Rebecca Leuchak's research brings together art and architectural history, anthropology, and critical theory within a global perspective. She is active in medieval and African study groups and the Mediterranean Studies Association. The teaching /learning relationship with colleagues and students is her on-going passion and abiding personal reward. Studying at Columbia University with a double concentration in Medieval and African Art History, the University of Pennsylvania in educational theory and cross-cultural communication, and Georgetown University in Foreign Service, Rebecca prefers teaching on-site whether in Vietnam, Spain, France, Greece, England, or most recently Egypt. The power of experiential learning never ceases to impress her and bringing students into the wonder and insight of “being there” is her goal. Sometimes this bridging of time and space is achieved through innovative classroom activities, but best of all is taking the class “on the road” to the cathedrals, the pyramids, the temples and the tombs that are silent in the textbook but so eloquent in person. She is constantly testing, innovating and improving her courses. Colleagues have said that for Rebecca “learning is exciting – far beyond interesting”. Her students have called her “terminally curious” and she brings that excitement and curiosity for learning to all that she does.
Professor Leuchak has published on gothic cathedrals and virtual reality, neo-medieval architecture, reliquaries and devotional practices of both Africa and medieval Europe, and the material culture around the cult of saints. With a background as a museum professional, formerly working at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan, and The Cloisters Museum, and continuing to curate and consult, she is interested in the politics and poetics of the display of cultures in museums around the world. Her current projects include a book-length essay on Mosan Art – memory and meaning, and an interdisciplinary celebration of stairs.