Esther Souman

MA Candidate

History BA (Honours with Distinction), Simon Fraser University, 2017Certificate in German Studies, Simon Fraser University, 2017Goethe-Zertifikat B1, Goethe Institut, December 2015

Supervisor: Luke Clossey

Research Description

My MA research involves delving into the networks of a group of sixteenth-century German and Dutch scholars called cosmographers. Cosmographies were books—often large tomes—in which authors set out to describe the world and the universe. These works can tell us a great deal about the worldviews of the authors and their contemporaries, as well as what information was accessible to whom and when. I focus specifically on the many letters that these cosmographers wrote, and aim to find out where they were getting new information from as they compiled their works.


Ever since I was a child growing up short distances from medieval castles and city walls I have loved the visual and interactive aspects of history learning. Since then, a background in travelling, language-learning, experiencing various cultures, and random interactions with strangers has helped to contribute to a jumble of historical interests. For the most part, anything before and leading up to the modern period holds my fascination, particularly where culture, religion, and/or scholarship are concerned. Due to language constraints, my primary focus in my MA research is on German and Dutch subjects, but I intend to examine broader global contexts as well. Mandarin holds first place with Latin on my list of languages to learn (and is until now decidedly the more intriguing of the two).



2017 University Summer Courses offered in Germany for Foreign Students and Graduates (DAAD)

2017 European History Essay Prize (SFU)

2013 Ken McGlinchey English Scholarship (Douglas College)

2011 Medal for Academic Achievement (Credo Christian High School)

Teaching Assistantships

History 130: Fundamentals of World History, Fall 2017

Research Assistantships

June - December 2017: "Forest Sangha Prosopography" in the West, Dr. Ferguson and Dr. Clossey (Urban Studies, SFU)

November 2016 - May 2017: digitization project “Jesus images”, Dr. Clossey (SFU)

July 2016: "Integrating Language into the History Classroom", Dr. Clossey (ISTLD, SFU)