Professor Wendy Mayer

Position:Associate Dean for Research
(Full time)

LTJ Editor

Area of service:Education Staff
Location:ALC North Adelaide
Phone:+61 8 7120 8200

BA BA(Hons) PhD

Who am I?

I came to ALC in 2017 to take up the new full-time position of Associate Dean for Research. I am trained as a classicist (in Greek and Latin language and literature) and gained my doctorate in Studies in Religion at University of Queensland in 1996. Since gaining my doctorate I have mostly been working with a team of researchers as we built the international reputation of the Centre for Early Christian Studies at Australian Catholic University. My career has been research focused, and fostering and mentoring a research culture that opens up and explores questions of relevance to the contemporary world is my passion. Ask me about why history is relevant and I could talk for hours! My latest ARC (Australian Research Council) grant (with Prof. Bronwen Neil, Macquarie University; Prof. Pauline Allen, ACU; and A/Prof. Chris de Wet, University of South Africa) is titled: Memories of Utopia: Destroying the Past to Create the Future (300–650 CE).

Special interests

  • Social history of Late Antiquity
  • Early Christian preaching
  • The life and works of John Chrysostom
  • Greek and Roman medicine and its reception in Late Antiquity
  • The development of liturgy in the first nine centuries CE
  • Church architecture and its history and function (especially in Late Antiquity)
  • Religious radicalisation and conflict (past and present)
  • Social-functional morality and neuroscience

Qualifications in detail

  • BA (University of Adelaide, 1979)
  • BA(Hons) (University of Queensland, 1991), University Medal
  • PhD (University of Queensland, 1996)
  • FAHA

Papers & publications

Since 2012; for a more complete list of Dr Mayer’s publications see



(with Chris de Wet) Reconceiving Religious Conflict: New Views from the Formative Centuries of Christianity, Routledge Studies in the Early Christian World, London: Routledge.


(with Geoffrey D. Dunn) ed., Christians Shaping Identity from the Roman Empire to Byzantium: Studies inspired by Pauline Allen, Supplements to Vigiliae Christianae 132, Leiden: Brill.


(with Ian J. Elmer) ed., Men and Women in the Early Christian Centuries, Early Christian Studies 18, Strathfield: St Pauls Publications.


(with Bronwen Neil) ed., Religious Conflict from Early Christianity to the Rise of Islam, Arbeiten zur Kirchengeschichte 121, Berlin: De Gruyter.


(with Pauline Allen) The Churches of Syrian Antioch (300–638 CE), Late Antique History and Religion 5, Leuven: Peeters.

Book chapters and journal articles


‘Preaching and listening in Latin? Start here’, in Preaching in the Patristic Era: Sermons, Preachers, and Audiences in the Latin West (ed. Anthony Dupont, Shari Boodts, Gert Partoens, and Johan Leemans) A New History of the Sermon 6, Leiden: Brill, 11–27.

'Re-theorizing religious conflict: Early Christianity to late antiquity and beyond', in Reconceiving Religious Conflict: New Views from the Formative Centuries of Christianity (ed. Wendy Mayer and Chris L. de Wet), London: Routledge, 3–29.


‘Australia’s moral compass and societal wellbeing’, in Wellbeing, Personal Wholeness and the Social Fabric: An Interdisciplinary Approach (ed. D. Costache, D. Cronshaw and J.R. Harrison, Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Press), 110–131.

‘A life of their own: preaching, radicalisation, and the early ps-Chrysostomica in Greek and Latin’, in Philologie, herméneutique et histoire des textes entre orient et occident. Mélanges en hommage à Sever J. Voicu (ed. Francesca P. Barone, Caroline Macé, and Pablo Ubierna, Turnhout: Brepols), 977–1004.

(with Pauline Allen) ‘John Chrysostom’, in The Early Christian World (ed. Philip Esler, 2nd revised and expanded edn, London: Routledge), 1054–1071.


’The Changing Shape of Liturgy: From earliest Christianity to the end of Late Antiquity’, in Liturgy’s Imagined Past/s: Methodologies and Materials in the Writing of Liturgical History Today (ed. Teresa Berger and Bryan Spinks, Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press), 275–302.

’Madness in the works of John Chrysostom: A snapshot from Late Antiquity’, in The Concept of Madness from Homer to Byzantium: Manifestations and Aspects of Mental Illness and Disorder, Supplementi di Lexis N.S. Nr. V (ed. Helene Perdicoyianni-Paléologou, Amsterdam: Adolf M. Hakkert Editore), 349–373.


’The persistence in Late Antiquity of medico-philosophical psychic therapy’, Journal of Late Antiquity 8.2, 337–351.

’Shaping the sick soul: reshaping the identity of John Chrysostom’, in Christians Shaping Identity from the Roman Empire to Byzantium (ed. Geoffrey D. Dunn and Wendy Mayer, Leiden: Brill), 140–164.

’John Chrysostom’, in The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Patristics (ed. Ken Parry, Oxford: Blackwell), 141–154.

’Medicine in transition: Christian adaptation in the later fourth-century East’, in Shifting Genres in Late Antiquity (ed. Geoffrey Greatrex and Hugh Elton, Farnham: Ashgate), 11–26.

’The ins and outs of the Chrysostom letter-collection: new ways of looking at a limited corpus’, in Collecting Early Christian Letters: From the Apostle Paul to Late Antiquity (ed. Bronwen Neil and Pauline Allen, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), 129–153.


’John Chrysostom and women revisited’, in Men and Women in the Early Christian Centuries (ed. Wendy Mayer and Ian J. Elmer, Strathfield: St Pauls Publications), 211–225.

(with Ian Elmer) ‘Reading Men and Women in the Early Christian Centuries’, in Men and Women in the Early Christian Centuries, 1–23.


’Media manipulation as a tool in religious conflict: controlling the narrative surrounding the deposition of John Chrysostom’, in Religious Conflict from Early Christianity to the Rise of Islam (ed. Wendy Mayer and Bronwen Neil, Berlin: De Gruyter), 151–168.

’Religious conflict: definitions, problems and theoretical approaches’, in Religious Conflict from Early Christianity to the Rise of Islam (ed. Wendy Mayer and Bronwen Neil, Berlin: De Gruyter), 1–19.

’John Chrysostom’, in The Encyclopedia of Ancient History (ed. R.S. Bagnall, K. Brodersen, C.B. Champion, A Erskine and S.R. Huebner, Oxford: Blackwell Publishing Ltd), 3607–3608.


’John Chrysostom as crisis manager: the years in Constantinople’, in Ancient Jewish and Christian Texts as Crisis Management Literature: Thematic Studies from the Centre for Early Christian Studies, Library of New Testament Studies 445 (ed. David Sim and Pauline Allen, London-New York: T&T Clark), 129–143.

’John Chysostom’, in The Orthodox Christian World (ed. Augustine Casiday, London: Routledge), 213–217.

’The topography of Antioch described in the writings of John Chrysostom’, in Les sources de l’histoire du paysage urbain d’Antioche sur l’Oronte. Actes des journées d’études des 20 et 21 septembre 2010 (ed. Catherine Saliou, Vincennes-Saint-Denis: Université Paris-8), 81–100.

Online resources

Latest update: March 2016

Chrysostomica: an Online Bibliography of Scholarship on John Chrysostom and Attributed Writings,

Updated: 15/08/2018 3:41pm