skip to primary navigationskip to content

Valentina A. Grasso


After Classical Studies in high school, I obtained a bachelor degree in 2015 at the University of Catania in Semitic Philology. At Catania I mainly studied Imperial Aramaic and Classical Arabic. My thesis was focused on the Philistines and the early alphabets of the Mediterranean.
During the same year, I enrolled for the Master's degree in “Oriental Languages and Cultures” at the University of Naples “L’Orientale” where I continued to study both Classical Arabic and Biblical Hebrew. My M.A. dissertation in Islamic Studies was entitled “The Pre-Islamic Milieu of Arabia. An Inquiry into the Jāhiliya and the Rise of the Latest Abrahamic Religion”. I spent my last M.A. year in England, as an Erasmus student at SOAS, University of London, where I have also studied Farsi. During my studies, I have also attended courses at the University of Oxford and Princeton University.
I am currently a PhD student at the University of Cambridge working on the history of late antique pre-Islamic Arabia under the supervision of Professor Garth Fowden. I am interested in Late Antiquity, with special reference to the religious attitudes of the inhabitants of pre-Islamic Arabia between late third and early seventh centuries. My Ph.D. will emphasise the composite late antique milieu of the Arabian Peninsula, and attempt to construct a coherent historical narrative out of our fragmentary sources.


Subject area and speciality

Islamic studies specialists:
Late antiquity specialists:

Pagan and Scriptural Antecedents of Islam


Current students and supervisors can access the Faculty’s Moodle page by clicking on the image below.