Irina Dumitrescu is a writer, critic, and professor of medieval literature. She has a PhD from Yale and now teaches at the University of Bonn. Irina wrote a book on difficult teacher-student relationships in medieval literature for Cambridge University Press, and edited Rumba Under Fire: The Arts of Survival from West Point to Delhi, a collection of essays about the sustaining role of the arts in personal and political crises.
Irina is a columnist at the Times Literary Supplement and co-host, with Mary Wellesley, of Medieval Beginnings, a podcast at the London Review of Books. Her essays have been published in a wide range of literary journals, and reprinted in Best American Essays 2016, Best Food Writing 2017, Wine Reads: A Literary Anthology of Wine Writing, Longreads, The Rumpus, and The London Magazine. She regularly makes appearances on podcasts and radio, including BBC Radio 4, CBC Ideas, and Deutschlandfunk.
Irina is passionate about showing how the lives and ideas of people who lived centuries ago still resonate today. A four-time immigrant, she is also keen to explore the roles food, language, and culture play in shaping us and helping us thrive, even in challenging times.