Kashaf works with medieval and early modern literature, paying particular attention to how the Middle Ages and the Renaissance are in dialogue. Her research focuses on the influence and reception of religious thought in premodern English and Latin texts, as well as the intersection of different figurative reading practices associated with hermeneutics, exegesis, allegory, and poetry. She is especially interested in the relationship between language and authority when it comes to medieval constructions of the self and the divine, considering how medieval writers navigate the world as both bodies and texts subject to a fallible—if not fallen—system of language.
Whenever she is able, Kashaf also works with manuscripts and rare books, as she is interested in how the materiality of a text affects its interpretation. She is always looking for opportunities to work with medieval manuscripts due to her passion for paleography, translating, and editing. Currently, she is part of a collaborative project to translate various poems by Gerald of Wales.
Kashaf’s current research interests are informed by her undergraduate thesis, which explores multivalent language in relation to legible selfhood—“the self as text”—an idea rooted in the works of Augustine of Hippo, and prevalent in the poetry and prose of John Donne and John Milton. Kashaf received her BA in English with a minor in Latin from Reed College before joining the English Language and Literature PhD program at the University of Chicago.