Eliza Mauhs-Pugh comes to Oxford after having completed her BA in Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and Spanish at Drew University (New Jersey, USA). She graduated summa cum laude with Honours in Comparative Religion for her thesis, Santiago Matamoros: Reconquista and Identity in Twelfth-century Iberia, in which she examined the way in which St. James was used as a lodestone of identity in Christian Iberia in the context of the so-called Reconquista. Her research interests lie primarily in the sociocultural history of the medieval Middle East, particularly the interactions between Christian and Muslim communities and the role of minority communities. As a Critical Language Scholar she spent a summer in Tangier, Morocco studying Modern Standard Arabic and Moroccan Darija, and made use of original sources in Spanish, French, Latin and Arabic in her thesis research. An inveterate linguaphile, she is currently working on adding Russian to the list.