William Chester Jordan is Dayton-Stockton Professor of History and Chairman of the History Department. He is a former Director of the Program in Medieval Studies and has also been Director of the Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies (1994 to 1999).
He is the author of several books: Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade: A Study in Rulership (Princeton University Press, 1979); From Servitude to Freedom: Manumission in the Sénonais in the Thirteenth Century (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986); The French Monarchy and the Jews from Philip Augustus to the Last Capetians (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1989); Women and Credit in Pre-Industrial and Developing Societies (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1993); The Great Famine: Northern Europe in the Early Fourteenth Century (Princeton University Press, 1996; awarded the Haskins Medal of the Medieval Academy of America); Europe in the High Middle Ages (Penguin, 2001); Unceasing Strife, Unending Fear: Jacques de Thérines and the Freedom of the Church in the Age of the Last Capetians (Princeton University Press, 2005); and A Tale of Two Monasteries: Westminster and Saint-Denis in the Thirteenth Century (Princeton University Press, 2009).
His most recent book is Men at the Center: Redemptive Governance under Louis IX (Central European University Press, 2012). Professor Jordan has edited a one-volume encyclopedia of the Middle Ages for elementary school pupils (Franklin Watts, 1999) and a four-volume version for middle school students (Scribner’s, 1996). He was the editor-in-chief of the first supplemental volume of the Dictionary of the Middle Ages (Scribner’s, 2004).
He is a Fellow of the Medieval Academy of America, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His current research focuses on French-English relations in the thirteenth and early fourteenth century. From January 2009 to January 2010 Professor Jordan served as President of the American Catholic Historical Association. In 2011-2012 he served as President of the Fellows of the Medieval Academy of America, and in March 2012 and April 2013, he was elected Second Vice-President of the Academy and First Vice-President respectively.