January 2022 |
The Medieval Studies Colloquium is an annual event which takes place on UW–Madison’s campus each spring. The Colloquium offers an opportunity for graduate students in multiple disciplines to present their research in the various fields of medieval studies, share and receive feedback, and participate in discussion on topics of interest with peers from a wider, interdisciplinary community of Medieval Studies scholars, without the restrictions of membership or registration fees.
Ninth Annual Medieval Studies Colloquium:
The call for papers for the Ninth Annual Medieval Studies Colloquium “False Dichotomy: Sacred & Secular in the Middle Ages” is now open. The colloquium will take place Friday, April 8th and Saturday, April 9th, 2022, in-person at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Information about our keynote lectures and workshops will be posted soon.
The Graduate Associations of Medieval Studies (GAMS) at UW–Madison invites abstracts from graduate students on topics relating to the dichotomy or lack thereof between the secular and the sacred in medieval studies. All abstracts on any topic of medieval interest will be seriously considered.
Mercenaries and Crusaders
Deadline: January 31, 2022
The Hungary in Medieval Europe Research Group at the Department of History, University of Debrecen, the Centre for the History of Society and Culture (CHSC) of the University of Coimbra and the Histoire et Cultures de l’Antiquité et du Moyen Âge (HiscAnt-MA) Laboratoire of the University of Lorraine are pleased to announce that the interdisciplinary conference on Mercenaries and Crusaders (1202-1480s) will take place June 22–24 2022, at the University of Debrecen, Hungary.
We extended the deadline for submission of sessions and papers until the end of January.
Please find the Call for papers attached as well as at the conference website: https://mercenariesandcrusaders.com/?page_id=51
All interested lecturers, researchers, independent scholars and PhD-students are invited to submit an abstract on our website using the conference abstract template: https://mercenariesandcrusaders.com/ .
In the light of further developments of the pandemic and travel restrictions, we might consider applications for online participation, and make the conference a hybrid one.
There is no registration fee, the organizers will provide accommodation, light lunch and coffee breaks between the conference sessions. The organization board will consider to cover the air/rail travel costs for some of the sessions chairs or key-note speakers.
Postgraduate English Issue 42
Deadline: May 28, 2021
We invite postgraduate students and early-career researchers to submit papers of 5000 – 7000 words, or book reviews of 1000 – 2000 words by Friday 28th May 2021, for consideration for the journal’s 42nd edition.
Papers can be on any theme or area of literary research; we will also consider work with an interdisciplinary focus. Submissions must follow the MHRA Style Guide. If submitting a book review, please contact the editors in advance with details of the book you wish to review.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
MAM 2021: “Beneficence in the Medieval World”
Conference Dates: October 29-30, 2021
Abstract Deadline: August 1, 2021
PLENARY SPEAKER: DR. DORSEY ARMSTRONG, PURDUE UNIVERSITY, “DUBIOUS GIFTS: STUDYING THE BLACK DEATH IN THE AGE OF COVID”
We invite submissions of abstracts (c. 250 words) for the 2021 Medieval Association of the Midwest Conference, to be hosted virtually by Ball State University on October 29-30, 2021.
All topics pertaining to medieval studies are welcome. We are particularly interested in proposals related to this year’s theme, “Beneficence in the Medieval World,” that explore such topics related to mercy, kindness, charity, friendship, reciprocity, gift giving, love, humanity, and altruism in the medieval world.
In keeping with MAM’s philosophy of inclusiveness, we encourage the submission of proposals from all branches of medieval studies, including but not limited to archaeology, art, bibliography, gender, history, law, language, literature, media, music, philosophy, race, religion, and science.
We invite abstract proposals for individual papers as well as fully formed sessions of papers or roundtables. 250-word abstracts are due by August 1, 2021. Please send all abstracts, questions, or queries to Alexander L. Kaufman: firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEMS Festival 2021
Deadline: April 30th, 2021
This two-day event celebrates Medieval and Early Modern history, 400 – 1800, and encourages a wide range of interdisciplinary topics, including but not limited to, politics, religion, economics, art, drama, literature, and domestic culture. MEMS Fest aims to be an informal space in which postgraduate students, early career researchers, and academics can share ideas and foster conversations, whilst building a greater sense of community. Undergraduate students in their final year of study are also welcome at the conference
We invite abstracts of up to 250 words for individual research papers of 20 minutes in length on ANY subject relating to the Medieval and Early Modern periods. The research can be in its earliest stages or a more developed piece. We also encourage 700-word abstracts proposing a three-person panel, presenting on a specific subject or theme in Medieval or Early Modern studies.
Virtual conference takes place June 18-19. 2021.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Power, Empowerment, and Disempowerment
Deadline: April 25th, 2021
ISFC is a two-day inter-, multi-, trans-, and cross-disciplinary symposium that will explore the theme ‘power, empowerment and disempowerment’ in festival culture. In tune with last year’s symposium we continue to focus on (but are not limited to) the creative practices, social benefits, grassroots organising, economic development, tourism, hospitality and events, multiculturalism, diversity, local community involvement, partnerships, religion, and music entrepreneurial networks offered by many festivals. We continue to take note of the many festivals around the world, which are all manifested in varying ways, possessing their own social, religious and cultural practices. Be they past or present, folk, religious, literary, food, drink, alternative or community-based in nature, festivals illuminate discourses of hegemony, homogeneity, race, politics, nationalism, identity and religion etc. We consider that the study of festivals is an emerging discipline, hence it is important to examine festivals from varying perspectives to understand, broaden and articulate the scope of festival studies.
This year’s theme of power questions what is powerful about festival culture and how people are empowered and/or disempowered in and through it. Does festival culture complement our inalienable right to be free, and, if not, why? Does governmental control affect, interrupt, impact, empower or disempower festival culture (makers, spectators, participants etc.)? Are we actively engaged in the organic development of festival culture or are we passively taking in or accepting what is presented to us?
Virtual conference takes place June 5-6, 2021.
Contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vox medii aevi: The Gargantuan World of Medieval Laughter
Deadline: April 15th, 2021
Laughter has been a favourite topic for medievalists for many decades, yet the potential for new research remains great. Approaches have traditionally been framed through the work of Mikhail Bakhtin, whose ideas on carnival culture have long defined understandings of medieval comedy throughout the global scholarly community. Reflecting on the many ways that the study of humour has changed over the past decades, and on the multidisciplinary approaches that have driven these changes, in this issue we welcome new interpretations of medieval humour, comedy, and laughter. Considering sociological, anthropological, and literary perspectives, as well as historical work, views from visual studies, and research on the history of the emotions, we are interested in receiving papers that share original research on laughter, in the widest range of its manifestations throughout the Middle Ages.
Publishing: Nov 2021
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
CEMS Graduate Conference 2021: Materiality in the Eastern Mediterranean World
Deadline: April 5th, 2021
The aim of this conference is to explore how a turn towards materiality can help us to understand the Eastern Mediterranean world. The conference seeks research that investigates the role of physical “things” in history. How are material culture, technology, and the physical environment entangled in historical processes? How has the physical world shaped and been shaped by forms of social life in the Eastern Mediterranean? How have ideas and emotions been put into practice and how have they been embodied in material objects (e.g. artifacts, relics, and manuscripts)? How could materiality in the Eastern Mediterranean differ from other regions?
We welcome approaches that focus on the relations between humans and their physical surroundings, the way they understand, perceive, and use them. Moreover, in turning towards the material, the conference intends to explore connections and entanglements between human/non-human, spiritual/physical, and phenomenological/epistemological.
Virtual conference takes place May 28-29, 2021
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The White Rose Medieval Graduate Conference: Self & Selves
Deadline: April 1st, 2021
This conference approaches these questions by facilitating interdisciplinary conversations that explore how medieval people expressed and conceptualised the self and selves. Participants are encouraged to critically reflect on the ways in which medieval selves were intersectional: informed, expressed, and challenged by ability, class, gender, sexuality, race, religion and other manifestations of identity. We also encourage investigations of ‘the self’ in all of its expressions in medieval cultural productions from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds and methodologies: such as archaeological, art historical, literary, scientific, theological, and political approaches. By fostering a discussion on what self-identity might mean within a medieval context, a secondary aim of this conference is to illuminate contemporary interpretations of identity today.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Interpretations, Appropriations, and Rewritings of Giovanni Boccaccio
Deadline: April 1st, 2021
We propose the 2021 XI Montevideana International Colloquium as a space for new research on the work of the Certaldese, as well as for studies on appropriations of his work: both those appropriations carried out by him with respect to tradition (his own rewriting of Apuleyo, Virgilio, and Dante, for example), and those formulated in diverse media by other artists in the centuries that followed (from Sandro Botticelli to Lope de Vega, Franz von Suppé or Carlo Levi), and by the many translators who propose different readings of Boccaccio without neglecting his important influence on past and present thinkers (like Peter Sloterdijk, who views the Decameron as the first modern text). Papers will be accepted in Spanish, English and Italian.
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Resilience Resistance and Renewal in the Medieval and Early Modern World
Deadline: March 1st, 2021
The Medieval and Early Modern Student Association (MEMSA) is pleased to announce a call for papers for a virtual graduate student conference co-sponsored by the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (CMRS) at UCLA. The conference will be held via Zoom on May 27, 2021.
We hope to bring together presenters who consider responses to change in the medieval and early modern world, particularly those that took the form of resilience, resistance, and renewal. We are particularly interested in work that takes into consideration issues that have been cast into greater relief as a result of our experiences in 2020. Presenters from all disciplines are welcome, especially those that take on interdisciplinary perspectives and methodologies. Please submit abstracts (200-300 words) for 15-20 minute presentations.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Corporeal Creations: Bodily Figurations of Creativity (Online Workshop)
Deadline: February 18th, 2021
Our workshop aims at collecting and discussing medieval and post-medieval examples of creative metaphors which draw on the corporeal and to consider their communicative functions and ideological implications.
Virtual workshop takes place March 24, 2021
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
“The Global Mediterranean” - The Mediterranean Seminar Winter/Spring 2021 Workshop (February-April; remote)
Deadline: January 28th, 2021
“The Global Mediterranean” - The Mediterranean Seminar Winter/Spring 2021 workshop, sponsored by The Ohio State University, and organized by Harry Kashdan (OSU), Brian Catlos (CU Boulder) and Sharon Kinoshita (UCSC), will take place via Zoom from February through April 2021. The workshop features works-in-progress by: Marcus Ziemann, (Classics, The Ohio State), Padraic Rohan (History, Stanford University), and John J. Curry (History, U of Nevada-Las Vegas); and two round tables: “Area Studies: Global Mediterranean/Global Middle Ages: Eurocentric or Revisionist?” and “Circulation: Is it Anachronistic to Frame Mediterranean Circulation as Global?.” Registration is required.
Cultures of Travel: Tourism, Pilgrimage, Migration - The Fifteenth International Conference of the Taiwan Association of Classical, Medieval and Renaissance Studies (TACMRS)
Deadline: January 17th, 2021
The conference calls for research from the fields of art history, history, literary history, cultural studies, religious studies, philosophy, classical studies, archaeology, anthropology, geography, social sciences, and beyond. Special attention might be given to the cultural dialogue between East and West. We especially welcome the scholarly exchange between Asian and Western experts. We would also particularly appreciate papers that mark the 700th anniversary of the death of the great Italian poet Dante Alighieri (c. 1265–1321).
Areas of interest may include, but are not limited to the following topics:
- The act of traveling and its representation in the arts
- The act of traveling and its representation in literature
- Cultural travel and tourism
- The Grand Tour
- Traveling artists
- Pilgrimage, physical and spiritual, religious and secular
- Pilgrim paths
- Travel narrative: travelogues, diaries, travel memoirs, guide booksIllustrations of travel books
- Traveling between reality and imagination
- Substitutes of traveling: Traveling and pilgrimage in the mind
- Traveling in the armchair and its narrative
- Traveling between Asia and the West
- Travel record literature from Asia
- Comparative perspectives on traveling in the East and West
- Traveling from and to the Near East
- Traveling and pilgrimage in Islamic culture
- Women and traveling
- Traveling and trade
- Discovery of the world: Exploration of foreign countries, cosmography and chorography
- Measuring the world: Maps and atlases
- Traveling and (early) colonialism
- Journeys on health grounds
- Forced traveling: Flight, persecution, migration
- Traveling and epidemics
Conference takes place from October 22-23, 2021.
Contact/submission email: TACMRS.NTNU@gmail.com
Medieval Studies Student Colloquium at Cornell: Movement
Deadline: January 15th, 2021
This year’s colloquium focuses on the theme of movement. Movement denotes the movement of peoples, cultures, thoughts and goods, the migration of plants and of animals. Possible topics may include (but are not limited to):
- The migration of people, animals, and plants;
- Cultures of movement;
- Translation and adaptation (of cultures, languages, etc.);
- Traditions that involve physical or spiritual movement;
- Cosmology and the movement of celestial bodies;
- Trade and movement in economics;
- The stagnation or absence of “movement;”
- The representation of “movement;”
- Displacement, dispersal, or diaspora;
- Moving into the “unknown;”
- Temporal movement;
- Effects of movement;
- Ethics of movement.
Virtual conference will take place March 26-27, 2021.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Medieval and Renaissance Forum: Scent and Fragrance
Deadline: January 15th, 2021
We welcome abstracts (one page or less) or panel proposals that discuss smell and fragrance in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Papers and sessions, however, need not be confined to this theme but may cover other aspects of medieval and Renaissance life, literature, languages, art, philosophy, theology, history, and music.
Virtual Conference Friday, April 16 and Saturday April 17, 2021
Contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Edited Collection of Essays on Queer Theory and John Gower
Deadline: January 15th, 2021
This collection of essays asks contributors to take the capaciousness of the word “queer” to heart in order to think about what connections we can continue to make between queer theory and Gower’s poetry in order to trace and depict the full range of non-normative identities and phenomena in Gower’s trilingual corpus. Because this volume seeks to look at both the English and non-English texts, we are interested in papers that touch upon any of Gower’s major or minor works, in English, French, or Latin. Moreover, we encourage a diversity of approaches to what is “queer” in Gower’s texts.
Completed essays due in October 2021.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Additional submission email: grinnellNS@wofford.edu
Premodern New Materialisms
Deadline: January 15th, 2021
We seek to propose a special forum on “Premodern New Materialisms” in Exemplaria: A Journal of Theory in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. Currently, we are accepting proposals for contributions that both draw from and challenge the commitments of contemporary thinking in the new materialism, using studies of premodern periods, texts, and artifacts to trace new questions and carve out new topics and approaches to new materialism and related fields, such as posthumanism and transhumanism. How, for example, have premodern theories of religious or sexual difference centered around matter contributed to modern hierarchies of race, gender, species, and more? How can premodern practices and relationships to objects and things put pressure on modern conceptions of the rational human self in ways that may help us conceptualize more just social and environmental ecologies? How might premodern notions of form and matter—and the agency of each—help us to reconsider the place of form in twentieth and twenty-first-century literary-theoretical frameworks?
Contact/submission emails: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
Questionning the Crime of Witchcraft: Definitions, Receptions and Realities
Deadline: November 30th, 2020
In the last decades, the multiplications of works in the field of Witchcraft Studies made it possible to profoundly renew the approaches and the study designs of the repression of witchcraft in the late Middle Ages and in the beginning of the Early Modern Era. Consequently, research has substantially specified the methods and configurations (ideological, political and doctrinal) that contribute to the genesis of the “witch-hunt”. Research also uncovered that the repression of witchcraft could take a number of different forms depending on the contexts, the spaces studied, the sources and the aims they seem to pursue. It underlines the extreme plasticity of the accusation of witchcraft and the categories of such a crime. Hence, the conference aims to focus the discussions on three main areas: the definition of the crime of witchcraft, its different receptions and the question of its reality.
The goal of the conference is also to discuss the crime of witchcraft by highlighting new fields of research and unstudied sources. The variety of definitions, the modalities of reception and the different realities that the crime of witchcraft had undergone in the late Middle Ages and at the beginning of the Early Modern Era (14th-16th centuries) will be addressed and debated.
School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS, Paris, France) on May 20th-21st 2021
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
University of Gothenburg Hamlet and the Nordic Countries
Deadline: November 30th, 2020
Hamlet and the North: Origins, Exchanges and Appropriations The story of Shakespeare’s Nordic play is also, inevitably, one of cultural exchanges before, during and after the early modern period. From its origins in Nordic tradition to its re-introduction in the Nordic countries through Shakespeare’s play, the story of Hamlet from the middle ages to present time is inextricably bound up with Nordic history and culture. This conference, co-hosted by the Nordic Shakespeare Society and the Early Modern Seminar at the University of Gothenburg, is the first to explore the specific Nordic dimensions of Hamlet. Gothenburg, the site of the first recorded performance of Hamlet in Scandinavia (1787), will be the location of an event that explores the historical connections between Hamlet and the North as well as the continuing importance of the play throughout the Nordic countries. The conference will take place on 12-14 November 2021 at the University of Gothenburg. Confirmed keynotes include Michael Dobson (Shakespeare Institute, University of Birmingham), Nely Keinänen (University of Helsinki), Philip Lavender (University of Gothenburg) and Richard Wilson (emeritus, Kingston University).
Call for Papers: 20th Vagantes Conference on Medieval Studies
Deadline: November 30th, 2020
The 20th Vagantes Conference on Medieval Studies will be held virtually March 18–20th, 2021 at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. The conference will take place over Zoom and will include Vagantes SWAG boxes, virtual workshops, professional development, and interactive activities. They invite abstracts from graduate students and recently graduated Masters students from all disciplines on any topic that is related to the Middle Ages.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Popular Culture Association: Medievalism in Popular Culture
Deadline: November 16th, 2020
The Medievalism in Popular Culture Area (including Early to Later Middle Ages, Robin Hood, Arthurian, Chaucer, Norse, and other materials connected to medieval studies) accepts papers on all topics that explore either popular culture during the Middle Ages or transcribe some aspect of the Middle Ages into the popular culture of later periods. These representations can occur in any genre, including film, television, novels, graphic novels, gaming, advertising, art, etc.
June 2nd – 5th – Boston Marriott Copley Place, Boston, MA
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Durham Palaeography and Latin Online School
Deadline: November 13th, 2020
7th - 18th December 2020
Full Price: £650
Bursaries will be considered for all applicants without access to other sources of funding.
Among the most exhilarating experiences available to scholars of any time prior to the wide availability of the printing press, holding a hand-made and hand-written text or document in one’s own hand as a direct and physical link to the past is perhaps the most exciting of all. Exciting, but also perhaps daunting; releasing the many kinds of information a manuscript contains requires a specialised set of skills, drawing on several disciplines. This course uses the unique range and depth of medieval studies at Durham to offer a basis for approaching medieval manuscripts with confidence. We invite students to look at form, function, and content of manuscripts under one and the same broad outlook, in particular by emphasising the importance of considering language and content in order to describe and transcribe a manuscript correctly. Our dedicated tutors are looking forward to communicating their own delight at studying medieval manuscripts and texts, and to share their continuing journey of exploration with you.
Call for Papers: Redefining the Middle Ages
Deadline: November 13th, 2020
A Virtual Graduate Student Conference March 11-12, 2021
University of New Mexico - Institute for Medieval Studies
This virtual conference will feature keynote addresses by Dr. Carisa M. Haris and Dr. Nicole Lopez-Jantzen, as well as a workshop led by Dr. Sarah Davis-Secord and Dr. Nahir Otaño Gracia.
Contact/submission email: email@example.com
Renaissance Conference of Southern California
Deadline: November 9th, 2020
The RCSC, a regional affiliate of the Renaissance Society of America, welcomes proposals for individual papers as well as complete panels on the full range of Renaissance disciplines (Art, Architecture, History, Literature, Music, Philosophy, Religion, Science). In keeping with the Plenary Roundtable theme, papers and panels that employ interdisciplinary modes of inquiry are especially encouraged. The RCSC promotes the study of the period c. 1300–1800, broadly interpreting the Renaissance within a global framework.
Saturday, 20 March 2021
Contact email: Barbara.Mello@csulb.edu
Call for Papers: Reclaiming Losses- Recovery, Reconquest, and Restoration in the Middle Ages
Deadline: November 6th, 2020
The conference will be held on March 6, 2021 and will take place over Zoom. Participation from any location is, therefore, warmly welcomed. This conference will consider how perceptions of legacy and entitlement stirred ambitions to reassert lost claims from Late Antiquity through the Late Middle Ages. From the last great war of antiquity between Persia and Rome to Charlemagne’s Roman renovatio, Byzantine expansion, contestation over Iberia, and the later crusades, many medieval conflicts were justified as campaigns to reconquer and restore past order. Beyond political and territorial pursuits, contemporaries sought to reclaim losses of all kinds, whether legal, economic, intellectual, social, cultural, physical, emotional, or spiritual. This conference will explore the circumstances under which medieval people made claims to past legacies, how they asserted those claims, and what it meant to express them as calls for restitution. How did contemporary understandings of legacy and entitlement factor into perceptions of loss? How did the motive to restore a loss—whether real or imagined—shape contemporary choices and their outcomes? When was loss understood as a fundamental challenge to individual or collective identity and what resulted from such challenges? To this end, we invite 300-word proposals for fifteen- to twenty-minute talks on topics examining recovery, reconquest, and restoration in the Middle Ages. We welcome proposals covering any region of the world reflecting the time frame encompassing approximately 500-1500 CE.
Contact/submission email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Additional contact email: email@example.com
Jan. 15 - Penn M@P Grad. Conference:
Conjuring the Past - Penn. Undergrad Conference - Deadline Dec. 7
Exploring the Renaissance 2020: An International Conference
deadline for submissions:
December 16, 2019
full name / name of organization:
South-Central Renaissance Conference / SCRC
The South-Central Renaissance Conference (SCRC) and its affiliate societies
Queen Elizabeth I Society
Andrew Marvell Society
Society for Renaissance Art History
invite conference papers for
Exploring the Renaissance 2020
March 26-28, 2020
Southern Methodist University- Dallas, TX
SCRC welcomes 15- to 20-minute papers on all aspects of Renaissance studies (music, art history, history, literature, language, philosophy, science, religion). Transatlantic, trans-European, and interdisciplinary approaches are particularly welcome.
To apply, submit two abstracts: 1) 400-500 words; and 2) about 100 words. Submit your abstracts through the abstract submission form at https://sites.psu.edu/scrc.
Deadline: December 16, 2019
For more information, including invited speakers and graduate travel fellowships: https://sites.psu.edu/scrc
Durham Early Modern Conference 8-10 July 2020
The deadline for submissions of Monday 11 November 2019.
We are also pleased to confirm the following keynote speakers:
· Professor Florence Hsia, Professor of History of Science, University of Wisconsin–Madison
· Professor Laurie Shannon, Franklyn Bliss Snyder Professor of Literature, Northwestern University
· Professor Marc Vanscheeuwijck, Professor of Musicology, University of Oregon
Call for papers
We welcome proposals for panels and strands from scholars interested in any aspect of the early modern period (c.1450 to c.1800) and particularly encourage panels which include papers from participants at a range of career stages.
Panel Proposals should comprise at least three papers. The usual panel structure is three papers, each lasting 20 minutes, with thirty minutes dedicated to discussion (90 minutes in total). Panels may also consist of four papers, each lasting 15 minutes, with the whole session being delivered within the 90-minute slot.
Strand Proposals: The conference organisers strongly encourage the submission of proposals for strands which will run through the conference. These should generally comprise at least two and no more than five related panels.
Please visit our website for more information about the 2020 Conference.
The Durham Early Modern Conference Organisers
Eco-Entanglements, c. 920-2020: Ruins, Graftings, Stratification
deadline for submissions:
November 15, 2019
full name / name of organization:
Kinney Center for Interdisciplinary Renaissance Studies
Kinney Center for Interdisciplinary Renaissance Studies, University of Massachusetts Amherst, February 22, 2020
What are the ecological affordances of thinking with the medieval and early modern past? How can the environmental humanities inspire eco-mimetic modes of thinking and writing? This think-tank conference invites research-in-progress that parses the entanglements of nature and culture, the human and the nonhuman, the material and the metaphysical, to explore how medieval and early modern ecocritical scholarship might speak directly to contemporary political and social concerns.
The conference will include three panels, grouped thematically according to distinct modes of ecological entanglement:
~ Ruins: Pre- and early modern texts, often imperfectly preserved, testify to the ruinous forces of nature as experienced in earlier centuries. The cultural artifacts damaged by water, rot, and fire evinced a “human” struggle with and against the “natural” world. Furthermore, the vast cultural, material, and textual ruins of medieval England were unearthed, consumed, and repurposed by early moderns in myriad ways. How might these entanglements of the past inform a modern posture toward environmental catastrophe? Do contemporary scholars have an obligation to salvage “dead” languages, “primitive” technologies, and “erroneous” science, and why?
~ Graftings: For the pre/early modern scholar, grafting as a motif allows us a model for ecocriticism that is entangled with the nonhuman world. Inspired and provoked by the early modern debates about the ethics of human gardeners mixing breeds and types of plant life, this panel is especially interested in experimental, multimodal, and/or interdisciplinary projects which articulate ecological questions across historical periodizations and traditional disciplines. For instance, how might we “graft” a pre/early modern cultural or material artifact onto 21st-century economics in order for that particular, vibrant object to bear fruit?
~ Stratification: Ruptured, layered, diachronous and synchronous, the geological record has produced a rich repertoire for rethinking human temporalities. Entangled with non-literary environments, pre/early modern literary texts often re-imagine futurity, causation, and pattern. How can ecological readings of literary texts help us to uncover alternatives to disciplinary periodization and heterolinearity? How might these texts prompt 21st century readers and scholars to be more receptive to, for example, “queer” temporalities or “crip” temporalities?
Each panelist will give a 10-minute proposal aimed at generating conversation. Emphasis will be placed on sparking exploratory, lateralized conversations between panelists and audiences. If you are interested in submitting an abstract for one of the panels below, please submit a 500-word abstract to conference organizers, John Yargo and Melissa Hudasko, at firstname.lastname@example.org by November 15, 2019.
2020 ACMRS Annual Conference: Unfreedom
February 7-8, 2020
Arizona State University
Unfreedom marked the lives of various people in the premodern world. Many factors played a role in shaping the forms of unfreedom prevalent in the premodern era: violence and coercion; shame and dishonor; disconnection of kin groups and destruction of social networks; and individual and collective strategies for economic, political, and social success that depended on the subjection of others.
This year’s conference will focus on those whose status was defined primarily in terms of unfreedom, coercion, and constraint rather than the enjoyment of freedoms or privileges, including but not limited to slaves, serfs, captives, prisoners, pledges, hostages, and forced marriage or concubinage.
We welcome panels and papers that theorize and/or historicize the status of unfreedom in medieval and renaissance contexts.