July 2019)

'"Blood, sex and death": Rewilding the manuscript in the museum' presented at Early Medieval Sculpture: New approaches, Methods and Audiences (Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture),  University of Leicester (10th April 2019)

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