Edinburgh Research Explorer

Glaire Anderson

Senior Lecturer in Islamic Art

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Willingness to take PhD students: Yes

Students are welcome to contact me with proposals. Besides my core areas of expertise in the medieval Islamic west, current areas of interest include global encounters, collections and display, science and visual culture, and digital humanities

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor in Philosophy, MIT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Glaire D. Anderson is an historian of Islamic visual culture during the age of the caliphs (650-1250), with a focus on Umayyad Córdoba and the western Mediterranean in the ninth and tenth centuries.

She is the prizewinning author of The Islamic Villa in Early Medieval Iberia: Aristocratic Estates and Court Culture in Umayyad Córdoba (Ashgate, 2013). Her second monograph, A Caliphal Daedalus, explores science and medieval Islamic visual culture. She is also co-editor of The Aghlabids and Their Neighbors (Brill, 2018) and Revisiting al-Andalus: Perspectives on the Material Culture of Islamic Iberia and Beyond (Brill, 2007). 

Anderson received her PhD from the History, Theory & Criticism of Architecture/Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture at MIT. Her work has been recognized by organizations such as the American Council of Learned Societies, the College Art Association, the Society of Architectural Historians, and the Association for Spanish & Portuguese Historical Studies. She has served on the Historians of Islamic Art Association (HIAA) Executive Board and currently serves as Associate on the Board of Directors of the International Center of Medieval Art.



  • The Arts in the Age of the Great Caliphs
  • Stars, Robots, and Talismans: Science, Magic, and Medieval Islamic Visual Culture


  • Around 900: The Early Islamic West in a Global Context
  • Córdoba and Constantinople: Exchange and Competition Between the Umayyad and Byzantine Courts, together with Niels Gaul, A.G. Leventis Professor of Byzantine Studies (HCA)


As well as teaching on programmes at Edinburgh College of Art, Anderson teaches on the MSc in Late Antique, Islamic and Byzantine Studies in the School of History, Classics and Archaeology.

Research activities & awards

  1. Glass Routes

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in conference

  2. York Islamic Art Circle

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesPublic Engagement – Public lecture/debate/seminar

View all (10) »

Latest prizes

  1. HIAA Sponsorship, CAA 2021

    Prize: Other distinctions

  2. Associate, Board of Directors

    Prize: Election to learned society

  3. American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship

    Prize: Fellowships awarded competitively

View all (6) »

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