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San Apollinaris in Classe, Ravenna
San Apollinaris in Classe, Ravenna
(Photograph: Andrew Stephenson)


The 17th Vagantes Conference on Medieval Studies is currently seeking paper abstracts on any topic related to the Middle Ages. The conference will take place from March 22-24 2018 at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.

Vagantes is North America’s largest graduate-student conference for medieval studies. Since its founding in 2002, Vagantes has nurtured a lively community of junior scholars from across all disciplines. The 17th Vagantes Conference on Medieval Studies will feature thirty graduate-student papers and three distinguished keynote speakers. Out of consideration for graduate students’ budgets, Vagantes never charges a registration fee. The organizers of Vagantes believe that a diverse and inclusive view of the medieval period is essential. As such, graduate students in all disciplines are invited to submit paper abstracts of no more than 300 words on any topic relating to the Middle Ages.

The deadline for submissions is Friday November 3 2017. The online CFP is live and accessible at http://bit.ly/2pZcJIE

Questions? Contact the organizers at organizers@vagantesconference.org


23-24 March 2018 Université de Montréal

Fernand Braudel writes in his The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II: “The Mediterrenean has no unity but that created by the movements of men, the relationships they imply, and the routes they follow” [1972: 276]. The position of the Mediterranean, at the intersection of three continents, has made it a vital location in these movements of men, women and children. These movements continue, sometimes with tragic consequences, to this day. In the Middle Ages, the meeting of peoples and cultures enabled the exchange of ideas, traditions, texts, languages, and things. In recent years, scholars of Medieval Studies have made significant progress in defining and increasing our knowledge of the interactions in this Mediterranean space. From the art and architecture of the Taifa kingdoms to the phases and waves of Frankish colonisation in the Latin East, from the political and cultural role of religious military orders throughout the Mediterranean to the rich literary and cultural output of the eastern kingdoms, from the multiple roots of medieval Jewish thinking to the specific type of eastern Mediterranean French, medieval scholars of multiple disciplines and interdisciplinary approaches, have opened up new ways of studying and conceiving of these cultural interactions.

Some students of the Centre d’études médiévales present Meetings, Conflicts, Exchanges: the Mediterranean Space in the Middle Ages conference, which will take place in the Carrefour des Arts et des Sciences at the University of Montréal on 23rd and 24th March 2018. The conference looks primarily to address graduate students and early career scholars. Meetings, Conflicts, Exchanges aims to promote the sharing of ideas, methologies and avenues of research, with a focus on interdisciplinary approaches (from the fields of Literature, History, History of Art, Religious Studies, Languages, Philosophy, Theology, etc.).

Please send a single document to alessio.marziali.peretti@umontreal.ca containing:

  1. An abstract with a title (150 to 200 words)
  2. A short biography (specifying author’s name, affiliation, and contact information)

Presentations will be 20 minutes long with an additional 10 minutes for discussion. Presentation languages: French and English.

Deadline: 31 December 2017

Conference website


As medievalists, we access our period through the written records, sites and items that survive in order to form a deeper understanding of the period, one that goes beyond the page or the ruinous buildings that remain today. Using a wide range of sources is particularly valuable when considering the miraculous and the medicinal. After all, it is not just the writings, but the spaces, places and objects of both healthcare and of the holy which can inform and shape our research, and than of understanding. Indeed, in many instances these two elements combine, as can be seen through the production of miracle cures, the monastic collections of medical treatises, and medieval hospitals and monastic infirmaries.

But, what can these sources tell us of miracles, of medicine, of maladies? How did the miraculous and the medicinal relate to and/or oppose each other? What can we learn of faith and the faithful, and of ill-health and healing? It is questions such as these which the second ‘Maladies, Miracles and Medicine’ conference considers by bringing together post-graduate and early-career researchers who work on all aspects of the healing and the holy. The conference welcomes papers on all aspects of this theme whether your interests lie in archaeology, art, literature, medicine and science, or miracles and theology (or a little bit of everything). Particular themes to consider are:

  • Pilgrims as ‘patients’ and miraculous medicine
  • Hospitals, hospices and infirmaries as places of cure and places of piety
  • Objects of healing and/or objects of faith
  • Landscapes and locations of religion and remedy
  • The written word as place, space, or object of cure or of faith
  • Personal devotion and home-based healthcare

Proposals for twenty-minute papers fitting broadly into one of the above themes are welcomed from all post-graduate and early-career researchers before the deadline, 5 January 2018. Proposals of no more than 200 words, and further enquiries are to be sent to the organisers, Dr Ruth Salter and Frances Cook, via: gcms.reading@gmail.com. Please be aware that further details will be released closer to the date.


38th Annual Conference of the Center for Medieval Studies, Fordham University, New York, 24-25 March 2018

Dress was a primary expression of identity in the European middle ages, when individuals made strategic choices about clothing and bodily adornment (including hairstyle, jewelry, and other accessories) in order to communicate gender, ethnicity, status, occupation, and other personal and group identities. Because outward appearances were often interpreted as a reliable reflection of inner selves, medieval dress, in its material embodiment as well as in literary and artistic representations, carried extraordinary moral and social meaning, as well as offering seductive possibilities for self-presentation.

This conference aims to bring together recent research on the material culture and social meanings of dress in the Middle Ages to explore the following or related questions:

  • Given that very little actual clothing survives from the Middle Ages, how does our reliance on artistic, documentary, and literary representations affect the study of dress and its meaning?
  • What aspects of medieval dress were most effective in communicating identity and what messages did they send? What strategies were served by dress, either embodied or in representation?
  • How did religious, cultural, and economic factors, such as cross-cultural contact and trade and/or technology influence dress and its uses?
  • Did ‘fashion’ or the so-called ‘Western fashion system’ actually begin in the Middle Ages? If so, what social and cultural changes did it inspire or reflect?

Please submit an abstract and cover letter with contact information by September 15, 2017 to Center for Medieval Studies, FMH 405B, Fordham University, Bronx, NY 10458, or by email to medievals@fordham.edu, or by fax to 718-817-3987.


Nicosia, Cyprus, 25-27 March 2018

The 6th annual interdisciplinary conference on Byzantine, Medieval, Renaissance and Early Modern art, literary, archaeological, historical and cultural studies.

Keynote Lecture 2018: "Donor Portraits in Byzantine Art", to be presented by Professor Henri Frances (American University of Beirut)

The Academic Board for Othello’s Island invites applications to present papers at the 6th edition of Othello’s Island. This will take place in Nicosia, Cyprus, in March 2018.

We are interested in hearing papers on diverse aspects of Byzantine, Medieval, Renaissance and early modern art, literature, history, society and other aspects of culture.

Our remit is broad, and so papers do not have to be related to Shakespeare, Cyprus or the Mediterranean. It is worth looking at the range of papers from past conferences to see that previous speakers have covered topics ranging from slavery in medieval Cyprus and Malta, to the impact of Italian Renaissance art on Cypriot Byzantine painting, and even discussion on the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf.

In the six years of its existence, Othello’s Island has developed a reputation as one of the most liberal-minded and friendly medieval and renaissance studies conferences in the world today, and it is also genuinely interdisciplinary. In part this is due to the relatively small size of the event, which generates a true sense of community during the conference.

Our location in Cyprus allows for visits to some stunning medieval museums and other sites, including the French gothic cathedrals of St Sophia in Nicosia, and St Nicholas in Famagusta, and we are housed in the centre of the medieval old town of Nicosia, with its narrow winding streets and impressive city walls and gate houses.

Deadline for submissions is 22 December, 2017.

For the full call for papers please visit the Othello's Island 2018 website.

Lead Academic Coordinators: Professor James Fitzmaurice (Northern Arizona University, USA); Professor Lisa Hopkins (Sheffield Hallam University, UK); Dr Sarah James (University of Kent, UK; Dr Michael Paraskos FRSA (Imperial College London, UK)

Academic Board: Dr Stella Achillaos (University of Cyprus, Cyprus); Jane Chick (University of East Anglia, UK); Professor James Fitzmaurice (Northern Arizona University, USA); Professor Lisa Hopkins (Sheffield Hallam University, UK); Dr Sarah James (University of Kent, UK); Dr Richard Maguire (University of East Anglia, UK); Dr Michael Paraskos (Imperial College London, UK); Dr Laurence Publicover (University of Bristol, UK); Professor David Rollo (University of Southern California, USA); Dr Rita Severis (CVAR, Cyprus); Professor Astrid Swenson (Bath Spa University, UK); and, Dr Violetta Trofimova (St Petersburg University, Russia)


Senate House, London, 10–12 April 2018

Conference Website

Keynote: Margaret Graselli (National Gallery of Art, D.C.)

Convenors: Elizabeth Savage (Institute of English Studies) and Ad Stijnman (Leiden University)

Eighteenth-century book and print cultures are considered to be black and white (with a little red). Colour-printed material, like William Blake’s visionary books and French decorative art, is considered rare and exceptional. However, recent discoveries in archives, libraries and museums are revealing that bright inks were not extraordinary. Artistic and commercial possibilities were transformed between rapid technical advances around 1700 (when Johannes Teyler and Jacob Christoff Le Blon invented new colour printing techniques) and 1830 (when the Industrial Revolution mechanised printing and chromolithography was patented). These innovations added commercial value and didactic meaning to material including advertising, books, brocade paper, cartography, decorative art, fashion, fine art, illustrations, medicine, trade cards, scientific imagery, texts, textiles and wallpaper.

The saturation of some markets with colour may have contributed to the conclusion that only black-and-white was suitable for fine books and artistic prints. As a result, this printed colour has been traditionally recorded only for well-known ‘rarities’. The rest remains largely invisible to scholarship. Thus, some producers are known as elite ‘artists’ in one field but prolific ‘mere illustrators’ in another, and antecedents of celebrated ‘experiments’ and ‘inventions’ are rarely acknowledged. When these artworks, books, domestic objects and ephemera are considered together, alongside the materials and techniques that enabled their production, the implications overturn assumptions from the historical humanities to conservation science. A new, interdisciplinary approach is now required.

Following from Printing Colour 1400–1700, this conference will be the first interdisciplinary assessment of Western color printmaking in the long eighteenth century, 1700–1830. It is intended to lead to the publication of the first handbook colour printmaking in the late hand-press period, creating a new, interdisciplinary paradigm for the history of printed material.

Abstracts for papers or posters are encouraged from historians of all kinds of printed materials (including historians of art, books, botany, design, fashion, meteorology, music and science), conservators, curators, rare book librarians, practising printers and printmakers, and historians of collecting. Transport and accommodation offered to speakers. Please submit abstracts for papers (20 minutes) and posters (A1 portrait/vertical) by 1 October, 2017 at the Printing Colour 1700-1830 abstract submission web page.


Conference website

The Annual Conference at the Medieval and Renaissance Center (NYU) will be held on April 13-14 2018. This year’s theme will be The Worlds That Plague Made: Cultures of Disease in the Medieval and Early Modern Period. Keynote speakers will be Ann Carmichael, Indiana University and Susan Jones, University of Minnesota.

We invite submissions from any discipline in Medieval and Renaissance Studies on any aspect of the history of plague and disease.

Submissions will be accepted on a rolling basis until January 15 2018. Please submit a 250 word abstract and a brief CV to marc.center@nyu.edu (put “Conference Submission” in the subject line).


We invite submissions to our 8th annual Háskóli Íslands Student Conference on the Medieval North, which will take place at the University of Iceland, on April 13-14 2018.

This student organized two-day event is intended as an interdisciplinary forum for graduate students (MA and PhD level) of Old Norse and medieval Scandinavia. Students who have not given papers at an academic conference before are especially encouraged to submit.

In accordance with the HÍ Student Conference‘s previous installments the theme of this year is left broadly open for any independent research related to medieval Scandinavia.

Participation at the conference is not restricted to those enrolled in the University of Iceland, and interested students from other universities are encouraged to submit. In the past years the conference has becoming increasingly international, and last year the conference was attended by speakers from ten universities, in eight countries.

Submission Guidelines

If you wish to present a paper at the conference, please e-mail an abstract of 250-300 words to HIstudentconference@gmail.com before 5th of January 2018. The student conference committee reserves the right to make selections based on quality of written abstracts, adherence to submission guidelines, and timely submissions of abstracts.

The conference languages are Icelandic and English, and individual paper presentations will be 20 minutes in length, followed by a 10 minute discussion time.

Further information can be found on the conference blog. Please direct any further inquiries to the student conference committee via email (see above).


International Symposium, Bielefeld University, Germany, 13-14 April 2018

Until recently manifestations of piracy as well as of its state-sanctioned counterpart, privateering, were mostly discussed as geographically isolated cultural phenomena. Depictions of armed robbery at sea in the early modern period have traditionally tended to focus on specific regions associated with seemingly distinct types of seafarers and their piratical practices of prize-taking. Scholars of literature, culture and history have treated spatially and temporally dispersed occurrences of piracy such as Elizabethan privateers attacking the Spanish treasure fleet, Muslim corsairs capturing English merchant ships in the Mediterranean, Caribbean buccaneers taking part in the English project of nation-building and local English pirates roaming the coastlines of the British Isles as distinct and discrete naval phenomena. This trend to slot piracy into different conceptual categories is echoed by the associated designations - pirates, corsairs, privateers, buccaneers - each carrying its own set of geographical and historical associations. However, researchers have recently begun to question such compartmentalization. Over the last ten years, increasing attention has been devoted to the various affinities and intersections between different forms of (trans)atlantic and mediterranean piracy and their cultural imaginations.

Inspired by this development we suggest a comprehensive approach in literary and cultural studies as well as in history, which looks at the connection between pirates and other seafarers who navigate the North Sea, the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic in the early modern period and the cultural products they inspire. Such an approach not only includes a transatlantic perspective, it also allows us to revisit the literary negotiation of piracy by focusing on different aspects like the appearance of piratical protagonists in diverse geographical locations, changing negotiations of pirate identity, and the fluid boundary between illegal piracy and state-sanctioned privateering. With this symposium, we want to establish a dialogue between scholars working on diverse topics connected with literary, cultural and historical representations of piracy and seafaring. In this way, we want to explore the cultural as well as the ideological impact and function of the pirate figure in early modern popular culture.

Papers could focus on (but are not limited to) topics such as:

  • regional, national and transnational aspects of piracy
  • representations of pirates across different genres
  • piracy and gender: viragoes, damsels in distress, and (hyper)masculinity
  • maritime law: legal aspects of piracy and privateering
  • heroes and villains: the pirate as a criminal and rebel
  • piracy, adventure, and popular entertainment
  • the relationship between piracy and privateering
  • Muslim corsairs in the English imagination
  • Caribbean buccaneers and the formation of Empire
  • piracy and early modern politics

If you are interested in contributing, please send a brief abstract (max. 300 words) for a 30-minute paper to the organizers by August 9, 2017:


Sewanee Medieval Colloquium, The University of the South, Sewanee, TN, 13-14 April 2018

The Sewanee Medieval Colloquium invites papers exploring aspects of law, order, disorder and resistance in all aspects of medieval cultures. This includes legal codes, social order, orthodoxy and heterodoxy, poetic or artistic form, gender construction, racial divisions, scientific and philosophical order, the history of popular rebellion, and other ways of conceptualizing our theme.

Papers should be twenty minutes in length, and commentary is traditionally provided for each paper presented. We invite papers from all disciplines, and encourage contributions from medievalists working on any geographic area. A seminar will also seek contributions; please look for its separate CFP soon. Participants in the Colloquium are generally limited to holders of a Ph.D. and those currently in a Ph.D. program.

Please submit an abstract (approx. 250 words) and brief c.v., via the Law and (Dis)order website, no later than 26 October, 2017.

If you wish to propose a full panel session, please submit abstracts and vitae for all participants in the panel.

Completed papers, including notes, will be due no later than 13 March, 2018.

For more information, contact:

Dr Matthew W. Irvin, Director, Sewanee Medieval Colloquium

Follow us on Twitter: @SewaneeMedieval


Queen’s university Belfast, 13-15 April 2018

We are pleased to invite abstracts of c. 250 words related to pain in the middle ages. Topics may include but are not limited to :

  • collective pain
  • depictions of pain,
  • explanations of pain,
  • judicial literature,
  • medical literature,
  • memory and pain,
  • narratives of suffering,
  • pain and creativity,
  • pain and pleasure,
  • psychological pain,
  • social pain,
  • religious literature,
  • suffering in the afterlife

Please send abstracts of ca. 250 words, along with a short academic biography, to borderlinesxxii@gmail.com

The deadline for abstracts is 5 February 2018.


Deadline for submissions: February 6 2018

Medieval and Renaissance Student Association California State University, Long Beach

Contact: medren.csulb@gmail.com

The Medieval and Renaissance Student Association (MaRSA) of California State University, Long Beach is seeking individual papers as well as panel submissions for their graduate student conference. The conference will be held at the Karl Anatol Center on the campus of CSULB on April 19-20 2018.

This year’s theme, “In the Margins,” engages the spaces, both literal and theoretical, that have been allocated to the periphery of the medieval and Renaissance period. Thus, papers and topics that MaRSA would like to engage with embrace the many facets of medieval and Renaissance marginality. As an interdisciplinary conference, we welcome submissions from a wide array of disciplines focusing on the art, literature, and history of the period. Paper and panel topics might address issues (but are not limited to) the following:

  • The relationship between marginalia and text
  • Liminal spaces and/or identities in medieval and/or Renaissance narratives
  • Peripheral and/or non-literary medieval and Renaissance texts
  • The appropriation of medieval and Renaissance culture in contemporary political movements and/or popular culture
  • Educational and pedagogical approaches to the marginalization of medieval and Renaissance texts
  • The boundaries between body and soul as depicted in hagiographical literature and art
  • Depictions of alterity in Shakespeare and/or other Early Modern Drama
  • Sexuality and nontypical gender expression in medieval and Renaissance texts and/or culture

Presentations should run for approximately 15 minutes. Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words along with a current CV by email to medren.csulb@gmail.com by February 6 2018.


Graduate Student Conference, University of Cambridge, April 20 2018

The annual Cambridge Graduate Conference for Pre-1750 Literature welcomes proposals for papers on the theme of “Attention and Distraction” from MA and PhD students, and recent graduates in any discipline.

For pre-modern readers, what did it mean to “attend” (or fail to
attend) to a text? What roles do boredom and distraction have to play in the reading process? How do we attend to premodern literature in our moment of supposedly short attention spans?

Topics might include:
* The attention economy
* Readerly distraction and boredom
* Prayer and concentration
* Popular entertainment and divertissement
* “Information overload”

Proposals are due Wednesday, January 31, 2018. They should include a title, brief abstract (200 words), and a short biography including your university and department affiliation. Speakers will present for 15 minutes, with time for questions at the end.

Travel grants for speakers are available, and lunch and refreshments will be provided.

Please direct proposals and questions to ATTENTIONANDDISTRACTION@GMAIL.COM
For more information, please visit the Attention and Distraction website.


Florence, 20 April 2018

The 2018 IASEMS Graduate Conference at The British Institute in Florence is a one-day interdisciplinary and bilingual English-Italian forum open to PhD students and researchers who have obtained their doctorates within the past 5 years. This year’s conference will focus on the theme of conversion, a fascinating phenomenon, a promise of newness that blends elements of individual experience with larger problems of historical change.

The ideological and spiritual life of early modern Britain finds a special interpretative key in the notion of conversion, whether perceived as an individual response to a religious and political challenge, a community reaction to political upheaval, or a social change brought about by the innovations of modernity.

The goal of this Conference is to develop an understanding of conversion that will address epistemological, psychological, political, spiritual and technological kinds of transformation, perceived both as subjective and collective change. Therefore conversion is to be understood in its broadest possible sense, and nor merely as a religious phenomenon.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to the following:

forms of conversion, sacred and secular, ie awakening to a new faith, an intensification of existing beliefs, an embracing of a (radical) political movement, etc.

  • conversional thinking and practice
  • early modern textual ‘conversions’, ie from manuscript to print, from one format to another, from one genre to another
  • relationships among transformation, freedom and power
  • forms of religious dissent in early modern British culture
  • religious change and gender
  • how early modern English theatre and other theatrical practices represent, adopt, transform, relocate forms of conversion
  • conversion narratives
  • the phenomenon of forced conversion
  • authenticity and pretense in conversion
  • religious conversion as catalyst of other transformations (eg translation, alchemy, enthusiasm, etc.)
  • technologies of transformation

Candidates are invited to send a description of their proposed contribution according to the following guidelines:

  • the candidate should provide name, institution, contact info, title and a short abstract of the proposed contribution (300 words for a 20-minute paper), explaining the content and intended structure of the paper, and including a short bibliography
  • abstracts are to be submitted by Sunday 29 October 2017 by email to ilaria.natali@unifi.it
  • all proposals will be blind-vetted. The list of selected papers will be available by the end of November 2017
  • each finished contribution should not exceed 20 minutes and is to be presented in English (an exception will be made for Italian candidates of departments other than English, who can give their papers in Italian)
  • Candidates whose first language is not English will need to have their proposals and final papers checked by a mother-tongue speaker
  • participants will be asked to present a final draft of the paper ten days before the Conference
  • Selected speakers who are IASEMS members can apply for a small grant

For more information please see the IASEMS Conference 2018 website.

For further information please contact Ilaria Natali (ilaria.natali@unifi.it)


Princeton University,  April 20 2018

Keynote Speaker: Professor Michael Bailey

In an age when authorities attempt to assault our modern modes of critical thinking, the term “superstition” and its premodern associations take on rearranged values. Current political discourse denounces fake news and climate change as humbug with a zeal not unlike that of medieval and early modern establishments censuring false prophets and fallacious astrologers. Given these similarities, the classic narrative of a medieval society emerging into a modern one, “the disenchantment of the world” (Max Weber), urgently needs reappraisal. This conference proposes the examination of a wide range of evidence in various genres over time in order to foster this dialogue. In returning to the original meaning of “superstition” as an excessive fearfulness or belief, or a misapprehended and abused knowledge of a supernatural subject, how can we refine our understanding of superstition and magic in the premodern world? How can we make the overlaps between science, superstition, and magic productive?

We invite interdisciplinary submissions on diverse topics related to medieval and early modern superstition and magic. Some themes of the conference include, but are not limited to:

  • Control and influence exerted by the Church and universities
  • The historical development of demonology
  • The Witch Crisis: gender and authority
  • Elite vs. folk magic; paganism and popular religion
  • Heresy and superstition
  • Depiction of magical elements in literature and visual culture
  • The impact of various religious reform movements, including the Reformation and Counterreformation, on belief, magic, and ritual
  • Music and metaphysics
  • Oaths, incantations, and spells: the power of words
  • Natural philosophy: astrology, alchemy, medical practices, etc.
  • Material history and archaeology
  • Co-mingling of Eastern and Western traditions; book magic; Kabbalah
  • Esoteric belief systems and the rise of secret societies
  • The law: ordeals, witch-hunts, and policing of superstitious practices

In order to support participation by speakers from outside the northeastern United States, we are offering limited subsidies to help offset the cost of travel to Princeton. Financial assistance may not be available for every participant, with funding priority going to those who have the farthest to travel. Speakers will have the option of staying with a resident graduate student to defray their expenses.

Interested graduate students should submit abstracts of no more than 500 words to Sonja Andersen and Jonathan Martin at superstition2018@gmail.com by February 15, 2018.
All applicants will be notified about their submissions by February 24, 2018. Presentations should be no longer than 20 minutes.


Deadline for submissions: March 1 2018

Contact: npcebl@brandonu.ca

Brandon University, Manitoba, Canada, April 26-28 2018

We invite abstracts for 20-minute conference presentations on any aspect of British literature from the 18th-century and earlier, for the 2018 NPCEBL annual conference. Scholars from any academic rank (including undergraduate students) are invited to apply.

Our keynote speaker will be Dr Randall Martin, Professor at the University of New Brunswick, and author of Shakespeare and Ecology (Oxford University Press, 2015), speaking on the subject of

“Shakespeare and the Natural World”

To complement Dr Martin’s keynote address, we particularly solicit abstracts that relate to “Early British Literature and the Natural World,” because “this our life, … / Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks, / Sermons in stones, and good in everything” (As You Like It, 2.1.15-17). Of course, any and all papers on any aspect of early British literature are welcome and encouraged.

Please submit abstracts, via email, no later than March 1, 2018 to npcebl@brandonu.ca

For more information, please contact Dr Deanna Smid, Dr Lesley Glendinning, Reyna Nadeau, or Emily Kroeker at npcebl@brandonu.ca


The Anglia Ruskin Centre for Science Fiction and Fantasy (CSFF), Anglia Ruskin University, 28 April 2018

Despite science fiction’s associations with modernity and popular culture, it seems haunted by the literary canon. Shakespeare, in particular, has had a significant influence on the genre. Many texts and films rework or allude to Shakespeare’s plays. A well known example is Forbidden Planet (1956) which reimagines The Tempest in space. More recently, Iain Pears wove plot strands from As You Like It into the complex triple narrative of his novel Arcadia (2015).

Shakespeare has appeared as a character in many science fiction texts. Often in these he becomes a kind of touchstone for humanity - In the Doctor Who episode ‘The Shakespeare Code’ (2007) the Doctor refers to him as ‘the most human human there’s ever been.’ His plays sometimes have the power to prove that the earth should be spared from alien wrath - at other times they represent a consolation for the scattered remnants of humanity after a terrible catastrophe.

Over the decades writers have repeatedly been drawn to encounters between Shakespeare and non-humans - robots, aliens, post-humans - imagining their possible responses to his work. Science fiction has also had an impact on the way Shakespeare’s plays have been adapted and performed. In his 2016 BBC production of the play, Russell T. Davies transplanted A Midsummer Night’s Dream from ancient Athens to a dystopian future.

Papers are invited for a one-day conference on all aspects of the intersection between Shakespeare and science fiction. Proposals are welcomed from researchers at all stages of their career, including graduate students, independent scholars and creative writers.

Please send a 300 word abstract and a CV to sarah.brown@anglia.ac.uk by Friday 6 October 2017.


30 April-1 May 2018, Trinity Hall, University of Cambridge

In the early modern world, festivals and diplomatic ceremonial often involved the movement of individuals and courtly retinues across borders. They could therefore serve as sites of interaction between religious, political, linguistic, visual, musical, literary, theatrical or material cultures. Often these interactions were accompanied by underlying tensions, which could be made more or less explicit in the diverse ‘languages’ of festival, depending on their historical contexts and the objectives of organisers and participants. This interdisciplinary conference of the Society for European Festivals Research will combine papers by doctoral/ early-career colleagues and experienced scholars, and will focus on the period from approximately 1500 to 1750. Papers will be welcome relating to any region of Europe, or any other area of the early modern world with which Europeans came into contact.

If you wish to propose a paper for this conference of the Society for European Festivals Research, please email a brief abstract, not exceeding 300 words, to Richard Morris (richardmorris@cantab.net), adding a short cv, including current academic/museum/gallery affiliation. Papers will typically be 20 minutes in length. If current graduate students would prefer to offer a shorter (10 minute) paper, they should state this when they submit their abstract.

Submission date for papers: 23 February 2018


Organizers: Stephanie Grace-Petinos (University of Wisconsin-Madison); Deborah McGrady (University of Virginia); Elizabeth Robertson (University of Glasgow); Sara Rychtarik (Graduate Center, CUNY)

May 4 2018, CUNY Graduate Center

For medievalists, interdisciplinary work has always been a necessity, and our major annual conferences reflect this need to broaden our understanding of the dynamic and widespread time period. While medieval scholars may specialize in one area of medieval studies, they also understand that separating traditions – by culture, language, religion, geographic borders, etc. – can create a limited and narrow understanding of the Middle Ages. This is especially the case for medievalists who study medieval England and France. Although, or perhaps because, they were frequently engaged in war, these two countries had many rich literary and cultural exchanges over the course of the Middle Ages. For Middle English scholars, French literature and music are often valuable resources for the sources of the works of popular authors such as Geoffrey Chaucer, and so are often read in medieval English classes. Yet why is Chaucer not routinely read in French departments? Or, on the other side, medieval English texts, law, as well as literature, were often written in French, not English. But British literature survey courses often limit their coverage of the Anglo-French corpus to one or two lais of Marie de France.

This one-day conference offers the opportunity for scholars, whether they usually preserve or cross departmental lines in their own work, to come together with scholars from departments with whom they may not routinely discuss academic work/research/approaches. While this conference focuses on literary and cultural exchanges between England and France, we are not discounting other traditions and welcome submissions for individual papers or full panel proposals that also incorporate other perspectives, particularly non-western.

Topics to be discussed can include, but are by no means limited to:

  • A text that belongs to both the English and French traditions
  • A text, legend or corpus of characters that exist with variations in each tradition
  • A textual theme shared by both traditions
  • A historical event that occurred in both traditions (i.e. The Hundred Years War)
  • Religious orders or religious figures prominent in both England and France
  • Historical or literary figures that travel throughout England and France
  • French texts that circulate within England; English texts that circulate within France; English and/or French texts that circulate within both England and France

This event is hosted by Pearl Kibre Medieval Study at the CUNY Graduate Center, with contributions by the Medieval Studies Certificate Program.

Please send abstracts of 250 words to pkmsconference@gmail.com by December 31 2017.


University of Reading, 4-5 May 2018

Keynote: Dr Chiara O. Tommasi (University of Pisa): Esotericism in Classical and Late Antiquity

Late Antiquity was once regarded as an age of decadence and barbarisation as well as a ‘marginal’ field of study. Those days are over. Late Antiquity has now its own  place in academia and is considered a hot topic by both Classicists and historians of the Early Middle Ages, as well as scholars of religious studies, archaeology, art and philosophy in a fruitful exchange among disciplines.

The study of Late Antiquity involves a wide variety of disciplines. Our PhD Colloquium on Late Antiquity will take place at the University of Reading in May 4-5, 2018. The aim of our Colloquium is to make the most of such diversification by bringing together  and achieving synergy among PhD Students from across the UK and abroad working on Late Antiquity. 

Each paper (15 min) will be followed by a personalised response from a senior scholar (10 min) assigned by the organisers and a plenary discussion. Each delegate will circulate  his or her paper a week in advance to his or her respondent. 

Additionally, we will also host a poster session, with a £50 voucher prize for the best poster.

Lastly, the Colloquium will include a visit to the Ure Museum of Classical Archaeology of the University of Reading. 

We welcome submissions of papers and/or posters from disciplines including (but not limited to) Greek and Latin Literature, History, Archaeology, Art, Philosophy and Theology: 

Option A: papers (15  min)

Send an abstract of your paper (400 words) to readinglateantiquity@gmail.com by 10 November 2017. Please also specify your affiliation.

Option B: posters

Send a brief abstract (200 words) or outline of your poster to readinglateantiquity@gmail.com by 15 November 2017. Please also specify your affiliation.  

Please note that, as the event is specifically aimed at PhD students, we can only accept submissions from PhD students. However, Masters students and early career researchers  are warmly invited to attend and participate in the debates.

For further enquiries, please contact Lorenzo Livorsi (l.livorsi@pgr.reading.ac.uk),  Ilaria Scarponi (ilaria.scarponi@reading.ac.uk) or Fiona McMeekin (f.p.mcmeekin@pgr.reading.ac.uk).


University of Alcalá, Guadalajara Campus, 9-11 May 2018

We are pleased to announce that the 29th International Conference of the Spanish and Portuguese Society for English Renaissance Studies (Sederi) will be held at the University of Alcalá’s campus in Guadalajara (Spain) on 9-11 May 2018. As the English translation (“river of stones”) of our host city’s originally Arabic name (“wād al-ḥaŷarah”) reminds us, linguistic and cultural transfer often entails metamorphosis. In this case, the figuratively dead name regains metaphorical life around its own metamorphic fusion of liquid and solid states. This conference takes as its theme the notion of changing states and the cognate trope of metamorphosis in early modern England. In a period of great political, social, scientific and cultural transformation, a reality in flux was challenging models of stability and permanence, while identity in all ambits of individual and collective life was up for grabs. The conference therefore calls for papers and round tables on ideas of metamorphosis in early modern England and welcomes contributions on the following and other related subjects and issues:

  • Tropes of metamorphosis in scientific, political and literary discourse
  • Comic and tragic transformations
  • Metamorphic subjectivities: sexual, national, racial and ethnic, cultural or religious
  • Transformations of Ovid’s Metamorphoses
  • Transplanted selfhood: exiled and colonial identities, cultural mimesis and co-adaptation
  • Stability and permanence, innovation and revolution, mutability and decline
  • Natural transformations, monsters and prodigies
  • Translation, adaptation and transfiguration within and across genres and art forms
  • “Transport”, ecstasy, transmigration, metempsychosis and out-of-body experiences
  • Early modern Epicureanism
  • English transformed: language change in the early modern period
  • Rhetoric of change: metaphor, allegory, symbol

The following guest lecturers have already confirmed their participation:

  • Clark Hulse (University of Illinois at Chicago)
  • Lynn Enterline (Vanderbilt University)
  • Farah Karim-Cooper (Shakespeare’s Globe)

Papers will last 20 minutes and will be followed by 10 minutes of discussion. Proposals must include the following information:

  • The full title of your paper.
  • A 200-word abstract.
  • Any technical requirements for the presentation.
  • Your name, postal address and e-mail address.
  • Your institutional affiliation
  • Your SEDERI membership status (member, non-member, application submitted)

Please submit your proposal as an e-mail attachment (preferably .doc or .docx) to organisation sederi29@uah.es before 11 February 2018. For more details about the conference, you are invited to visit the Changing States conference website.


Congress on Medieval Studies website

The 53rd International Congress on Medieval Studies takes place 10-13 May 2018 at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo.


Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds, sponsored sessions at Kalamazoo, May 10-13 2018

These sessions will concentrate upon the experiences and bodies of the old and the young. Recognising that the medieval normative body (male, middle aged and white) has influenced the way we look at the MA, the intention of these sessions is to highlight the experiences of children and the elderly which are outside the boundaries of said norm. Furthermore, we wish to gain a greater understanding of how other factors (gender, race, ability, wealth, bodily status, power) intersect with and impact upon the experiences of elderly and young people. While medieval childhood studies is by no means a neglected field, historiography has recently turned away from a ‘panhistorical and essentialist’ child-centric model. This allows us to examine the experiences of a child within culturally specific contexts in which it might be neglected, abandoned or dismissed. Meanwhile, the old are often marginalised in scholarship, within the medieval discourse and in our lived reality. The hope is that by examining their experiences in concert with one another, we will be able to build up a clearer understanding of the lived experience of the old and the young in the Middle Ages.

Intersectional, interdisciplinary abstracts would be particularly welcomed.

Possible Topics Include:

  • Specific historical experiences of being young and old
  • Body as physical entity and as a site of rhetoric
  • Dual nature of body: site of discourse and identity
  • Descriptions of old and young bodies

Please submit a 250-word proposal for a 15- to 20-minute paper as well as a Participant Information Form to medievalbodiesignored@gmail.com by September 15, 2017.


Panel session at the 53rd International Congress on Medieval Studies, May 10-13 2018.

The ‘animal turn’ is one of the newest and most exciting developments in medieval scholarship. Researchers are increasingly interrogating the role of animals in society and culture, the interaction between human and beast, and the formation of human and non-human identities.

The Medieval Romance Society is hosting two inter-related sessions on the role of animals in romances at the 53rd International Congress on Medieval Studies 2018, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo. We welcome papers which draw on a broad range of methodologies and address a variety of themes relating to animals.

Session I: The Animal in Medieval Romance I: The Animal as Friend
This session invites papers examining the co-dependent relationships between animals and humans in romances. We encourage a broad interpretation of this theme, including cross-species friendships, sexual and romantic couplings, domestication and farmyard animals, and animals as parental surrogates.

Session II: The Animal in Medieval Romance II: The Animal as Product
This session welcomes papers which examine how animal bodies are exploited in medieval romances. Even after death, animals continue to exert their presence in romance narrative through their earthly remains. The genre’s commodification of bestial bodies also extends beyond texts to the physical product of vellum upon which they are transmitted. Papers might explore themes of butchery, the wearing of skins and furs, the use of bone and ivory, and the production of parchment and manuscript-binding.

Please send abstracts of 250-300 words to Tim Wingard at tw659@york.ac.uk by 15th September, 2017. For more information, please visit The Animal in Medieval Romance website.


“Citing Authorities in the Middle Ages” at the 53rd International Congress on Medieval Studies (May 10-13, 2018), organized by Elizabeth C. Teviotdale and sponsored by the Medieval Institute, Western Michigan University.

Call for papers deadline: September 15 2018.

Medieval Christian authors and scribes cited the sources for information and ideas, often the Bible and works of the patristic fathers, in a variety of ways. Famously, the Carolingian theologian Paschasius Radbertus named his patristic sources in the prologue to his treatise on the Eucharist, and for much of the manuscript tradition, some (but curiously not all) of those authors were identified as sources of particular ideas by shortened names (AM, HIL, etc.) in the margins of the treatise. Authorities for ideas in medieval texts were often identified not by name at all but by sobriquet, as was the case for Averroes, so often referred to simply as “the commentator. ” This session seeks to bring together papers exploring aspects of attribution in medieval texts and manuscripts.

Submissions: e.teviotdale@att.net


International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 10-13 2018

“Medieval Settlement and Landscape” builds on the success of the three sessions organized on this theme during the previous two ICMS. The positive levels of engagement stemming from these sessions have duly encouraged us to commence working towards an edited volume that will highlight the major findings presented at ICMS. This publication will reflect the intellectually stimulating conversations provoked by the combined sessions.

The session for ICMS 2018 will engage with the dynamic interdisciplinary sub-field of medieval settlement studies. Medieval settlement and landscape studies, more generally, have combined theories and techniques from a variety of disciplines, most overtly those of history, archaeology and geography. Interdisciplinarity has to some extent become something of a buzzword in medieval studies, but it is an integral aspect of any successful academic study into settlements and landscapes. The ICMS session will bring together colleagues from the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences to strengthen collaborative efforts and assist in answering common research questions. We particularly encourage the inclusion of young scholars with innovative work in our panel.

We encourage the exploration of technology to understand the place of medieval settlements and landscapes in the modern world. These multidisciplinary approaches include digital humanities and computer applications, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Lidar, and 3D printing, but also scientific contributions. Our session further engages with textual research. In particular, manuscript materials in archives still remain underutilized by practitioners. Digital scholarship will alleviate many of these logistical problems. The session will provide methodological examples of best practice for scholars with interests in applying medieval evidence sources from outside their field of study.

We aim to incorporate perspectives from across Europe, especially when considering the modern heritage issues presented by these medieval settlements and landscapes. This is an issue of serious scholarly and public concern. Today, with far-reaching economic limitations, heritage preservation is a worrying issue for all practitioners. It is beneficial for the disciplines as a whole to contemplate the efforts made by scholars from a variety of multidisciplinary fields and geographic regions in addressing these concerns. We must also remember that a further benefit of working with physical places and spaces is providing a means of engaging with the public. Presenters will be urged to consider this positioning of the medieval within the modern and to highlight the innovative contributions their research can make to this common experience.

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words together with a short bio and a completed Participant Information Form to session organizers Vicky McAlister vmcalister@semo.edu or Jennifer Immich immichjl@gmail.com by September 15. Please include your name, title, and affiliation on the abstract itself. All abstracts not accepted for the session will be forwarded to Congress administrators for consideration in general sessions, as per Congress regulations.


Conference website

Deadline for submissions: January 19, 2018

University of Manchester

Contact: citiesofstrangeness@gmail.com

The Northern Premodern Seminar: Cities of Strangeness, 1350-1700
strangers / estrangement / becoming-strange

Friday 11th May, University of Manchester

Looking one way, you see a beautiful virgin: another way, some deformed monster. Cast an eye upon her profession, she is a well-graced creature: turn it upon her conversation, she is a misshapen stigmatic. View her peace, she is fairer than the daughters of men: view her pride, the children of the Hittites and Amorites are beauteous to her. Think of her good works, then blessed art thou of the Lord; number her sins, then how is that faithful city become an harlot!
Thomas Adams, Eirenopolis: The City of Peace (1622)

The period spanning the years 1350-1700 saw a massive expansion in urban populations, transforming social formations. Changes and developments in medieval and early modern cities were intricately tied up with trade, migration, politics, economics, shifting possibilities for social mobility, and the growth of commodity culture; the relationships of individuals and communities to, and in, the city were frequently characterised by alienation and disorder. The early meanings of ‘strange’ as foreign or alien, and also new, wondrous, and astonishing, point towards premodern cities as sites of danger, possibility, conflict, and discovery.

Cities of Strangeness, 1350-1700 is an interdisciplinary one-day conference exploring the centrality of strangeness and estrangement in literary, artistic, and cultural representations of the premodern city. To what extent is the experience of the premodern city characterised by estrangement or alienation? How did the growth and transformation of urban spaces across the late medieval and early modern period alter social identities and formations? What were the relationships between a city and its strangers? How do literature and art respond to cities in strange ways?

We invite proposals for papers that explore any of the following, or related topics, in relation to late medieval and early modern cities:

  • strange bodies, strange creatures
  • the psychoanalysis of estrangement
  • race, immigration, emigration, diaspora
  • alienation and capitalism, class and poverty
  • protests and riots
  • gender, sex and sexuality
  • heterotopias and liminal spaces
  • uncanny, imaginary, mystical or supernatural cities
  • strange languages, strange speech, strange sound

We welcome papers from scholars working in literature, visual cultures, history, religious studies, urbanism, and other related disciplines. We encourage papers that take a cross-period or interdisciplinary approach.

Confirmed plenary speakers: Adam Hansen (University of Northumbria), Anke Bernau (University of Manchester), and Matthew Dimmock (University of Sussex).

Please send 250 word abstracts for fifteen-minute papers to Annie Dickinson and Laura Swift at citiesofstrangeness@gmail.com by Friday 19 January, 2018. Please include a brief biography.

The venue is wheelchair accessible, with accessible, gender-neutral toilets and designated parking bays. Information about prayer rooms, dietary requirements, assistance dogs, hearing loops, transport and accommodation can be found on the website; please contact the organisers if there is anything you would like to discuss in advance.

Lunch, refreshments, and a wine reception will be provided. Replies to all submissions will be sent in early February 2018, when registration will open.

The conference is kindly sponsored by artsmethods@manchester.



Asian Shakespeare Association Conference, Manila, May 28-30 2018

Shakespeare, Traffics, Tropics is the 3rd biennial conference of the Asian Shakespeare Association jointly hosted by the Ateneo de Manila University and the University of the Philippines Diliman. It features leading Shakespearean scholars and theatre practitioners from around the globe with a keen interest in Shakespeare as produced in and by Asia and a mini-festival of Shakespearean performances from Japan and the Philippines.

The conference is scheduled on May 28-30, 2018 at the Arete, the new creative and innovation hub of the Ateneo de Manila University and at the College of Arts and Letters of UP Diliman. Prof. Peter Holland, Chairman of the International Shakespeare Association, will deliver the keynote address. A second keynote speaker is also under consideration. The conference will include plenary, panel, and seminar sessions on several aspects of Shakespearean pedagogy, publication, translation, adaptation, and theatrical histories in various Asian locations.

Performances to be staged include:

  • The Tempest by the Yamanote Jijoshe company of Tokyo directed by Masahiro Yasuda
  • Taming of the Shrew by an Ateneo theater group to be directed by Professor Ian McClennan (Thornloe University, Canada),
  • Rdu3, a contemporary Philippine take on Shakespeare’s Richard III to be co-directed by Anton Juan (University of Notre Dame, USA) and Ricardo Abad (Ateneo de Manila)

Spread out over 7, 641 tropical islands speaking 78 languages, the Philippines has a rich history combining Asian, European, and American influences. It is no stranger to traffic, in various forms, and negotiating this vibrant, colorful, and sometimes chaotic mix, often entails giving in to an easygoing way of life and enjoying oneself along the way. Quezon City, the conference site, is the most populous city of Metropolitan Manila that acts as the country’s political, social, economic, cultural, and educational center. The adjacent university campuses of the Ateneo and UP are sprawling green spaces that offer a respite from the flurry of life in one of the world’s largest cities.


Traffic is both a product of robust movements but can also refer to points of entanglements, both flows and disruptions that arise from global exchanges in goods, people, and even, Shakespeare. The Conference welcomes papers that use the idea of traffic whether construed as mobility, immobility, trade, enterprise, translation, exchange –- licit or illicit — as a key concept to contemporize Shakespeare and his place in today’s world. It seeks to explore Shakespeare as both purveyor and product, as either agent or victim of commodification, as subject and object of a wide array of linguistic, theatrical, economic, political, and social transactions. Papers may also take off from the prologue in Romeo and Juliet—“the two-hours traffic of the stage” – and revolve around performance and intercultural movements implied in Asian Shakespearean performances. A secondary theme, Shakespearean Tropics, is not only a nod to the conference location but also seeks to explore tropical Asian Shakespeare as a potentially distinct body of work with unique connections to tropical worlds elsewhere.

Topics may include but are not limited to:

  • The Shakespearean Trade
  • Shakespearean Entrepreneurs Shakespeare and Cultural Exchange
  • Shakespeare and the Global Popular
  • Shakespeare and/as Commodity Transactional Shakespeare
  • Archives and Inventories
  • Shakespearean stocks in global markets
  • Shakespeare and Exploitation
  • Theatrical Trades, Human Trafficking, and Migration
  • Materialist Approaches to Shakespeare
  • Shakespearean Performance Economies in Asia
  • Shakespeare and the Book Trade
  • The Travelling Theatre
  • Shakespeare in the Tropics
  • Hot Shakespeare

Selected papers from the conference will be published as a special issue of Kritika Kultura, a Thomson-Reuters-indexed and Scopus-listed internationally refereed online journal on literary, language and cultural studies published by the Ateneo de Manila University.

Submission Guidelines

The conference includes both paper sessions and seminars. Graduate students are welcome.

  1. Paper: please submit a 250-word abstract, plus a short, 100-word bio
  2. Seminar: please submit a 250-word description of the seminar, plus a short bio including a summary of your previous seminar experience
  3. Deadline: Deadline for submission is 15 September, 2017. Results will be announced in October 2017. A second call for seminar papers will also be released


Submissions and queries should be sent to asa2018@ateneo.edu or admin@AsianShakespeare.org.

For conference updates, please visit the Asian Shakespeare Association website or the conference website.


We invite applications for participation in the second annual Dartmouth Summer History Institute (Tuesday May 29-Saturday June 2). The theme for 2018 is New Directions in Medieval Religious History. The aim of the Summer Institute is to bring together the most promising young scholars working on medieval religious history from across our field, to read and workshop pieces of their historical writing as they embark on the transition from dissertation to book, in order to take stock of emerging considerations and approaches. We are interested in all aspects of religious history, including its links to political, social, cultural, and intellectual history. Applicants should be in the process of completing their Ph.D. dissertations or in the early stages of revising the Ph.D. as a book manuscript. (Students finishing Ph.D.s in Spring or Summer of 2018 are encouraged to apply.) Participants will each furnish a draft article or working dissertation/book chapter central to or exemplary of their larger historical intervention to be workshopped. In addition to workshopping individual pieces of writing, the Institute will include a variety of fora (receptions, dinners, and lectures) to discuss theoretical and methodological issues in the company of invited senior scholars. For information about the inaugural Institute (on the theme of modern European Intellectual History) held in 2017, please visit the Dartmouth History Institute website.

Participation in the Institute includes travel, room, and board. To apply send a CV and letter of application with 1-2 paragraphs describing the project and the piece you would intend to workshop by March 1, 2018 to Professors Cecilia Gaposchkin and Walter Simons, Dept. of History. All inquiries, correspondence, and applications can be sent to Dartmouth.History.Institute@dartmouth.edu


Abstracts due January 31 for Medieval Mystical Theology in Dialogue with Contemporary Thought: An International Conference on the Occasion of the 750th Anniversary of the Death of Beatrice of Nazareth.

Held May 30-June 2 2018 at KU Leuven, in Leuven, Belgium. Abstracts invited on MANY aspects of medieval religious devotion, vernacular spirituality, mysticism, women’s religious experience and more.

**Keynotes include Professors Bernard McGinn, Amy Hollywood and Carolyn Muessig**

The Mystical Theology Network invites abstracts for our annual conference–held this year at KU Leuven in Leuven Belgium. 2018 marks the 750th anniversary of the death of Beatrice of Nazareth, one of the earliest authors of mystical treatises in the vernacular in the Low Countries. Beatrice’s text and context illustrate some of the most exciting and interesting themes in medieval studies and medieval theology today.

The Institute for the Study of Spirituality and the Theology in a Postmodern Context Research Group invite abstracts for a conference that seeks to bring historical and contemporary theology into dialogue. In addition to commemorating Beatrice of Nazareth, the conference seeks to explore themes related to Beatrice’s text and context, but also to address theological issues that continue to resonate in contemporary debates. Both the historical- and contemporary-theological questions will be clustered around three main themes, but we strongly encourage interdisciplinary approaches that engage both historical and contemporary conversations.

Additionally, the conference will feature an exhibit displaying the Dendermonde Codex, a twelfth century MS of Hildegard of Bingen’s Symphonia. Thus we also welcome papers on Hildegard and her context.

For more information please see the Medieval Mystical Theology website.


Friday 1 June 2018, 9.00am to 18:00

Speaker: William Franke (Vanderbildt), Author of ‘On What Cannot be Said’ and ‘A Philosophy of the Unsayable’ (among others).

This conference will explore the parameters of the Unknowable and the Unutterable in early modernity. It will range across the theological, the literary and the scientific, to attend to what early modern thinkers deemed beyond what they could find words for. If this apophatic inheritance – the language of what can’t be said – was a theological-mystical mode of thinking, what happened to it in the post-reformation climate of thought? Did natural philosophy understand the knowable limits of nature in the manner of the apophatic? How did emergent science negotiate the edges of what could be thought? What uses did early modern writers find for the apophatic traditions, Dionysius, Cusa, or John Scotus Eriugena? How did early modern poetry attend to the ineffable and that which was beyond words? The conference invites papers on the unknowable, the unutterable, the unthinkable and the unsayable, all broadly considered, in the sixteenth and seventeenth century, whether English or European.

This symposium is part of the lax and diffuse Thomas Browne Seminar series


Natural Philosophy and the Unspeakable

  • Allegra Baggio Corradi (Warburg), The leksikon fantastikon of Niccolò Leonico Tomeo: The notion of halitus between natural science and divination
  • Yvonne Kiddle (University of Western Australia), Encountering the Deity through His Works: Bacon, the Apophatic and the Emergent Science.
  • Kevin Tracey (Science Museum), Point not only in respect of the Heavens above us, but of that (…) Celestial Part within us’: Negotiating Early Modern Cosmography through Books and Instruments

English Religious Unutterables

  • David Manning (Leicester), Some Remnants of Pseudo-Dionysius? Rethinking Henry Hammond’s Practical Divinity
  • Mathilde Zeeman (York), Lancelot Andrewes and the apophatic
  • Kevin Killeen (York), The Jobean Apophatic and the symphonic unknowability of the world

English Poetic Silences

  • Chance Woods (Vanderbilt University), The Apophatic Baroque: Poetry as Negative Theology in Angelus Silesius and Richard Crashaw
  • Travis Williams (University of Rhode Island), Unspeakable Creation: Writing in Paradise Lost and Early Modern Mathematics
  • Rosie Paice (Portsmouth), ‘Lik’ning spiritual to corporal forms’: translation as theme and event in Paradise Lost

Music, Allegory

  • Julie R. Klein (Villanova), How to Move beyond Language
  • Jelle Kalsbeek (Warburg), Isaac Beeckman and musical apophatic
  • Nika Kochekovskaya (Higher School of Economics, Moscow), Allegory as an expression of the unutterable in early modern literature: case of M.K. Sarbiewski (1594-1645)

Keynote speaker: William Franke (Vanderbildt), Paths Beyond Words: The Ways of Unsaying in Early Modernity

Location: The Treehouse, Berrick Saul Building, University of York

Admission: Registration details to follow.

Email: crems-enquiries@york.ac.uk


University of Oxford, Friday June 1 2018

How should we engage with omissions? Some gaps, it seems, demand to be filled, while others remain obstinately empty. Omissions can be productive, playful, and deliberate, but they can also impede and obscure. From lost or damaged Medieval manuscripts to censored modernist texts, omissions have marked and shaped our critical practices. This is true not only of textual omissions: feminist, gender, and queer theorists have addressed silences in a heterosexist canon and postcolonial theorists have raised issues of exclusion and marginalisation.

Sins of omission occur in every period and genre. From the unspoken truths in Kazuo Ishiguro’s 'The Remains of the Day' to the concealed trauma in Toni Morrison’s Beloved, narrative details are withheld from readers. The theatrical power of the empty stage is attested by the jarring disappearance of Lear’s Fool and by Godot’s failure to materialise. Poems reach us through processes of omission: Emily Dickinson’s poetry was edited posthumously, while Marianne Moore notoriously revised her own work. For Moore, ‘Omissions are not accidents.’

These questions of omission are open for debate, and we look forward to discussing them further. This conference welcomes papers crossing all periods, genres, and disciplines, on themes including but certainly not limited to:

  • Silence and empty spaces
  • Lost texts, textual gaps and lacunae
  • Palimpsests and erasure
  • Annotation and filling in the blanks
  • Editing, deletions, and revisions
  • Censorship and self-censorship
  • Memory and forgetting
  • Falsehoods and lies of omission
  • Unreliable narrators
  • Anonymity
  • Things lost in translation
  • Use of and deviation from sources
  • Works omitted from the canon
  • Citizenship and statelessness
    Marginalised voices

We welcome individual proposals for twenty-minute papers (250 words). Three-person panel proposals (500 words) are also strongly encouraged. Please send all submissions to omission.conference@ell.ox.ac.uk by Friday 16 February 2018. For more information, visit oxgradconf2018.wordpress.com or follow us at @OmissionConf18.


11 -12 June 2018, University of Oxford

Organiser: Ruggero Sciuto

Keynote Speaker: Lucien Bély (Université Paris-Sorbonne)

Gender may not always be the first topic that comes to mind when discussing international relations, but it has a heavy bearing on diplomatic issues. It surfaces regularly in the news, whether in the 2015-2016 controversy over the Vatican’s refusal to accept a homosexual ambassador from France, or in 2017 with the first group photo of NATO spouses to include a male leader’s husband. Scholars have not left this field of research unexplored, and a recent collection of essays edited by Jennifer A. Cassidy examines in depth the gender dynamics of twentieth-century diplomacy. But what was the situation like in the early modern world?

While ambassadorial positions were monopolised by men, women could and did perform diplomatic roles, both officially and unofficially. From heads of state like Elizabeth I and Catherine the Great to salon hostesses receiving diplomats from abroad, from the Paix des Dames signed by two royal women in 1529 to Lady Mary Wortley Montagu’s journey to Constantinople, women appear regularly in diplomatic contexts. Nor were gender performances always normative during this period, as shown by the eighteenth-century transgender ambassador, the Chevalier d’Eon. Literary and artistic masterpieces celebrating the signing of peace treaties, moreover, often give a prominent role to the female figure, thus questioning the assumption that the world of diplomatic negotiations was entirely male-centred. After all, certain ideas that are normally linked to masculinity, such as aggressiveness, are not easily reconciled with the practice of diplomacy. In early modern scholarship, Lucien Bély, James Daybell, Katrin Keller, Florian Kühnel, and Svante Norrhem have pioneered a gender-conscious approach to studying early modern international exchanges.

The TORCH Network on Diplomacy in the Early Modern Period proposes to continue this line of inquiry re-examining the interplay between gender and diplomacy in the early modern world at a two-day symposium in Oxford on 11-12 June 2018. We invite papers on topics including (but not limited to):

  • Methodologies for studying gender and diplomacy
  • The role of women in diplomatic ceremonial
  • Performances of masculinity within diplomatic contexts
  • Representations of gender in artistic and literary work connected with diplomacy
  • Material culture and gender in diplomatic exchange, such as gifts and ceremonial objects
  • Ambassadorial family networks and correspondences
  • Female-dominated areas (e.g. salons, harems, etc.) as spaces of diplomacy
  • Differences/similarities between the approaches of male/female sovereigns to foreign affairs
  • The body of the queen/king and its diplomatic value

Presentations on any geographical area are most welcome. Abstracts of no more than 250 words should be sent to earlymoderndiplomacy@torch.ox.ac.uk by 1 April 2018. Successful applicants will be notified by 20 April 2018.

A small registration fee (standard = £25; students = £10) will be charged to help towards the costs of lunch and refreshments. Travel expenses will not be reimbursed.

Submission date for papers: 1 April 2018.


A conference at The Warburg Institute, London, 14-15 June 2018

Organised by Dr Rembrandt Duits

The art history of the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance has generally been written as a story of elites: bankers, noblemen, kings, cardinals, and popes and their artistic interests and commissions. Recent decades have seen attempts to recast the story in terms of material culture and include a wider range of objects than are discussed in the traditional surveys of painting, sculpture and architecture, but the focus has not fundamentally shifted away from the upper strata of society. One otherwise excellent publication following this new approach even states confidently that ‘there was no such thing as poor man’s art in the Renaissance.’

There are, however, countless modest images, decorated objects and buildings across Europe that belie this notion, from lead and tin pilgrims’ badges in the Museum of London to frescoed churches commissioned by village communities during the Venetian period on Crete. These works of art were made for the more than 95% of the population who were economically less privileged: peasants, unskilled and skilled workers in the building and manufacturing industries, small-time artisans. They are works that tend not to enter the major art museums and exhibitions of the western world, or feature prominently in tourist guide books; they can be found in museums of urban history and archaeology and the closest they come to mingling with ‘real’ art is in shows with an anthropological approach, such as ‘the art of devotion.’ If they are discussed in artistic terms at all, these are often negative: ‘coarse’; ‘crude’; ‘primitive’; or ‘provincial’. There is also a common assumption that such objects did not have artistic traditions of their own but were always derived from the shining examples made by famous artists for the rich.

This conference aims to challenge these perceptions. For the first time, ‘the art of the poor’ will be given centre stage. Through a variety of case studies, objects, their functions and manufacturing traditions will be re-evaluated and established aesthetic judgements and tacit assumptions in scholarship re-examined. The conference will seek to give impetus to a new field combining the expertise of urban archaeologists, historians, historical anthropologists, and art historians. This field, different from general studies of material culture in that its principal object is ‘art’, can help us re-assess the very concept of ‘art’ and its function in society, neither of which can be understood properly without taking into account the broadest range of artistic activity. Topics for papers may include, but are not limited to:

  • Art forms made for people with lower incomes, e.g. decorations of village and small parish churches, pilgrims’ souvenirs, woodcuts, decorated ceramics, drinking glasses, textiles, costume, modest paintings and sculptures
  • The iconography of images for the poor
  • The ‘art market’ of the poor, including manufacturing traditions, vending of artefacts, (collective) commissions, second-hand retail
  • Relevant aspects of social history, eg income levels and purchasing power, records of transactions or possessions, anecdotal evidence from literary sources, visual evidence from paintings, manuscript illuminations and other images
  • Relations between the art of the poor and more upmarket artistic manufacture
  • The historiography (or lack of it) of the art of the poor
  • Relevant finds in urban archaeology, relevant aspects of museum collections

Papers by early career scholars are particularly welcome. The aim is for the conference proceedings to be published. Papers are restricted to 25 mins. Please send a short abstract and a brief CV to rembrandt.duits@sas.ac.uk by 28 July, 2017.


Queen’s University Belfast, 14-17 June 2018 (BSA2018@qub.ac.uk)

Following on from the 2016 celebrations, the 2018 BSA conference offers an opportunity for academics, practitioners enthusiasts and teachers (primary, secondary and sixth- form teachers and college lecturers) to reflect upon Shakespeare Studies today. What does Shakespeare Studies mean in the here-and-now? What are the current and anticipated directions in such diverse fields of enquiry as Shakespeare and pedagogy, Shakespeare and race, Shakespeare and the body, Shakespeare and childhood, Shakespeare and religion, Shakespeare and economics, Shakespeare and the law, Shakespeare and emotion, Shakespeare and politics, Shakespeare and war and Shakespeare and the environment? What is Shakespeare’s place inside the curriculum and inside debates around theory, queer studies and feminism? Where are we in terms of editing and materiality, and where does Shakespeare sit alongside his contemporaries, male and female? How does theatre practice, performance history, adaptation, cinema and citation figure in ever evolving Shakespeare Studies? In particular, this conference is keen to explore the challenges facing Shakespeare Studies today and to reflect on newer emergent approaches. Reflections on past practices and their reinventions for the future are also warmly welcomed.

Plenary Speakers include: Prof. Pascale Aebischer (University of Exeter), Prof. Clara Calvo (University of Murcia), Prof. Richard Dutton (Queen’s University Belfast), Prof. Courtney Lehmann (University of the Pacific) and Prof. Ayanna Thompson (George Washington University).

UK Premieres include: Veeram (dir. Jayaraj, 2016), a South Indian film adaptation of Macbeth, and Hermia and Helena (dir. Matías Piñeiro, 2016), an Argentine adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. BSA 2018 also includes: Q+As with theatre director Andrea Montgomery (The Belfast Tempest, 2016) and film directors Jayaraj and Matías Piñeiro.

There are four ways to participate in BSA 2018:

1. Submit an abstract for a 20-minute paper. Abstracts (100 words) and a short biography to be submitted by 1 November 2017 to BSA2018@qub.ac.uk

2. Submit a proposal for a panel session consisting of three 20-minute papers. Abstracts for all three papers (100 words each), a rationale for the panel (100 words) and short speaker biographies to be submitted by 1 November 2017 to BSA2018@qub.ac.uk

3. Submit a proposal for a performance / practice or education workshop or a teachers’ INSET session. For a workshop, submit a summary proposal outlining aims and activities and a biographical statement. For an INSET session (either a one-hour event or a twenty-minute slot), submit a summary proposal and biographical statement. All proposals to be submitted by 1 November 2017 to BSA2018@qub.ac.uk

4. Submit an abstract to join a seminar. The seminar format involves circulating a short paper in advance of the conference and then meeting to discuss all of the papers in Belfast. Abstracts (100 words), a short biography and a statement of your seminar of preference to be submitted by 1 November 2017 to BSA2018@qub.ac.uk. Seminars include:

  • ‘Digital Shakespeare: Histories/Resources/Methods’ led by Dr Stephen O’Neill (Maynooth University)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Act/Scene Division’ led by Dr Mark Hutchings (University of Reading)
  • ‘Shakespeare and the Book Today’ led by Professor Emma Smith (Hertford College, Oxford)
  • ‘Shakespeare and his Contemporaries’ led by Dr Lucy Munro (King’s College, London)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Early Modern Playing Spaces’ led by Professor Richard Dutton (Queen’s University Belfast)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Europe’ led by Professor Andrew Hiscock (Bangor University) and Professor Natalie Vienne-Guerrin (University of Montpellier III-Paul Valéry)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Film’ led by Dr Romano Mullin and Professor Mark Thornton Burnett (Queen’s University Belfast)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Marx’ led by Dr Matt Williamson (Queen’s University Belfast)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Morality’ led by Dr Neema Parvini (University of Surrey)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Pedagogy’ led by Dr Linzy Brady (University of Sydney) and Dr Kate Flaherty (Australian National University)
  • ‘Shakespeare, Performance and the 21st Century’ led by Dr Erin Sullivan (Shakespeare Institute, the University of Birmingham)
  • ‘Shakespeare and Religion’ led by Dr Adrian Streete (University of Glasgow)
  • ‘Women, Shakespeare and Performance’, led by Professor Liz Schafer (Royal Holloway, University of London)

Belfast is a popular destination and a wonderful city to visit. Conference-linked events will include Titanic Belfast. Optional tours will include the Giant’s Causeway and the locations used in the HBO series, Game of Thrones, which is filmed in Northern Ireland. Belfast is well-connected via two airports - Belfast International Airport and George Best Airport, Belfast. Belfast is also easily accessible by train, car or bus via Dublin International Airport. Discounted rates will be available at local hotels. A number of Graduate / Practitioner / Teacher Bursaries will be available to cover the conference fee. When you submit your abstract / proposal, please indicate if you would like to apply for one of these and if you would like to attend all of the conference or Saturday only.


June 18-20 2018, Saint Louis University, Saint Louis, Missouri.

The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies (June 18-20, 2018) is a convenient summer venue for scholars from around the world to present papers, organize sessions, participate in roundtables, and engage in interdisciplinary discussion. The goal of the Symposium is to promote serious scholarly investigation into all topics and in all disciplines of medieval and early modern studies.

The plenary speakers for this year will be Geoffrey Parker of The Ohio State University and Carole Hillenbrand of the University of St Andrews.

The Symposium is held annually on the beautiful midtown campus of Saint Louis University. On-campus housing options include affordable, air-conditioned apartments as well as a luxurious boutique hotel. Inexpensive meal plans are available, and there is also a wealth of restaurants, bars, and cultural venues within easy walking distance of campus.

While attending the Symposium participants are free to use the Vatican Film Library, the Rare Book and Manuscripts Collection, and the general collection at Saint Louis University’s Pius XII Memorial Library.

The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies invites proposals for papers, complete sessions, and roundtables. Any topics regarding the scholarly investigation of the medieval and early modern world are welcome. Papers are normally twenty minutes each and sessions are scheduled for ninety minutes. Scholarly organizations are especially encouraged to sponsor proposals for complete sessions.

The deadline for all submissions is December 31. Decisions will be made in January and the final program will be published in February.

For more information or to submit your proposal online go to the symposium website.


National University of Ireland, Galway, 21-22 June 2018

Glossing, the practice of annotating manuscripts between the lines and/or in the margins, was a widespread cultural practice wherever books were being read, studied and taught. As an indication of this, the Network for the Study of Glossing currently has 75 members with research interests in glossed manuscripts written in Arabic, Breton, Chinese, German, Greek, Egyptian, English, French, Hebrew, Hittite, Irish, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Sanskrit, Turkish, and Welsh.

This two-day conference aims to bring together specialists from a variety of fields to discuss aspects of glossing—in all its forms—from a comparative perspective. A particular focus will be on how glosses engage with and reflect the dynamics of contemporary cultural change, rather than acting merely as passive repositories of inherited tradition. Specific aspects of glossing could include any of the following:

1) Glossing as a revealer of reading practices: eg considering the relationship between Classical/cosmopolitan written languages and spoken vernaculars; or different approaches to reading/performing sacred and secular texts.

2) Glossing as a method of interpretation: both linguistic (translation) and cultural (eg mediating remote cultures and ideas).

3) Glossing as an instrument of textual authority: mandating how texts should be read and understood; creating and re-shaping canons.

4) Glossing as a vehicle for education: organisation of knowledge; delivery of a particular curriculum.

5) Glossing as an intellectual effort: scholarship for its own sake; the creation of new knowledge.

Papers should last 20 minutes, allowing 10 minutes for discussion.
(Direct comparison between traditions is not expected. This will be facilitated during the event.)

This event follows on from another held at the University of Frankfurt on 2–3 December 2016. We aim to publish a selection of papers from both conferences together in a single volume.

Please send a title and abstract (300 words max) to Pádraic Moran
(padraic.moran@nuigalway.ie) by 23 February 2018.

Some limited financial assistance will be available.


7th Biennial Conference of the Aphra Behn Europe Society, University College, Dublin, 27-29 June 2018.

The Aphra Behn Europe Society invites submissions of papers (20 minutes) and round tables (60 minutes) for its biennial conference.  This conference encourages interdisciplinary approaches to the fields of early women’s writing, historiography, textual studies and feminist methodologies

Topics might include, but are not limited to:

  • establishing a canon
  • editing early women’s writing
  • re-examining traditional period boundaries
  • tracing and mapping literary networks
  • re-evaluations of genre(s)
  • uses for new and established digital resources
  • challenging critical binaries, eg print vs manuscript and public vs private
  • early-modern women’s reading

Plenary speaker: Professor Robert D. Hume, University of Pennsylvania

Abstracts of approximately 250 words should be sent to aphrabehn2018@gmail.com by 5 February 2018.


Seventh International Conference on Popular Romance Studies, Sydney, Australia, 27-29 June 2018

Keynote speakers

  • Lisa Fletcher, University of Tasmania
  • Beth Driscoll, University of Melbourne
  • Kim Wilkins, University of Queensland

Space, place, and romantic love are intimately entwined. Popular culture depicts particular locations and environments as “romantic”; romantic fantasies can be “escapist” or involve the “boy/girl/beloved next door”; and romantic relationships play out in a complex mix of physical and virtual settings. The romance industry may be globalized, but popular romance culture is always situated: produced and circulated in distinctive localities and spaces, online and offline. Love plays out in real-world contexts of migration and dislocation; love figures in representations of assimilation and cultural resistance; in different times and places, radically disparate political movements - revolutionary, reactionary, and everything in between - have all deployed the rhetoric and imagery of love.

For its seventh international conference on Popular Romance Studies, the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance calls for papers on romantic love and popular culture, now and in the past, from anywhere in the world. We are particularly interested, this year, on papers that address the relationship between love and locality in popular culture: not just in fictional modes (novels, films, TV shows, comics, song lyrics, fan fiction, etc.), but also in didactic genres (advice columns, dating manuals, journalism), in advertising, and in both digital and material culture (wedding dresses, courtship rituals, etc.).

The conference will be held at Macquarie University’s city campus, 123 Pit Street, Sydney. The venue is in the heart of Sydney’s CBD shopping and dining precinct, a 15-minute walk away from the Sydney Opera House, Harbour Bridge, and historic Rocks area. Travel support for graduate students, independent scholars, and nontenured faculty may be applied for, if your proposal is accepted.

Topics of interest might include:

  • Geographies of love and sexuality
  • Love’s Settings: eg the imagined Outback of Rural Romances; the Scottish Highlands; romantic cities; small-town and island romances; the communal space of “Romancelandia”
  • Romantic Chronotopes: times and places when love is imagined to be “truer” or “deeper” than the here-and-now (eg Regency or Victorian England; medieval Provence; Tang Dynasty China; the Joseon settings of Korean TV-drama, etc.)
  • Honeymoon travel (past and present) and romantic tourism, including fan pilgrimages for romantic texts and films, destination weddings, and the like
  • Locality and LGBTQIA romance culture
  • Courtship in public and semi-private spaces: eg paying visits, dating, office romance, romance and car culture
  • Love’s Architectures: Hotels, Fantasy Suites, Clubs and Restaurants, Domestic Spaces (kitchens, bedrooms, Red Rooms of Pain, etc.)
  • Local, National, and Transnational Book Industries
  • Local Romance Writer Groups, Reader Groups, or Media Fan Groups / Events
    Romance and the (Local) Library or Bookshop
  • Local Love on Television (eg Farmer Wants a Wife) and online (Tinder, etc.)
  • “Escapist” reading and the places / practices of romance consumption
  • Place and Race in Popular Romance
  • The “Phone-World” and other Virtual Spaces for Love
  • Off the Map: Emerging and Under-Studied Settings and Romance Cultures
    • Material locations and imaginary spaces for love, and the combination of the two in Edward Soja’s concept of “thirdspace”
    • Migration and love: migration for love, love hampered by distance, love in migrant and refugee communities
    • Non-geographic love (eg love experienced entirely online) and the intersections of technology with long-distance love, now and in the past
    • Lieux de memoire in the context of romantic love (as opposed to national identity)
    • Love and nationalism, love and regionalism, love and (local) political struggle

All theoretical and empirical approaches are welcome, including discussions of pedagogy.

Submit 250-300 word proposals for individual papers, full panels, roundtables, interviews, or innovative presentations to conferences@iaspr.org by 15 September, 2017. All proposals will be peer reviewed.


We are pleased to announce that the 9th International Conference on Historical Lexicology an Lexicography will be held in Santa Margherita Ligure on June 20-22, 2018 and will be hosted by the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures of the University of Genova.

ICHLL is a biennial conference providing scholars from different institutions an opportunity to gather and share their research on the history of dictionaries, the making of historical dictionaries, as well as on historical lexicology. Previous conferences have been held in Leicester, UK (2002), Gargnano del Garda, Italy (2004), Leiden, The Netherlands (2006), Edmonton, Canada (2008), Oxford, UK (2010), Jena, Germany (2012), Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain (2014), Bloomington, USA (2016).

For more information on the International Society on Historical Lexicology and Lexicography (ISHLL) and past conferences see the ISHLL website.

We welcome proposals for both oral presentations and posters on the thematic strand “From glosses to dictionaries”, as well as on any topic of historical lexicology and lexicography.

Oral presentations will be 20 minutes in length followed by a 10-minute discussion. Posters will be presented in a dedicated session. Papers can be delivered in either English or Italian.

Abstracts (approx. 250-300 words in length) should be submitted electronically as an e-mail attachment to ichll2018@gmail.com and should contain no self-identification. The accompanying e-mail should include the author’s name and institutional affiliation, the title of the paper and a statement as to whether the proposal is intended for oral presentation or for a poster.

The deadline for the submission of abstracts is December, 31st 2017. Notification of acceptance will be sent out by February, 15th 2018.


Conference Website

The twenty-fourth International Medieval Congress will take place in Leeds from 2-5 July 2018.


Leeds IMC, 2-5 July 2018. Session sponsored by Huygens ING, De Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen.

Medieval manuscripts are replete with mnemonic devices. Chronologies, scientific speculations, schoolroom commonplaces from grammatical and rhetorical books, and even material for prayers and sermons were visually and verbally arranged to facilitate ease of recollection. Historians have drawn attention to the range of devices used by medieval scholars, but have tended to treat graphical and discursive models separately. These sessions aim to bridge the divide, reconnecting the two fields of mnemonics in order to better understand how form related to function. As ancient techniques were inventively reinterpreted under the influence of new or rediscovered texts, varied practices of memorization made fresh contributions to medieval intellectual life.

We invite 20-minute papers for two sessions on the production or use of mnemonic devices – verbal, visual, or both – in any medieval culture.

Please contact Seb Falk (sldf2@cam.ac.uk) with your proposed title and a brief summary of your paper.

Deadline: 15 September.

Session organisers:
Seb Falk, University of Cambridge
Amanda Gerber, UCLA
Irene O’Daly, Huygens ING


International Medieval Congress, Leeds 2-5 July 2018. Submission deadline 20 September 2017.

Organisers: Naïs Virenque, Centre d’Études Supérieures de la Renaissance, Université François Rabelais, Tours Pippa Salonius, School of Philosophical, Historical and International Studies, Monash University, Melbourne

Call for Papers: Memories of our ancestors mould us. Key to determining our identities and shaping our sense of self, they help us construct our own microcosms of belonging. Blood ties bind us together building communities. These memories give us a sense of belonging, they are inclusive and as social animals, we gain strength from them. As parts of a historical and genealogical whole, in Medieval Christian thought we all stem from the same seed, that of Adam.

We seek papers that explore the use of arboreal imagery to convey concepts of lineage, genealogy and descent. Tree diagrams were used in the Middle Ages to organise ethics and knowledge. They express hierarchy and classify categories and sub-categories visually. They rendered difficult intellectual concepts accessible to the wider audience and helped scholars put complex issues in order. In both cases, trees were performative and carried their own significance. With their roots deep in the earth and their branches reaching towards the heavens, trees span the distance between the earthly realm and the divine. As mnemonic devices, their branching nature hints at the possibility of infinite multiplication and growth, urging viewers to engage with the data they contain. In the medieval West a renewed interest in mnemotechnic treatises and artefacts, together with a growing tendency for listing processes, increased the use of arboreal imagery in the twelfth century. From the thirteenth century, the use of tree structures together with the translation and dissemination of treatises on the art of memory and the development of vast encyclopaedic projects, constituted an important part of monastic, mendicant and university education. By the fifteenth century the tree had become the most common method for mapping knowledge in medieval Europe.

Tree diagrams are not static in time, but reach across it. Not only do they present knowledge, they encourage its future development and generation. Neither were they geographically confined. Trees flourished in the imaginary of many cultures as memory stimulators and storage. The world trees in pre-Hispanic Mesoamerica, Yggdrasil in Norse mythology, Māori purakau (stemming from rakau, the root word for tree), tales told for didactic purposes, represent but a few examples. We seek to identify and explore both the similarities and differences in this nexus between trees, lineage and memory across cultures. In the interest of establishing an interdisciplinary global platform, we encourage proposals that examine arboreal frameworks of lineage and memory across medieval cultures, throughout Christendom and beyond, to include the indigenous cultures of America, Asia and the Pacific. ‘Arboreal’ and ‘imagery’ are used in the broadest sense of the terms in order to encourage interdisciplinary enquiry into both visual motifs and arboreal images conjured up by words, movement and/or sound.

Possible topics and perspectives include but are not limited to:

  • Metaphors of knowledge: Seeds, trees and ideas
  • Links between human ancestry and botany: Arbor consanguinitatis, Arbor affinitatis?
  • Arboreal imagery as a pedagogical device
  • Songlines: Arboreal frameworks for memory and mapping
  • Medieval Music and the Tree
  • Sacred Trees and Human History
  • The transitory nature of death in the Middle Ages: The tree as intermediary between the world of the living and that of the dead
  • Trees in Juridical Thought: Authority, Jurisdiction, Prohibition
  • Arboreal imagery in architecture: columns and pilasters, decoration and structure
  • Trees and the art of memory. Tree diagrams
  • Trees and world order
  • Materiality: The meaning of wood, bark and foliage in (ceremonial) dress and gifts
  • The Tree at the centre
  • The Tree of Life (‘Gunungan’ in Javanese shadow puppet plays, in the Jewish/Christian Tradition, etc.)
  • Family Trees

Submission Guidelines: Please note that individual contributors must send their abstracts to us, as we have to submit them together as a session. (Do not submit your abstracts directly to the Leeds IMC). We aim to present multiple sessions at Leeds so that we might then consider them for publication.

1. Submission deadline: 20 September 2017

2. Abstracts must be circa 100 words

3. A title must be provided

4. Please specify your surname, your forename(s), your academic title and affiliation

5. Please specify your full address (including post code, city and country), telephone and email

6. All IMC sessions come with a PC/laptop, data projector (‘beamer’), and internet access as standard. Please list any additional equipment required for your presentation

7. Please submit a brief author biography of around 100 words with your abstract to Pippa Salonius, p.salonius@gmail.com and/or Naïs Virenque, nais.virenque@univtours. fr NB. Only one abstract per conference by author or co-author may be submitted


Leeds International Medieval Congress, 2-5 July 2018

In line with the IMC focus of Memory for 2018, which has also been named as the European Year of Cultural Heritage, the newly-launched MARTRAE network is organizing sessions on ‘Commemorating Saints and Martyrs in Medieval Europe’. The focus of these sessions is to explore the multifaceted ways in which saints and martyrs are remembered and how forms of commemoration functioned in creating, perpetuating or transforming collective cultural heritage. Papers may focus on tangible as well as intangible forms of commemoration, including (but not limited to): devotional and liturgical practices; material aspects of commemoration in the form of relics, devotional objects and manuscripts; the conceptualisation of martyrdom and sainthood; the legacy and function of medieval forms of commemoration in the modern world; harmony and disharmony in remembering; landscapes as vehicles or anchors for commemoration; and the role of martyrdom in shaping or manipulating identities.

Please send abstracts of ca. 250 words to Nicole Volmering at volmern@tcd.ie or Ann Buckley at buckleai@tcd.ie by September 20.


Leeds International Medieval Congress, 2-5 July 2018.

From ecocriticism to the global Middle Ages, queer theory to the medical humanities, contemporary fields of scholarly interest provide a plethora of ways through which to reinterpret women in medieval romance literature. With this series of panel sessions proposed for Leeds International Medieval Congress, we seek to examine women in romance afresh, considering the new themes and issues brought into view by contemporary methodologies.

The panel title is deliberately broad and we are open to a variety of approaches. Themes you may wish to consider include, but are not limited to:

  • Non-white and/or non-Christian women’s roles in romance
  • Ecocritical and ecofeminist approaches to women in romance
  • Queer approaches to women in romance
  • Virginity, sex, and sexuality
  • Same-sex desire
  • Women and healing
  • Women and trauma
  • Sexual violence and rape in romance literature
  • Women’s political roles in medieval romance
  • Women and disability
  • Motherhood and family relations
  • Remembering and/or forgetting women in romance literature
  • Women’s memories in romance literature
  • Minor and/or non-aristocratic women in romance
  • Groups of women in medieval romance
  • Women as patrons and readers of romance
  • The material culture and objects of women in romance
  • Women in early modern romance
  • Medieval romance and medievalis

We particularly welcome papers given by scholars from under-represented backgrounds, as well as papers by PhD students and early career researchers. Papers taking a feminist approach, and those which interrogate questions of race and diversity, are particularly sought.

Papers should be 15-20 minutes long. Please send abstracts of 100 words, along with a short biography, to hannah.e.piercy@durham.ac.uk by Friday 8 September 2017. Any queries are also welcome, please send these to the same address.

We look forward to hearing from you!


Leeds International Medieval Congress, 2-5 July 2018. Sponsor: MEARCSTAPA

MEARCSTAPA seeks papers to compose a session of 3 or 4 papers to the 2018 International Medieval Congress at Leeds. The Congress theme is “Memory.” Our hope is that this session will run as a twin-session to our proposed panel for Kalamazoo 2018 on Monstrous Medievalisms.

The medieval period continues to be misidentified both as a primitive and savage ‘dark ages’ and as an idealized utopian golden age of racial and religious homogeny. In both cases, aspects of medieval culture - stories, motifs, and themes - are appropriated and reimagined (that is, remembered and reconstructed) in ways that celebrate and promote the othering of certain racial and ethnic groups or cultures. Medievalists should be made uncomfortable by the realization that we share some interests with white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and other groups dedicated to the oppression, segregation, and even elimination of racial and ethnic groups or cultures. Medievalists should feel even more uncomfortable when this othering - intentional or otherwise - becomes common in the presentation of the Middle Ages in various popular cultural media.

These medievalisms use the Middle Ages - our Middle Ages - to advance their racist agendas, which have frequently resulted in malicious acts against individuals and groups. In short, the Middle Ages are often put to monstrous work in modern popular thought and culture, frequently used by one community to attack another. The Middle Ages thus become othered and estranged from the scholars who study and teach from positions of acceptance and inclusion. These monstrous medievalisms use the period to foster some of the most pernicious ideologies of the present day and distort our understanding of the past. We ask, whose Middle Ages are they? And in so doing, we seek to confront these monstrous medievalisms, to unravel and make sense of them in order to dismantle the negative work they do.

Papers for this panel might address topics such as:

  • Appropriations of the medieval image and narrative in Nazi propaganda
  • Contemporary White Pride/White Nationalist appropriations of the medieval symbols and signs (tattoos, banners, album covers, banners)
  • Racist responses to inclusion in “Medieval” film
  • The medieval fantasies of white identity in the Anglo-Saxon enthusiasm of the founding fathers
  • Racialized Monsters in the contemporary medieval fantasy
  • Race War as trope in Ancient and Medieval period films, video games, and/or books
  • “Unintentional” rehearsals of racist ideologies in popular media

We invite papers from all disciplines and national traditions. Additionally, MEARCSTAPA will provide an award of $500 to the best graduate student submission to this or any of its sessions to help offset the costs of travel and lodging for the IMC.

Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words together with a brief bio to session organizer Renée Ward (rward@lincoln.ac.uk) by 10 September 2017. Please include your name, title, and affiliation on the abstract itself. All abstracts will be vetted by the MEARCSTAPA board and the full session will be submitted to the Congress mid-September 2017.


The Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture seeks proposals for a Mary Jaharis Center sponsored session at the 25th International Medieval Congress, University of Leeds, July 2–5 2018. We invite session proposals on any topic relevant to Byzantine studies.

The thematic strand for the 2018 IMC is “Memory.” See the IMC Call for Papers for additional information about the theme and suggested areas of discussion.

Session proposals should be submitted through the Mary Jaharis Center website. The deadline for submission is September 1, 2017. Proposals should include:

  • Title
  • 100-word session abstract
  • Session moderator and academic affiliation
  • Information about the three papers to be presented in the session. For each paper: name of presenter and academic affiliation, proposed paper title, and 100-word abstract
  • CV

Successful applicants will be notified by mid-September if their proposal has been selected for submission to the International Medieval Congress. The Mary Jaharis Center will submit the session proposal to the International Medieval Congress and will keep the potential organizer informed about the status of the proposal.

If the proposed session is approved, the Mary Jaharis Center will reimburse session participants (presenters and moderator) up to $600 maximum for European residents and up to $1200 maximum for those coming from outside Europe. Funding is through reimbursement only; advance funding cannot be provided. Eligible expenses include conference registration, transportation, and food and lodging. Receipts are required for reimbursement.

The session organizer may act as the moderator or present a paper. Participants may only present papers in one session.

Please contact Brandie Ratliff (mjcbac@hchc.edumjcbac@hchc.edu), Director, Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture with any questions.


International Medieval Congress 2018 session.

Cerae is sourcing submissions to participate in a panel focused on ‘Memories of Empire’ for the IMC Conference at the University of Leeds (2-5 July 2018). The focus of our panel is on the ways in which individuals or collectives used, or were influenced by, recollections and remnants of the Roman Empire.

Medieval ideas about education and civic duty were heavily influenced by Roman authors, for example, while Roman ruins were continuously used in Medieval buildings. Medieval theologians constantly grappled with the legacy of their ancient pagan forebears, while poets and playwrights sought to establish authority and prestige by placing themselves in the classical tradition through emulation and imitation. In Medieval memories and imaginations, the Roman Empire served as not only a past point of reference, but as an aspirational destination. In our panel, we would like to explore the relationship between memory, imagination and destiny. Submissions might focus on – but are not limited to:

  • studies in the visual, literary and material culture of the Carolingian empire
  • the birth of Renaissance humanism with its focus on classical notions of civic duty
  • religious appropriations of the imperial claim to political supremacy
  • medieval romance and epic as genres innovating on classical styles and themes
  • the imperialist legacy in early colonial propaganda

Cerae is aiming to gather together panellists with varied disciplinary approaches, and submissions from scholars working in art history, literature, politics, intellectual history, social studies and beyond are encouraged.

Submissions by participants willing to write up their paper as an article for review and publication in 2018 as part of Cerae Volume 5 (of the same theme) will be prioritised. We can offer bursaries of $100 towards travel costs for graduates and ECRs travelling from Australia and New Zealand.

Please send a 250-300 word abstract along with a brief biography/publication list to  ceraejournal@gmail.com by 31 August 2017.


Historians make choices about the scale of their inquiry. They set parameters for their projects – temporal, geographical, social, archival – which shape their research strategies, their potential audiences, and their interpretations and arguments. Do you write history on a grand or intimate scale? Or both? We welcome paper and panel proposals on any geographical area, time period, or field of history, especially those relating to the theme of scale.

The Australian Historical Association 2018 Conference will be held Monday 2-Friday 6 July 2018 at The Australian National University, Canberra.

The full call for papers and a pdf file of it for print purposes is available on the conference website.

CFP deadline: Wednesday 28 February 2018.


Religious History Association, Canberra, 3 July 2018 (in association with the Australian Historical Association Conference 2-6 July 2018)

The Religious History Association invites presentations that explore the material and sensory dimensions of the communication of belief.

Our knowledge of devotional practices and rituals, and of beliefs and attitudes, can be enriched by exploring the material and sensory heritage through which religions are interpreted, expressed and understood. We are especially interested in how the material aspects of religion, such as music, movement, architecture, objects, foodways, and clothing, as well as sensory responses to these material forms, express and translate religious commitment.

We welcome papers that look particularly at how material and sensory practices shape and express the dynamics of religious belief across geographical areas, eras of history or between distinct communities; that explore cross-cultural and interfaith exchanges, including the re-interpretation of religious texts, art or artefact in missionary encounters; and in diverse social and cultural contexts. Papers may also examine how objects or devotional practices are the products of encounter between diverse religious cultures and exchanges.

Proposals for 20 minute individual papers, panels (3 x 15 minute papers with chair and respondent), and roundtables (90 minute conversation by several scholars on an issue, book or object) are welcome.

Proposals should be submitted through the Australian Historical Association conference site: aha2018.anu.edu.au, indicating RHA Stream.

CFP Deadline: 28 February 2018 Participants will be invited to submit papers to the Journal of Religious History.


Australian National University 4-7 July 2018

George Rudé Seminar in French History and Civilisation web page.


(Version française ci-dessous)

We are pleased to announce the 21st George Rudé Seminar in French History and Civilisation, which will be hosted by The Australian National University in Canberra from 4 to 7 July 2018.

The George Rudé Seminar in French History and Civilisation is the premier conference in French historical and cultural studies in the southern hemisphere. This biennial event recognises the contribution of George Rudé to the study of French history and culture in Australasia and internationally. Each conference produces a peer-reviewed collection in the journal French History and Civilisation, published through H-France.

The Rudé Seminar welcomes twenty-minute papers, in English or in French, on all aspects of French and Francophone history, from the Middle Ages to the present, for inclusion in the general program. Proposals for both individual papers and group panels will be accepted.

As the capital city of Australia, Canberra is home to many cultural and research institutions. The region is also known for its vineyards, bushwalking, and close proximity to the ski resorts of the Australian alps.

Confirmed keynote speakers for the 21st George Rudé Seminar include:

Alice Conklin (Professor of History, Ohio State University), author of In the Museum of Man: Race, Anthropology and Empire in France, 1850-1950 (Cornell, 2013) and A Mission to Civilize: The Republican Idea of Empire in France and West Africa, 1895-1930 (Stanford University Press, 1997).

Mary D. Lewis (Robert Walton Goelet Professor of French History at Harvard University), author of Divided Rule: Sovereignty and Empire in French Tunisia, 1881-1938 (University of California Press, 2013) and The Boundaries of the Republic: Migrant Rights and the Limits of Universalism in France (Stanford University Press, 2007).

Antoine Lilti (Director of Studies, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales), author of The Invention of Celebrity: 1750-1850 (Polity Press, 2017) and The World of the Salons: Sociability and Worldliness in Eighteenth-century Paris (Oxford University Press, 2015).

Pierre Serna (Director of the Institut d’Histoire de la Révolution Française, Professeur d’histoire de la Révolution française et de l’Empire à l’Université de Paris 1 Panthéon- Sorbonne), author of La Révolution des animaux 1760-1820 (Fayard, 2016) and La République des Girouettes - 1795-1815 et au delà. Une anomalie politique: la France de l’extrême centre (Champ Vallon, 2005).

Abstracts of up to 300 words per presenter should be sent to GeorgeRudeSeminar2018@anu.edu.au together with a 100-word profile of each speaker giving name, professional title and affiliation, by Friday 1 December 2017. General inquiries can be made to the same address.


2018 Literary Studies Convention, July 4-7 2018, Australian National University, Canberra

The Australian National University (ANU) is proud to host the 2018 Literary Studies Convention. The convention will be held on the ANU campus in Canberra between Wednesday, July 4 and Saturday, July 7.

An interface describes a surface or plane that lies between or joins two points in space, but it also refers to ‘a means or place of interaction between two systems’ and ‘an apparatus designed to connect two scientific instruments so that they can be operated jointly’ (OED).

This convention will bring together scholars working across the broad field of literary studies to discuss the literary as an interface between different forms of knowledge and processes of knowledge formation, looking at questions of how and through what means the literary is communicated, represented, negotiated, and remade. By placing the concept of the literary centre-stage while at the same time interrogating its role as an interface, we wish to open up for discussion questions about the role, dynamism, and value of the literary in a time of institutional change and ongoing disciplinary formation. We would also like to debate the role of the literary text – and literary studies as a discipline – as a site of encounter between diverse languages and potentially alien modes of reading and writing.

Invoking the possibility of melding, soldering, and/or merging different elements, the literary interface suggests the resilience as well as the suppleness of disciplinary boundaries. It conjures the possibility of new meeting points; zones of contact and interaction but also sites of contention and disruption that might challenge received platitudes yet help us to bring to the surface new meanings.

Confirmed keynotes include Johanna Drucker, Lauren Goodlad and Brigitta Olubas.

We invite papers and panel proposals, including but not limited to the following topics:

  • Mediation, remediation, and transmediation
  • Literary Formalism - its past, present and/or future
  • Multimedia forms as interfaces
  • The relationship between forms, networks, and hierarchies
  • Encounters between readers and modes of reading
  • Translation
  • The relationship between literary studies and other disciplines, e.g., environmental studies, maths, ethnography, science
  • The interface between academic and public critical cultures
  • Spaces of reading (online and otherwise)
  • The negotiation of literary value
  • The classroom as literary interface
  • Literary objects as interfaces: circulation, reception, paratexts
  • The stage and other spaces of performance as interface between temporalities, bodies, performers, writers and audiences
  • Cultural interfaces
  • Languages of colonialists/postcoloniality
  • Transnationalism and minor transnationalism

Jointly held by the Association for the Study of Australian Literature, the Australasian Association for Literature, the Australasian Universities Languages and Literature Association, and the Australian University Heads of English.

Follow us on Twitter @LitInterface and Facebook @Literaryinterface2018

Convention Registration

For further information please contact the Conference Convenor, Dr Julieanne Lamond:
Email: julieanne.lamond@anu.edu.au
Phone: +61 2 6125 4786

ANU School of Literature, Languages and Linguistics
A.D. Hope Building 14
The Australian National University
Canberra, ACT 2601, Australia


University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, 5–7 July 2018

We are pleased to announce the Call for Papers for the Sixteenth International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities, held 5–7 July 2018 at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA.

First held at the University of the Aegean on the island of Rhodes in Greece in 2003, the conference has moved its location each year to different countries and continents, each offering its own perspectives on the human condition and the current state of studies of the human. This research network is brought together by a shared commitment to the humanities and a concern for their future.

We invite proposals for paper presentations, workshops/interactive sessions, posters/exhibits, colloquia, virtual posters, or virtual lightning talks. The conference features research addressing the annual themes.

  1. Theme 1: Critical Cultural Studies
  2. Theme 2: Communications and Linguistics Studies
  3. Theme 3: Literary Humanities
  4. Theme 4: Civic, Political, and Community Studies
  5. Theme 5: Humanities Education

Proposal submission deadline: 30 June 2017.

For more information regarding the conference, please visit the conference website.


University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA, 7 July 2018

Founded in 2003, the International Conference on Books, Publishing & Libraries brings together scholars and practitioners around a common shared interest in exploring the histories, traditions, and futures of books, publishing, and libraries.

We invite proposals for paper presentations, workshops/interactive sessions, posters/exhibits, and colloquia. The conference features research addressing the annual themes.

  • Theme 1: Publishing Practices: Past, Present, and Future
  • Theme 2: Reading, Writing, Literacy, and Learning
  • Theme 3: Books and Libraries

For more information regarding the conference, and to submit an abstract please visit our conference website.

Current proposal submission deadline: 3 July, 2017.


9-12 July 2019, Roma Tre University

Convenors: Professor Maria Del Sapio Garbero and Professor Maddalena Pennacchia

ESRA 2019 will have a special focus on processes of remapping, with consequences for early modern discourses on borders, nations, territories, the world. It will prompt discussions of the place held by such processes in the culture of the period, but it will also foreground the various ways in which they are relevant for current preoccupations and concerns.

As we know, early modern European geography was shattered by a series of disruptive events which resulted not just in a remapping of borders, nations, and world, but had a bearing in problematizing the very notion of space and the place human beings held in a changing order of the universe. Discoveries of new lands and new perimeters, originating from a thirst for knowledge, political ambition, wars, not to mention wars of religion and the reshuffled and transversal geographies designed by faith in post-Reformation Europe, were such as to redefine the sense of belonging, physically as well as mentally, and spiritually.

Questions related to this topic are at the core of Shakespeare’s figurations of multifaceted physical and mental landscapes. And the geographical turn of the past few decades has made us aware of the wide range of thematic, ideological, and theoretical issues related to it.

Our European contemporary geography, constantly redefined by new walls as well as the trespassing movement of massive flows of migrant human beings, invites us to interrogate anew the heuristic and ethical potential of that turn; it also encourages us to bring to the fore and reassess the pervasiveness and problematics of the experience of exile, displacement and dispossession in Shakespearean drama. Thus the topic should be found engaging and compelling by the ESRA community, now that our geopolitics and sense of belonging are being challenged and readjusted, daily, by the crises of human mobility.

All in all the chosen topic should provide ample scope for epistemological approaches as well as for discovering new proximities with the Souths of the world and between Northern and Mediterranean seas, daily crossed and redesigned by thousands of stories of outcasts and shipwrecks.

The topic should also be useful for discovering new contiguities between past and present. Ancient Rome, with its expanded geography, looms large on Shakespeare’s imagination. Rome was a world-wide stage on which to projectthe performances of the Elizabethans’ growing imperial ambitions, in a logic oftranslatio imperii, or of “cultural mobility” in the terms it is being re-conceptualized nowadays.But Rome was also a global stage on which to address issues as crucial as centre, periphery, edges, borders, landmarks, elsewheres, otherness, hybridity, cross-cultural encounters and dynamics.

Thus the topic suits productively the variety of Shakespeare’s geographies as well as the chosen Roman venue.

Potential topics to be addressed may include (but are not limited to):

  1. Geographies of exclusion: centre and peripheries
  2. Narratives of migration and exile
  3. Cartographies of gender and race
  4. Vagrancy and hospitality
  5. Walls and border-crossings
  6. Europe and global Souths
  7. Wilderness, exoticism and liminal places
  8. Translation as geography
  9. Translating and re-translating Shakespeare
  10. Shakespearean migrations across media
  11. Displacing performance
  12. Conflicting geographies of the soul
  13. Geographies of the sacred
  14. Explorations and geographies of the self
  15. Wars of religions and reconfigured geographies
  16. Digital remappings of Shakespeare
  17. Mobile Shakespeare across genres
  18. Circulating books and translation
  19. Universal libraries and local libraries
  20. Translatio Imperii and Cultural Mobility
  21. World and National Shakespeares
  22. Sea-routes and cultural encounters
  23. Shipwrecked identities
  24. Local Shakespeare in performance in the digital space

Members of ESRA are invited to propose a panel and/or a seminar that they would be interested in convening. Proposals of 350-400 words (stating topic, relevance and approach) should be submitted by a panel convenor with the names of the participants (no more than four speakers); as for the seminars, we expect proposals of 250-300 words by 2 or 3 potential convenors from different countries for each seminar.

Please submit proposals by 31 May 2018 via the dedicated platform on the website of the Conference. Address available from the first week of February.

The conference organisers and the Board of ESRA will confirm their final choice of panels and seminars by the first week of July 2018. All convenors will be personally informed of the choices made and the list of seminars will be made available on the ESRA and the Conference websites.

Organising and advisory committee, ESRA 2019

Professor Maria Del Sapio Garbero (convenor) (Roma Tre University)
Professor Maddalena Pennacchia (convenor) (Roma Tre University)
Professor Maurizio Calbi (University of Palermo)
Dr Lisanna Calvi (conference secretary) (University of Verona)


The Kings & Queens conference series will be hosted by Historic Royal Palaces and the University of Winchester for its seventh edition on 9-12 July 2018. The first day will be held at Hampton Court Palace with the remaining days at the University of Winchester.

We aim to connect scholars across the world whose research focuses on topics related to royal history, diplomacy, art history, political history, biographical studies or any other issues included in the scope of royal studies. This edition of the Kings and Queens conference will have a particular focus on gender and sexuality as central themes. We are especially interested in studies relating to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer (LGBTQ) identities and the role of sexuality and gender to royal histories.

We look to gain an understanding of the perceptions, practices and legacies of gender and sexual identities relating to monarchs, royals and their courts, realising that these may have been very different in historic periods to our contemporary understandings. All topics related to these issues will be welcomed, from diverse chronological periods and parts of the world. We hope that interpretation of these topics for the public in heritage contexts will form a particular focus of the day at Hampton Court Palace.

We also welcome papers which are unrelated to our central theme and subtopics but contribute more widely to the field of royal studies.

The following list includes potential topics for papers, panels or posters, which are suggested as inspiration. Proposers should not feel limited by these topics and we welcome a broad range of ideas and interpretations.

Perceptions and Performance

  • The self-representation of monarchs, royals and courtiers
  • Royal and court fashion, including cross-dressing
  • The construction and definition of royal sexual and gender identities, including LGBTQ identities, heterosexuality and straight identities
  • Asexuality and virgin monarchs


  • The lives and roles of companions and influencers, including concubines, mistresses and same-sex favourites
  • The biographies of LGBTQ monarchs, royals and courtiers
  • Propaganda around sexuality and gender identity, whether positive or negative
  • Concealed, illicit or hidden royal relationships
  • Close same-sex friendships


  • The posthumous perception and representation of royal sexuality and gender identity, and how this defines legacy and dynasty
  • The changing historiography and perception of royal sexuality, gender identity and LGBTQ histories
  • The interpretation of royal gender and sexuality in museum and heritage contexts

The conference will include both paper sessions and a poster session at Hampton Court Palace to highlight the developing research of students and early career scholars. Please note that graduate students and early career scholars are welcome to give either posters at the Hampton Court session or papers in the general sessions at Winchester, depending on their preference.

Individual proposals should indicate whether it is for a poster or paper and include a title, institutional affiliation, an abstract of 250-300 words and a short, one page CV or biography. For panels, the proposal should include a maximum of four different papers accompanied by the same information required for individual proposals and a short rationale of approximately 100 words for the panel. If the panel has an institutional or societal sponsor, please include this with the panel proposal.

All proposals should be submitted by 31 December 2017, to kq7winchester@gmail.com and any queries about the conference can also be directed to this address.


9-13 July 2018, Montpellier, France

Summer School website

You’re invited to join us for a unique literary summer school experience in Montpellier, in the south of France, exploring the work of Shakespeare and his world.  Sessions will include lectures from an international group of scholars on various aspects of Shakespeare and the early modern world and on Shakespeare on screen, together with play readings from our focus plays Henry IV Part 1 and Henry V. A detailed programme will be provided closer to the time.

No prior experience is necessary; students, general readers, scholars all welcome!


Dr Victoria Bladen (The University of Queensland, Australia)
Professor Nathalie Vienne-Guerrin (University Paul-Valéry Montpellier 3)
in partnership with the
Institut de Recherche sur la Renaissance, l’âge Classique et les Lumières (IRCL)

Information about the convenors

Enquiries: victoria.bladen@uqconnect.edu.au or  nvienneguerrin@orange.fr


Wittenberg, Germany,  10-13 July 2018

Hosted by MSA President Kirk Melnikoff, the conference will feature keynote presentations by Lukas Erne (University of Geneva), Kristen Poole (University of Delaware), and Holger Syme (University of Toronto). Tours of the Luther House, the Melanchthon House, the Castle Church, and Cranach Studios will complement special events, workshops, screenings, and productions designed specially for conference attendees. We hope you will join us—and participate.

Papers should be no more than fifteen minutes in length and present original research on any topic concerning the works of Christopher Marlowe. We welcome proposals for individual papers and complete panels. Please send the following by email to the conference Program Chair, Lucy Munro, University of London, King’s College: lucy.munro@kcl.ac.uk.

For individual papers, an abstract of 300-500 words;

For complete panels, an overview of the panel and abstracts of the individual papers, totalling 1200-1500 words.

The deadline for submission of abstracts is Friday, July 28, 2017.


The 2nd Annual Pacific Partnership in Late Antiquity conference will be held at the University of Auckland from July 11-13 2018. Proposals can be for papers in any area of late antique, early medieval or Byzantine studies and the conference is intended to provide a venue for scholars in these fields around the Pacific Rim.

Submissions close on 1 October and should be sent to Lisa Bailey: lk.bailey@auckland.ac.nz.

For further information please contact Lisa or visit the Centre for Hellenic Studies website.


9th Conference of the European network “Gender Differences in the History of European Legal Cultures”, German Historical Institute, London, 19-21 July 2018

Conveners: Annette Cremer (Gießen), Hannes Ziegler (London)

The history of material cultures offers important new ways of studying the significance of gender differences in the history of legal cultures by exploring new relationships between gender, law and material culture. Material and immaterial possession informs the self-image of individuals and societies, dynasties and families. A threefold scheme of legal distinction differentiates between usufruct (1), possession (2), and property (3). Yet these relationships between individuals and objects are not only relevant to civil law, but correspond to political regimes. While usufruct, possession and property thus correspond to different forms of authority and society, they also have a bearing on gender relations on different levels of society. Usually, these gendered aspects of material culture are the products of traditional proximities between certain areas of activity and related groups of objects. Communities in early modern Europe can thus be said to have a gendered and often legally sanctioned relationship to the material world and the world of objects.

Our assumption is that this situation led to social rivalries and gender-informed conflicts between individual members of societies regarding usufruct, possession, and property. The action of taking possession of something is thus more than just a way of achieving material security, but a form of social practice and a way of self-assertion: in order to gain social status, as a way of accumulating social capital or broadening one’s personal or dynastic room for manoeuvre. In this respect, the single most important event is the distribution of goods in generational succession. Despite their chronologically wide applicability, we would like to explore these questions with respect to early modern history.

The starting point for our conference is objects and groups of objects, that is to say, mobile and immobile resources, and their relationships with gender, structures of power, estate orders, customs and legal norms. Perspectives from social and legal sciences will thus be combined with approaches from material culture studies. Our basic assumption is that ways and forms of usufruct, possession and property regarding certain objects inform the self-image and the prospects of individuals and families. What changes and dynamics can be observed in relation to the correlations between gender and objects? What differences occur between different forms of societies?

The network “Gender Differences in the History of European Legal Cultures” operates in a diachronic and comparative way. We are therefore looking for papers engaging with the relationships between objects, gendered self-images and rights of ownership on the basis of textual, pictorial and material sources in Europe between 1450 and 1850. Despite this emphasis on early modern history, we also encourage proposals that highlight transitions from the Middle Ages. Papers should engage with one or more of the following themes and questions:

  1. How can the distinction between movables and immovables be explained? On what experiences and everyday considerations is it based?
  2. When does the category of movables become relevant? Is the understanding of the house as immovable based on its material aspects, eg fabrics?
  3. Does the gendered coding of movables and immovables exist in different legal areas? How is the attribution of gendered codes argued for?
  4. What are the consequences of gendered attributions of objects and resources? Does the distribution of resources lead to specific hazards or profits?
  5. What objects are especially disputed? We are looking for examples of individuals trying to take possession of mobile and immobile, material and immaterial resources.
  6. Can tensions be discerned between the aims and interests of households and family units and the superior interests of the manorial system, the economies of cities and states, or the public weal?
  7. Does the distinction between mobiles and immobiles extend beyond legal norms? How is it handled in Common or Roman Law?
  8. What are the strategies of testators for distributing their property? How binding were marriage contracts and last wills in the case of succession?
  9. What institutions are resorted to in case of conflicts?
  10. How is the value of mobiles and immobiles assessed? How relevant are market values, auctions and valuers?
  11. What is the role of gender, marital status, age, social standing, and religious confession for pursuing one’s interest and the chances of success in the case of judicial
  12. What is the influence of the distribution of wealth on power relations within the family?
  13. And finally: what is the shape of households that have been reorganised by gavelkind, single heir rule and other mechanisms of distribution? In other words: how is the redistribution of goods handled within households?

Keynotes will be presented by:

  • Amy Erickson (Cambridge) and Margareth Lanzinger (Wien)

Please send your proposals for papers (appr. 1 page/300 words) together with a short academic CV by 15 October 2017 to: annette.cremer@geschichte.uni-giessen.de and ziegler@ghil.ac.uk.


In 2018 the 57th Summer Conference will be held at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, on 24-26 July, on the theme of The Church and the Law. As ever, the intention is to attract a broad spectrum of papers from across the history of Christianity.

Please be aware of the final deadline of 31 March.

Postgraduate students should also be aware that the EHS offers a number of generous bursaries which cover the FULL COST of attending the conference and half bursaries for those who already have some funding from other sources. Please note that in a change to previous practice, bursary applications should now be made alongside your paper proposal, the deadline now being the same: 31 March.

The relevant forms and a poster can be downloaded from the website.


July 26-27 2018, Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies, Room 480, Level 4, Madsen Building, University of Sydney

Plato claimed that poets of tragic drama ‘drag states into tyranny and democracy’. The word order is very deliberate: he goes on to say that tragic poets are honoured ‘especially by the tyrants, and secondly by the democracies’ (Republic 568c). For more than forty years scholars have explored the political, ideological, structural and economic links between democracy and theatre in ancient Greece. By contrast, the links between autocracy and theatre are virtually ignored, despite the fact that in the first 200 years of its existence more than a third of all theatre-states were autocratic. For the next 600 years, theatre flourished exclusively in autocratic regimes. The conference brings together experts in ancient theatre to undertake the first systematic study of the patterns of use made of the theatre by tyrants, regents, kings and emperors. For two generations theatre has, as an instrument of mass communication, been characterised as ancient democracy’s supreme cultural artefact. Our conference will explore the historical circumstances and means by which autocrats turned a medium of mass communication into an instrument of mass control.

For More information contact Billy Kennedy william.kennedy@sydney.edu.au.


Lucia Athanassaki (University of Crete), Ewen Bowie (Oxford University), Bob Cowan (University of Sydney), Eric Csapo (University of Sydney), Anne Duncan (University of Nebraska-Lincoln), Simon Goldhill (Cambridge University), Hans Goette (German Archaeological Institute and University of Giessen), Chris Kraus (Yale University), Brigitte Le Guen (University of Paris 8), Chris de L’Isle (Oxford University), Nino Luraghi (Princeton University), Elodie Paillard (Universities of Basel and Sydney), Simon Perris (University of Wellington), Jelle Stoop (University of Sydney), Paul Touyz (Princeton University), Peter Wilson (University of Sydney)

Student Travel Bursaries

A number of travel bursaries are available to doctoral students who wish to attend the conference. Please register your interest before March 15, 2018, by sending (as a single pdf file) a short letter of application, stating how the theme of the conference relates to the topic of your PhD, a CV (with list of publications) and a short reference letter from your supervisor to Billy Kennedy at william.kennedy@sydney.edu.au.

Conference Organisers

Eric Csapo (University of Sydney), J. R. Green (University of Sydney), Brigitte Le Guen (University of Paris 8), Elodie Paillard (Universities of Basel and Sydney) Jelle Stoop (University of Sydney), Peter Wilson (University of Sydney)


Registration and attendance is free.  Please confirm your place by emailing Billy Kennedy by July 2 2018 at william.kennedy@sydney.edu.au.

Sponsored By

  • Australian Research Council
  • Centre for Classical and Near Eastern Studies of Australia
  • Ian Potter Foundation
  • Nicholson Museum, University of Sydney
  • School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry, University of Sydney


23-26 August 2018

We are pleased to announce that the 24th biennial conference of SASMARS will be held at Mont Fleur in Stellenbosch, South Africa from Thursday the 23rd to Sunday the 26th of August 2018.

“Ancestry and Memory in Medieval and Early Modern Worlds”

Keynote Speaker: Professor Alexandra Walsham, University of Cambridge

Medieval and early modern societies weathered various socio-cultural changes, including religious, economic, and political transformations, across a range of different geographies and in both urban and rural spaces. We seek papers from any applicable discipline that explore ancestry and memory within a variety of geographic locales in the medieval and/or early modern eras. We shall welcome broad and imaginative interpretations of “ancestry” and “memory”.

Deadline: Please send a conference proposal and a short biography to Retha Knoetze: knoetr@unisa.ac.za by 18 February 2018. Any inquiries can be directed to the same email address.


Conference at Victoria University of Wellington, 27-29 August 2018.

First Call for Papers

Readers have been attracted to the remarkable and wondrous, the admirable and the uncanny in Tacitus. But in order to appreciate what is mirum or novum, we also need to understand the apparently mundane material between the monstra. Tacitus famously derides the praises of new public buildings as a topic more worthy of the daily gazette than illustres annales (A. 13.31.1); his own criteria for selection, however, and his own judgments on what is worthy of note, have often differed in interesting ways from the preoccupations of his readers.

Abstracts (250 words) are invited on the topic of Tacitus’ wonders.

Submissions on comparative material are very much welcome.

Reflection is invited on the consequences of different methods of dividing or reconciling historical events and historiographical representation, e.g. Woodman (1993), O’Gorman (2001), Haynes (2003), and Sailor (2008). In preparing abstracts, it will be helpful to consider the challenge extended by Dench (in Feldherr, 2009), the ‘awkward question’ of whether the much admired Tacitean text ‘represents anything other than itself’. Papers treating the Classical tradition, reception and history of scholarship are welcome.

Please send abstracts to James McNamara at Victoria University of Wellington (james.mcnamara@vuw.ac.nz) by Friday 26 January 2018.

Professor Arthur Pomeroy
Dr James McNamara

Classics Programme
School of Art History, Classics and Religious Studies
Victoria University of Wellington
New Zealand


British Archaeological Association Annual Conference 2018, Cambridge, UK, 1-5 September 2018

The Association holds an annual conference at a centre of established importance in the medieval period, usually in the British Isles and occasionally in mainland Europe.

The annual conferences focus on the medieval art, architecture and archaeology of one location, and visit all the city’s or areas most important medieval sites, including some not usually accessible to the public.

All our conferences welcome professional scholars and amateur enthusiasts alike who are members of the association.

For more information please see the British Archaeological Association Annual Conferences web page.

Abstracts due: 1 February 2018.


Sacred Science: Learning from the Tree

European Society for the History of Science Biennial Conference September 14-17 2018

We are pleased to announce that Trames Arborescentes is preparing a symposium for the European Society for the History of Science’s conference that will take place in London on September 2018.

"Unity and Disunity" has been chosen as the main theme for the aforementioned meeting. Within this framework, Trames Arborescentes has decided to participate by proposing a commented panel that will gather four speakers around the subject "Sacred Science: Learning from the Tree".

Proposals containing personal information (including academic affiliation), an abstract and a short bio are welcome for this panel. The document may be submitted to our email address tramesarborescentes@gmail.com before December 12.

Symposium Abstract

Sacred Science: Learning from the Tree

This panel traces the arboreal motif through time, using it as a means to reflect on unity and disunity of interaction between science, art and the sacred. Indeed, the figure of the tree has been used as a visualization tool to structure knowledge since Antiquity. However, it turns out that the tree of the Arts and Sciences is a deciduous tree. Its holy leaves, metaphorical expressions of unseen secrets, have been shed as science gradually broke away from the sacred. The apparent unity of its branches, the Arts and the Sciences, became exposed and fractured. What was the role of the arboreal structure in this process?

Three points will stand in our proposal. Firstly, we will question how the treediagram was used to articulate the conjunction of the Arts, the Sciences and the Sacred. During the Middle Ages, tree diagrams were commonly used in the arts degree as tools to study arithmetic, geometry, astronomy, music theory, grammar, logic and rhetoric. These frameworks of learning in the universities were infused with the sacred, they sprang from the sacred. Gradually though, the Arts and Sciences began to be distinguished, subjects changed categories. But even as Darwin was developing his theory of life, the sacred continued to play a role in scientific discovery and communication. How was this distinction nuanced in every period?

The second point will focus on the loss of the sacred and the sacralization of knowledge. In effect, step by step, the distinction between the arts and sciences gradually became a divide and the concept of sacred changed in this learning context. The sacred was given less space in the hierarchies of knowledge, it no longer penetrated every aspect of learning. At some point knowledge itself became sacred. When and how did this happen? What rapport did the sacred have in this dramatic change in our perception of knowledge? Was this new knowledge disruptive? Did it bring about unity or disunity? Is the current dissociation between the Arts and Sciences a consequence of divorcing knowledge from the sacred?

Thirdly, we will examine arboreal motifs in our contemporary era, when encyclopedic knowledge and three-dimensional mind maps, once again seek to chart the infinite, the unknown, what is not seen by the naked eye. Are these new worlds in new dimensions still shown shaped in a tree-form? If so, what knowledge does the tree convey? Why is the arboreal structure effective? How is the sacred expressed (if at all) in this structure?

The dialectic relationship between unity and disunity seems perfectly tailored to the branching of the tree-diagram, which also allows expression of a hierarchical combination ad infinitum. The centrality and unity – concepts in which the trunk of these diagrams was firmly rooted, has been shifted for new multifocal tree-figures, which grant us plenty of new possibilities that adapt well to current models of information visualization. This panel uses arboreal constructs as a means to look into the sacred/knowledge relationship in order to question the forthcoming cognitive patterns of unity and disunity that will shape our near future.


Ghent University (Belgium), 20-22 September 2018

Confirmed keynote speakers: Michelle Warren (University of Dartmouth) - Mark Vessey (University of British Columbia) - Irene Zwiep (University of Amsterdam)

“Der einzige Weg für uns, groß, ja, wenn es möglich ist, unnachahmlich zu werden, is die Nachahmung der Alten.” Johannes Winckelmann

Classics played a major and fundamental role in the cultural history of Western Europe. Few would call this into question. Since the Carolingian period, notably ‘classical’ literature has served as a constant source and model of creativity and inspiration, by which the literary identity of Europe has been negotiated and (re-)defined. The tendency to return to the classics and resuscitate them remains sensible until today, as classical themes and stories are central to multiple contemporary literary works, both in ‘popular’ and ‘high’ culture. Think for instance of Rick Riordan’s fantastic tales about Percy Jackson or Colm Tóibín’s refined novels retelling the Oresteia.

At the same time, this orientation and fascination towards the classics throughout literary history has often —implicitly or explicitly— gone hand in hand with the cultivation of a certain normativity, regarding aesthetics, content, decency, theory, … Classical works, and the ideals that were projected on them, have frequently been considered as the standard against which the quality of a literary work should be measured. Whether a text was evaluated as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ depended on the extent to which it could meet the ‘classical’ requirements. Probably the most famous example of someone advocating such a classical norm was the German art critic Johannes Winckelmann (1717-1768), whose death will be commemorated in 2018. His Geschichte der Kunst des Altertums may be considered as the embodiment of the idea that the classics should be the norm for aesthetic or even any evaluation, such as, in Western Europe, it has recurrently cropped up, to a greater or lesser degree, from the Early Middle Ages until modern times.

Almost inevitably, this normativity has implied, shaped and fed prejudices and thoughts of exclusion towards literary features and aesthetic characteristics that seemed to deviate from classical ideals. Throughout literary history, examples occur of literary works, styles and genres that were generally appreciated within their time or context of origin, yet whose quality was retrospectively called into question because they were said not to be in accordance with the classical norm as it prevailed at the moment of judgement. Sometimes, this has even applied to whole periods. The persistence of similar assessments up until today is telling for the impact classical normativity still exercises. Besides, literary texts, though clearly not created to conform to the ‘classical’ standard, have been ‘classicized’ during judgement, being forced by a critic to fit into a classical framework and celebrated for its so-called imitation of antiquity. Even the Classics themselves often had and have to obey to this process of ‘classicization’. Therefore, with a sense for drama, one could say that all these works, literary forms, periods, etc. have seriously ‘suffered’ from the prejudices born from classics-based normativity, being the ‘victims’ of Winckelmann-like ideas concerning ‘classical’ standards.

This conference aims to consider classical normativity with its including prejudices and exclusions as a case-study for cultural self-fashioning by way of European literature. It seeks to explore how the normative status ascribed to the classics and the ensuing prejudices have, from the Early Middle Ages to modern times, influenced and shaped thoughts and views of the literary identity of Western Europe. Therefore, we propose the following questions:

  • What are the processes behind this normativity of the Classics? Is it possible to discern a conceptual continuum behind the time and again revival of the Classics as the norm for ‘good’ literature? Or, rather, are there clear conceptual and concrete divergences between succeeding periods of such ‘classical’ normativity?
  • What are the links (conceptual, historical, aesthetic, political, …) between the normativity of the Classics and the excluded ones, both in synchronic and diachronic terms? How does literary normativity of the Classics imply literary prejudices and exclusions?
  • How has normativity of the Classics with its prejudices and exclusions imposed an identity on European literature (and literary culture)?
  • What does this normativity of the Classics with its prejudices and exclusions mean for the conceptualization of European literary history?

Besides these conceptual questions, we also welcome case studies that may illustrate both the concrete impact of classical normativity and concrete examples of prejudice and exclusion as resulting from this normativity. We think of topics such as

  • the Classics themselves as victims of retrospective ‘classical’ normativity
  • the exclusion of literary periods that are considered non- or even contra-classical (baroque, medieval, …) and the clash with non-European literature
  • literary ‘renaissances’ and their implications
  • classical normativity and its impact on literatures obedient to political aims (fascism, populism,…)
  • literary appeal to the classics as a way of structuring and (re-)formulating society (‘higher’ liberal arts vs. ‘lower’ crafts and proficiencies, literary attitudes towards slavery, …)

We accept papers in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish. Please send an abstract of ca. 300 words and a five line biography to relics@ugent.be by 15 April 2018.

Organisation: Wim Verbaal, Paolo Felice Sacchi and Tim Noens are members of the research group RELICS (Researchers of European Literary Identities, Cosmopolitanism and the Schools). This research group studies historical literatures and the dynamics that shape a common, European literary identity. It sees this literary identity as particularly negotiated through languages that reached a cosmopolitan status due to fixed schooling systems (Latin, Greek and Arabic), and in their interaction with vernacular literatures. From a diachronic perspective, we aim to seek unity within the ever more diverse, literary Europe, from the first to the eighteenth century, i.e. from the beginning of (institutionally organized) education in the cosmopolitan language to the rise of more national oriented education.


26-28 September 2018
Malmö University, Sweden
The deadline for paper proposals is 15 December 2017.
Proposals with an abstract of maximum 100 words to Sara Ellis Nilsson.

Conference call for papers


The Second ASA International Conference in Yerevan, Armenia, 27-30 September 2018.

Dedicated to the 130th anniversary of legendary actor Vahram Papazian (1888-1968).

The Armenian Shakespeare Association (ASA) is delighted to invite Shakespearean scholars, translators, theatre critics, directors, actors and research students across the world to its second international conference in Armenia’s capital Yerevan.

The conference is organised in partnership with the American University in Armenia (AUA) and the National Museum of Theatre and Literature (NMTL), where seminar discussions will take place. At the same time, conference guests will be able to attend HIFEST, an annual International Theatre Festival in the capital of Armenia since 2003. ASA will also arrange sightseeing tours and evening entertainment each day during the conference.

Expenses covered: the transport between Yerevan International airport and the hotel, lunches and breaks, daily sightseeing tours and visits to museums with multi-lingual guides as well as evening entertainment. Flights to and from Armenia, accommodation and evening meals are not covered. No visa required for EU and USA citizens for travelling to Armenia.  Visas for other countries.

The registration form and the conference fee of £80 must be sent via our website as soon as possible. Abstracts of around 300 words should be submitted via email before 30 April 2018. International scholars are encouraged to propose their own panel, please register your interest before 30 March. The conference proposes the following panel discussions, however other suggestions are welcome:

· 2018 spotlight on Othello: global/local variations and their significance in adoptive countries

· Reviewing Shakespearean performances: dramatic, cinematic, musical and ballet adaptations

· Translating Shakespeare: linguistic, geographic and poetic challenges (translators particularly welcome)

· Shakespearean collections across the world: public and private libraries, research centres and digital collections (libraries, professional and amateur collectors welcome)

· Round table: why teach Shakespeare, how to engage the new generation in Shakespearean studies

For all inquiries contact: asassociation400@gmail.com

Download the application form.


Submission online by: February 15, 2018, Thursday, 11:59 EST
Notification email by: March 15, 2018, Thursday

The Forty-fourth Annual Byzantine Studies Conference (BSC) will be held in San Antonio, Texas, October 4-7 2018.

For information on BSANA, please consult the BSANA website, http://www.bsana.net; for details on the conference, please consult the 2018 BSC website, which will be further updated as new information becomes available.

The Local Arrangements Chair for 2018 is Dr. Annie Labatt of the Department of Art and Art History at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

The BSC is the annual forum for the presentation and discussion of papers on every aspect of Byzantine Studies and is open to all, regardless of nationality or academic status. It is also the occasion of the annual meeting of the Byzantine Studies Association of North America (BSANA), conducted by its officers:
President: Emmanuel Bourbouhakis, Literature (Princeton University, NJ) (ebourbou@Princeton.EDU)
Vice President: Jennifer Ball, Art History (City University of New York, NY) (jennball312@gmail.com)
Secretary: Marica Cassis, Archaeology (Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada) (bsanasec@yahoo.com)
Treasurer: Betsy Williams, Dumbarton Oaks (bsana.treasurer@gmail.com)

We welcome proposals on any aspect of Byzantine studies. Call for papers.


As part of its ongoing commitment to Byzantine studies, the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture seeks proposals for a Mary Jaharis Center sponsored session at the 44th Annual Byzantine Studies Conference to be held in San Antonio, TX, October 4–7 2018. We invite session proposals on any topic relevant to Byzantine studies.

Session proposals must be submitted through the Mary Jaharis Center website (https://maryjahariscenter.org/sponsored-sessions/44th-annual-annual-byzantine-studies-conference). The deadline for submission is February 5, 2018. Proposals should include:

  • Proposed session title
  • CV of session organizer
  • 300-word session summary, which includes a summary of the overall topic, the format for the panel (such as a debate, papers followed by a discussion, or a traditional session of papers), and the reasons for covering the topic as a prearranged, whole session
  • Session chair and academic affiliation. Please note: Session chairs cannot present a paper in the session
  • Information about the four papers to be presented in the session. For each paper: name of presenter and academic affiliation, proposed paper title, and 500-word abstract. Please note: Presenters must be members of BSANA in good standing

Session organizers may present a paper in the session or chair the session. If a co-organzier is proposed for the session, the co-organizer must also give a paper in the session or chair the session.

Applicants will be notified by February 9, 2018. The organizer of the selected session is responsible for submitting the session to the BSC by February 15, 2018. Instructions for submitting the panel proposal are included in the BSC Call for Papers.

If the proposed session is approved, the Mary Jaharis Center will reimburse session participants (presenters and chair, if the proposed chair is selected by the BSC program committee) up to $600 maximum for North American residents and up to $1200 maximum for those coming from abroad. Funding is through reimbursement only (check issued in US dollars or wire transfer); advance funding cannot be provided. Eligible expenses include conference registration, transportation, and food and lodging. Receipts are required for reimbursement.

Please contact Brandie Ratliff (mjcbac@hchc.edu), Director, Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture with any questions.


October 12-13 2018, Brock University, St. Catharines, ON, Canada

St Catharines, Ontario, Canada, the location of Brock University, is just 19 kilometres from the Niagara River, the boundary between Canada and the United States of America. In this location, then, it seems appropriate to think about medievalism and boundary crossing. Plenary sessions will cross disciplinary boundaries by investigating similarities in concerns, methods, and themes between the fields of (neo)medievalism(s) and the Neo-Victorian. For regular conference sessions, proposals are invited on the conference theme. Papers might address the ways in which medievalism crosses the boundaries of, or is used to interrogate the boundaries of

  • genres/subgenres
  • national designations
  • temporal periods
  • academic disciplines
  • the academic and the popular
  • gender
  • sexuality
  • class
  • race
  • human / non-human

Please send one-page proposals to Dr Ann F. Howey, Associate Professor at Brock University (ahowey@brocku.ca), by March 26, 2018.

St Catharines, in the Niagara Peninsula, is located midway between Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and Buffalo, New York, USA; both cities have international airports, and airport shuttles service the Niagara region from both airports. St Catharines is located in the heart of Niagara’s wine producing region and is also close to tourist attractions such as Niagara Falls and Niagara-on-the-Lake, with its famous Shaw Festival theatre productions.


Deadline for submissions: February 15 2018

University of Milan, Department of Cultural Heritage and Environment, Chair of History of Medieval Art, 16-18 October 2018.

Contact email: oldtestament2018@gmail.com

The Chair of History of Medieval Art, Department of Cultural Heritage and Environment, University of Milan, organises an International Conference concerning the Old Testament narrative in medieval wall painting. Four thematic sessions are scheduled, calling for 20 minutes papers to be presented in Italian/English/French.

1st session: Early Christian Pictorial Tradition and Early Middle Ages

The aim is to bring into focus the relationship between the monumental pictorial tradition set up in the early Christian Rome and its reworking in the early Middle Ages. To what extent did the paradigm of Santa Maria Maggiore, Old St. Peter’s and San Paolo fuori le Mura expressed its leading role in Old Testament sequences like those in Santa Maria Antiqua and Santa Maria in via Lata in Rome, in the Crypt of the Original Sin in Matera, or in St. John in Müstair? On the other hand, what was the impact of different models (also Byzantine), of patronage and liturgical space in setting the iconographic programme?

2nd session: The Thematic and Narrative Development in the Romanesque Period

The widespread revival of early Christian iconography in the Romanesque period is reflected by the Old Testament narrative, which regains room in church decorations, especially dealing with the first part of the Genesis: mainly in the Roman area (Santa Maria in Ceri, San Tommaso in Anagni, San Paolo inter vineas in Spoleto, Castro dei Volsci, Ferentillo, San Giovanni a Porta Latina), but also in the South (Sant’Angelo in Formis, Santa Maria d’Anglona), in the northern Italy (Galliano, Agliate, Carugo, Muralto, Acquanegra), north of the Alps (Saint-Savin and Château-Gontier in France; Idensen, Brauweiler and Berghausen in Germany; Gurk and Matrei in Austria), and in the Iberian Peninsula (Bagüés, Sigena). The session will offer the opportunity to compare subjects, themes and solutions on a European scale, highlighting continuity, recurrences, peculiarities, deviations and anomalies.

3rd session: Old Testament Cycles and Multi-layered Meaning

Universal chronicles remind us that an Old Testament cycle was primarily a historical and chronological depiction of the humankind on the path to salvation: the ‘visual device’ in the nave of Acquanegra is a clear example. Still, the events before the Incarnation shall be understood in a figurative sense, what is depicted in Agliate lining up the Creation of Adam and Eve precisely above the Annunciation and the Nativity. This does not preclude a manipulation driven by political claims, as seems to be expressed in the cycle of Joseph in San Marco in Venice. Therefore, a full account of the visual relationships within the liturgical space is required.

4th session: The Role of Patriarchs, Judges, Prophets and Kings

Since at least the mid 5th century, with the mosaic panels in the nave of Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome, the Hebrew Scripture has also been illustrated through the stories of its protagonists: Patriarchs (Moses and Joshua in San Calocero in Civate), Judges (Samson in Galliano and Civate, Gideon in Civate and Sant’Angelo in Formis), Prophets (Ezekiel and Daniel in Santa Maria in Cosmedin in Rome), Kings (David in Müstair and Malles), involving a wide range of meanings, relationships and implications, which are still waiting to be figured out.


Proposals should cover a wide range of aspects concerning each session, giving priority to the iconographic approach, to the relationships with the liturgical space and to the historical-institutional frame. Topics dealing with the monumental contexts mentioned above are especially welcome.

Proposals will be evaluated by the conference scientific committee.

Submissions for a 20 minutes paper (in Italian/English/French) should include: paper title, abstract of around 300 words, a short CV including current affliation and full contact details. All documents should be merged into a single PDF file.
Proposals and enquiries should be sent to: oldtestament2018@gmail.com


Deadline for submissions: 15 February 2018.
Notification to the applicants: by 31 March 2018.
Final programme: by September 2018.
It is expected to publish in a double-blind Peer review Series.
Speakers will be asked to provide a final paper by 30 June 2019.

Practical Information

There is no registration fee for participation or attendance.
Coffee breaks, lunches, and dinners will be provided to all speakers. Travel and accommodation expenses cannot be covered, but every effort will be made to secure special hotel rates.

Conference Director
Fabio Scirea
PhD, Lecturer in History of Medieval Art

Conference Scientific Committee
Mauro della Valle, Stella Ferrari, Paolo Piva, Fabio Scirea, Andrea Torno Ginnasi
History of Medieval Art, University of Milan


Providence, Rhode Island, October 25-28, 2018

Deadline: 30 March 2018

The NACBS and its affiliate, the Northeast Conference on British Studies, seek participation by scholars in all areas of British Studies for the 2018 meeting. We will meet in Providence, Rhode Island, from October 25-28, 2018. We solicit proposals for presentations on Britain, the British Empire, and the British world, including topics relating to component parts of Britain and on British influence (or vice versa) in Ireland, the Commonwealth, and former colonies in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean (etc.) Our interests range from the medieval to the modern. We welcome participation by scholars from across the humanities and social sciences, from all parts of the globe (not just North America), and from all career stages and backgrounds. We reaffirm our commitment to British Studies broadly conceived, and welcome proposals that reflect the diversity of scholars and scholarship in the field.

We invite panel proposals that address selected themes, methodology, and pedagogy, as well as roundtable discussions of topical and thematic interest, including conversations among authors of recent books, reflections on landmark scholarship, and discussions about professional practice.  We are particularly interested in submissions that have a broad chronological focus and/or interdisciplinary breadth.  Standard panels typically include three presenters speaking for 20 minutes each, a commentator, and a chair, while roundtables typically include four presenters speaking for 15 minutes each and a chair. We are open to other formats, though; please feel free to consult with the program committee chair.

We hope to secure as broad a range of participation as possible and will thus consider individual paper proposals in addition to the standard full panel proposals. Our preference is for panels that include both emerging and established scholars; we welcome the participation of junior scholars and Ph.D. candidates beyond the qualifying stage. To foster intellectual interchange, we ask applicants to compose panels that feature participation from multiple institutions. In an effort to allow a broader range of participants, no participant will be permitted to take part in more than one session in a substantial role. (That is, someone presenting or commenting on one panel cannot also present or comment on another, though individuals presenting or commenting on one panel may serve as chairs for other panels, if need be.) Submissions are welcome from participants in last year’s conference, though if the number of strong submissions exceeds the number of available spaces, selection decisions may take into account recent participation.

As complete panels are more likely to be accepted, we recommend that interested participants issue calls on H-Albion or social media (e.g., @TheNACBS on Twitter or on the NACBS Facebook page) to arrange a panel. If a full panel cannot be arranged by the deadline, however, please do submit the individual proposal and the program committee will try to build submissions into full panels as appropriate.

In addition to the panels, we will be sponsoring a poster session. The posters will be exhibited throughout the conference, and there will be a scheduled time when presenters will be with their posters to allow for further discussion.

The submission website is now open - submissions will close as of March 30 2018.

All submissions are electronic, and need to be completed in one sitting.   Before you start your submission, you should have the following information:

Names, affiliations and email addresses for all panel participants. PLEASE NOTE: We create the program from the submission, so be sure that names, institutional titles, and paper titles are provided as they should appear on the program.  
A note whether data projection is necessary, desired, or unnecessary.
A brief summary CV for each participant, indicating education, current affiliations, and major publications. (750 words maximum per CV.)
Title and Abstract for each paper or presentation. Roundtables do not need titles for each presentation, but if you have them, that is fine. If there is no title, there should still be an abstract - ie “X will speak about this subject through the lens of this period/approach/region etc.”
POSTERS: Those proposing posters should enter organizer information and first presenter information only.
All communication will be through the panel organizer, who will be responsible for ensuring that members of the panel receive the information they need.

All program presenters must be current members of the NACBS by September 28, one month before the conference, or risk being removed from the program.

Some financial assistance will become available for graduate students (up to $500) and for a limited number of under/unemployed members within ten years of their terminal degree ($300). Details of these travel grants and how to apply will be posted to the NACBS website and emailed to members after the program for the 2018 meeting is prepared.


Symposium website.

University of Pittsburgh’s History of Art and Architecture 2018 Graduate Symposium, 2-3 November 2018.  We’re especially interested in the function of monuments and monumentality in the premodern world.  Abstracts for a 20 minute presentation are due midnight 30 March 2018 at pittgradsymposium@gmail.com.  Feel free to use Facebook or twitter to contact us or follow us for updates @pitthaagradsymp


Administrative Accountability in the Later Middle Ages: Records, Procedures and their Societal Impact, Bucharest, 16-17 November 2018

The emergence of new types of financial records, the creation of institutional procedures, and the birth of a bureaucratic corps in a society in which accountability had been largely social and moral represent key developments in the history of the later Middle Ages. The colloquium will explore the multifaceted reality of administrative accountability in Western Europe, c. 1200-1450. Because the renewed interest in the subject makes methodological exchanges all the more timely, the colloquium will provide a venue for testing new approaches to the sources. Special attention will be given to underexplored archival documents, such as the castellany accounts (computi) of late-medieval Savoy, and to topics that have hitherto received less attention, such as the social impact of institutional consolidation. Comparisons with better-known texts, such as the English pipe rolls, are also encouraged.

The colloquium is organised in the frame of the European Research Council Starting Grant no. 638436, ‘Record-keeping, fiscal reform, and the rise of institutional accountability in late-medieval Savoy: a source-oriented approach’ (University of Bucharest)

Proposals for 30-minute papers are invited on topics including:

  • the institutional dialogue between the central and local administration
  • the impact of administrative and fiscal reform on local communities
  • accounting practices and the auditing of financial records
  • the cultural underpinnings of medieval accountability
  • prosopography: background and career of administrators, from auditing clerks to castellans
  • methodological advances, from manuscript studies to sociological frameworks
  • the transfer of administrative models across medieval Europe

The colloquium papers, which will collected in an edited volume published with an international academic press, should reflect original, unpublished research. The authors will be given the opportunity to revise their contributions for publication.

Papers can be presented in English or French; if delivered in French, it is the author’s responsibility to have the paper translated into English for publication.

For inquiries, contact Ionuț Epurescu-Pascovici (ionut.epurescu-pascovici@icub.unibuc.ro) or Roberto Biolzi (roberto.biolzi@unil.ch).

Proposals of circa 300 words, outlining the source material, methodology, and anticipated findings, should be emailed to ionut.epurescu-pascovici@icub.unibuc.ro by 30 March 2018.

The organisers will provide three nights hotel accommodation and help defray travel expenses.

Administrative accountability in the later Middle Ages website


Conference website

The Middle Ages in the Modern World is a biennial conference about the ways in which the Middle Ages have been received, imagined, invoked, relived, used, abused and refashioned in the modern and contemporary worlds.

Hosted by John Cabot University and the Ecole française de Rome, MAMO 2018 will take place for the first time outside of Great Britain, in the historic center of Rome, on 21–24 November 2018.

Proposals for twenty-minute papers pertinent to medievalism in all parts of the world are warmly welcome, as are planned panels of three twenty-minute papers each. Proposals and papers may be presented in English, Italian or French.

Paper and panel proposals are especially welcome in the following areas:


  • Medievalism in contemporary public discourse
  • Southern Europe and the Mediterranean
  • North South East West
  • Comparative periodization
  • Early Modern medievalism
  • Non-European perspectives


  • Medievalism in modern and contemporary arts: visual, musical, architectural, theatrical
  • Experimental archaeology
  • Public history
  • Festivals and re-enactments
  • Re-inhabiting medieval spaces
  • Medievalism and tourism
  • Medieval material heritage: loss,restoration, adaptation
  • How science and technology are transforming modern perceptions of the medieval world

For individual papers, please send abstracts of 250 words to: themamoconference@gmail.com.

Panel proposals should include abstracts, names, and contact details of presenters and a short (c. 200 word) description of the panel itself and the organiser’s contact details.


1 December 2018

The 26th Biennial Conference of the Medieval and Renaissance Studies Program of Barnard College

Plenary Speakers

Lorna Hutson (University of Oxford)
Dyan Elliott (Northwestern University)

The capacity of language both to communicate truth and to manipulate perceptions of it was as vexed a problem for the Middle Ages and Renaissance as it is today. From Augustine to Erasmus, enthusiasm for the study of rhetoric was accompanied by profound concern about its capacity to mask the difference between authenticity and deceit, revelation and heresy, truth and truthiness. Even the claim of authenticity or transparency could become, some thinkers argued, a deliberate form of manipulation or “spin.” In our current era when public figures aim to create effects of immediacy and authenticity, this conference looks at the history of debates about rhetoric and, more generally, about the presentation of transparency and truthfulness. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, this conference considers the role of the verbal arts in the history of literature, law, politics, theology, and historiography, but also broadens the scope of rhetoric to include such topics as the rhetoric of the visual arts and the language of the new science to produce effects of objective access to “things themselves.”

Please submit an abstract of 250-300 words and a 2-page CV by April 30 2018 to Rachel Eisendrath, reisendr@barnard.edu


Paris, Fondation Deutsch de la Meurthe, 10-12 January 2019

Conference website

In the title of a book published in 1973, Terence Hawkes spoke of “Shakespeare’s talking animals”. Language and communication are not, by far the only features which, for the playwright, served to differentiate men from animals. As the son of a Stratford glover, who, in his young days, must have attended the slaughter and suffering of beasts while being made an apprentice in the treatment of their skins, Shakespeare developed a personal sensibility and a particular attention to animals.

Animals occupy a prominent place in the canon, both by their presence on stage (one may here think of Crab, Lance’s dog in The Two Gentlemen of Verona or the bear in The Winter’s Tale) and in the reminiscence of the medieval world of heraldry and of the bestiaries, of hunting and sacrificial rites. In the historiae animalium of Aristotle, Pliny the Elder, Conrad Gesner or Edward Topsell, but also in the contemporary emblem books, Shakespeare and his fellow playwrights found many examples for his animal imagery as well as for various proverbs and ironical fables. Ovid’s Metamorphoses were another important source for the ass Bottom, the wolf Shylock, Orsino comparing himself to Acteon, Macbeth’s currish murderers, Lear’s ‘pelican daughters’ as well as Caliban, the fish-man of The Tempest. Desdemona and Othello, according to Iago, “are making the beast with two backs” and their “unnatural” love threatens Venice with a whole generation of monsters. But through its masks and many disguises, theatre encourages such metamorphoses, for laughs, but also in order to frighten the spectators or to give them food for thought, as in the case of De Flores’s dog face (in Middleton’s The Changeling) or the animal-coded names of the characters in Ben Jonson’s Volpone.

Is man “the paragon of animals” as Hamlet says to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in a fit of bitter irony? Beyond feelings of real compassion for the suffering, sentient beast which serve to illustrate melancholy or taedium vitae, animals are presented as possible models for man. In Henry V, the archbishop of Canterbury claims that honey-bees “teach / The act of order to a peopled kingdom”, while, for Cleopatra, the beauty and bounty of Antony is encapsulated in the image of the dolphin showing “his back above / The element”.

The word “beast”, which has 75 occurrences in the canon, differs from the word “animal” (only 8 occurrences) which etymologically refers to the breath of life (anima) responsible for motion. This raises the issue of taming and domestication, and thus that of the opposition between socialised and savage creatures. In The Taming of the Shrew, the Lord, who returns from a hunting party, takes loving care of his dogs while feeling nauseated by the sight of the drunken beggar Christopher Sly: “O monstrous beast, how like a swine he lies!” Shakespeare proves attentive to the singularity and diversity of individuals more than to the species or category to which they are supposed to belong, so that his animal kingdom leads to a dizzying multiplication of appellations as well as to great linguistic virtuosity. This world, for him, illustrates the idea of hierarchy and symbolises law and order as much as such subversive ends as Hamlet’s referring to the worm, “the only emperor for diet”, which, through the fish which it serves to catch, allows the beggar to eat of the flesh of the king.

The very same animals that are presented onstage as scenic objects or instruments at the service of living performances are also at the origin of the production of tools and objects of daily life. The drum, for instance, over which skins of goats, lambs, cows, fishes or reptiles had been stretched since early antiquity, retained in its emblems the characteristics of the animal used for its manufacturing. Contrary to this warlike instrument, the lute materialises the celestial power of harmony which elevates the soul and takes it closer to God. But with its strings made with animal guts and its tortoise-shaped sound-box, the instrument also connoted suspicious animal qualities, poles apart from the supernatural virtues attached to it.

This conference invites a vast range and variety of proposals on Shakespeare and his contemporaries. The following list, which by no means claims to be exhaustive, may serve to suggest possible topics and fields of investigation:

  • The role of animal heraldry;
  • The tradition of the fable and its subversion;
  • The hunt, its rites, vocabulary and imagery;
  • Domestication and savagery; domestic animals and wild beasts;
  • The function of metamorphosis; animals in the world of imagination, of the dream or of the unconscious; hybrids and fantastic beasts; esoteric lore and its chimeras;
  • Animal images of madness, possession and witchcraft;
  • The animal kingdom as related to climate and the environment;
  • The animalisation of man (and woman) and the humanisation of the animal;
  • Puns, terminology, insults, lexical and linguistic combinations in the field of the animal kingdom;
  • Meat consumption, slaughter and butchery; cruelty against vs. love of and pity for animals;
  • Animals in sports, games and festivities; animal imagery in popular riots, carnivals and the world upside down;
  • Animals as providing models or counter-models for social and political organisation; the animal kingdom as a mirror of law and order vs. the animal kingdom as image of chaos;
  • Classifications, inventories and hierarchies: from the king of animals to pest, from nobility to the ignoble, from the admirable to the frightening or the revolting;
  • Animality, bestiality, sexuality;
  • Objects related to the animal world: pelts, furs, objects made out of horn, fetishes, weapons, musical instruments;
  • Animals and music;
  • Animals on stage and on screen.

Submission Procedure

Please send your proposals to contact@societefrancaiseshakespeare.org by 10 May 2018, with a title, an abstract (between 500 and 800 words) and a brief biographical notice. A few words in the abstract should explain in what way(s) your paper intends to address the topic of the conference.


Conference website.

We invite participants from around the world to join us for the twelfth biennial ANZAMEMS Conference to be held in Sydney, Australia, 5-8 February 2019 at the Camperdown Campus of the University of Sydney. The theme for ANZAMEMS 2019 is Categories, Boundaries, Horizons. The call for papers will open in early 2018.

We are delighted to announce the following confirmed keynote speakers:

  • Associate Professor Seeta Chaganti (English, University of California – Davis)
  • Professor Jane Davidson (Music, Victorian College of the Arts and Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, University of Melbourne)
  • Associate Professor Yuen-Gen Liang (History, National Taiwan University)
  • Professor C.H. Lüthy (Philosophy, Radboud University)
  • Professor Elaine Treharne (English, Stanford University)

A two-day Postgraduate Advanced Training Seminar (PATS) will take place prior to the conference on 4-5 February 2019. Full details will become available in early 2018.


Deadline: April 15 2018

Proposals are invited for a two-day international symposium coinciding with the launch of the digital platform “Early Modern Songscapes” to be held 8-9 February 2019 at the University of Toronto’s Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies in Toronto, Canada.

We invite contributions from scholars of music, literature, theater, and digital humanities interested in “intermedia” approaches to sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English song and its performance—that is, methodologies that foreground points of connection between music, lyric, and performance, and their presentations and transformations across different media. Proposals could outline new ways of conceiving of song’s media and performance history, discuss formats or methodologies for curating song, reflect upon book history and media studies as they pertain to song, or consider the role of the digital humanities in scholarship on early modern song. The conference will incorporate a range of formats, including traditional paper sessions, roundtable discussions, and digital media presentations.Featured keynote speakers include Patricia Fumerton (Professor of English at the University of California, Santa Barbara), Whitney Trettien (Assistant Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania), and Amanda Eubanks Winkler (Associate Professor of Music History and Cultures at Syracuse University).

Formal presentations will be limited to 20 minutes each, and digital salon or poster session pieces may be on display for a longer period. Please indicate the desired format of your proposal and include a clear statement of its originality and significance. Proposals should not exceed 300 words and should include the following information: contributor’s full name and contact information, institutional affiliation, academic status, nationality, and any audio/visual requests.

Proposals should be sent via email in Word format by midnight EST on 15 April 2018 to the Program Committee at earlymodernsongscapes@gmail.com with the subject header “Early Modern Songscapes Proposal.”

Program Committee: Katherine Larson, University of Toronto; Scott Trudell, University of Maryland; and Sarah F. Williams, University of South Carolina.

The online platform “Early Modern Songscapes,” which will be launched at the conference in beta form, is co-developed by the University of Toronto Scarborough Library’s Digital Scholarship Unit and the University of Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities. It aims 1) to provide insight into song’s versatility in diverse textual and performance contexts; 2) to produce Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) and Music Encoding Initiative (MEI) editions of a selected corpus of early modern songs, together with audio and video recordings of those songs in performance; 3) to animate the acoustic and visual facets of early modern English song culture; and 4) to generate an interdisciplinary and collaborative hub for work on sixteenth- and seventeenth-century English songs.


University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 7-9 March 2019

The 94th Annual Meeting of the Medieval Academy of America will take place in Philadelphia on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. The meeting is jointly hosted by the Medieval Academy of America, Bryn Mawr College, Delaware Valley Medieval Association, Haverford College, St. Joseph’s University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Villanova University.

The Global Turn in Medieval Studies

Medievalists across various disciplines are taking a more geographically and methodologically global approach to the study of the Middle Ages. While the Organizing Committee invites proposals for papers on all topics and in all disciplines and periods of medieval studies, this year’s conference spotlights the “global turn” in medieval studies. To this end, we encourage session and paper proposals that treat the Middle Ages as a broad historical and cultural phenomenon, encompassing the full extent of Europe as well as the Middle East, southern and eastern Asia, Africa, and beyond.  We also invite proposals that explore departures from traditional teleological discourses rooted in national interests, ones that apply disciplinary and interdisciplinary methods to study a broad array of subjects.

We especially encourage proposals that provoke explorations of the following “big questions”:

1) Periodization and the drawing of geographic borders in medieval studies can be helpful, but can also limit our ability to make connections, see patterns, or entertain dialogue among specialists in individual sub-fields. What do we mean when we speak of the “Middle Ages” in geographic, temporal, or disciplinary terms? What do we mean when we use contemporary geographical concepts, such as Europe or Asia? What do we mean when we say “Global Middle Ages”? What is in and what is out?

2) If we are to turn away from national models, what is an alternative?  For instance, how can methodologies that highlight networks further our understanding of the “Global Middle Ages”? How might they contribute, for example, to understanding mechanisms of knowledge sharing and the development and use of religious, economic, and political systems?

3) Across all cultures in the medieval world, philosophers, theologians, scholars, healers, poets, artists, and musicians sought to understand the natural world and to apply that understanding to concrete ends. How do we make sense of their efforts? How might traditional paradigms of what we call “science,” philosophical inquiry, literary, and artistic practice be challenged?

4) Medieval studies has been at the forefront of the “digital turn” over the past few decades. How have digital approaches to scholarship altered the landscape for better or worse? In a global context, have new technologies broken barriers or created new ones? How do we create and evaluate digital scholarship in medieval studies vis à vis traditional methods?

Within the framework of these “big questions”, the organizing committee proposes the following threads:

  • Uses of the Medieval
  • Expanding Geographies of the Medieval
  • Re-thinking Periodization: Beyond Eurocentrism and Postcolonialism
  • Medieval Foundations of Contemporary Politics
  • Alexander the Great and World Thinking
  • Medieval Cosmologies
  • The Trojan Myth and Genealogies
  • What is Medieval/European/Literature?
  • Transmission and Technologies of Knowledge
  • Doing Science at Court
  • The Locations of Learning
  • Myths and Legends of Languages and Letters
  • Dante, Local and Global: Towards 2021
  • Deconstructing “National” Legal Traditions
  • Gender Matters
  • Ars/Arts: Intersections Across Disciplines and Borders
  • Global Manuscript Markets and Movements
  • Digitizing the Global Middle Ages: Practices, Sustainability, and Ethics
  • Approaches to Historiography
  • Interfaith Encounters, Real and Imagined
  • Religious and Cultural Ethics across Cultures: Conversation or Confrontation?
  • Saints and Sages
  • Words and Music


Individuals may propose a:

  • single paper for a listed thread
  • full session on a listed thread
  • single paper not designated for a specific thread
  • full session on a topic outside the listed threads
  • poster, paper, full session, or workshop that explores the role and uses of digital technologies

Sessions are 90 minutes long, and typically consist of three 20-minute papers. Proposals should be geared to that length. The committee is interested in other formats as well: poster sessions, roundtables, workshops, etc. The Program Committee may suggest a different format for some sessions after the proposals have been reviewed.

Any member of the Medieval Academy may submit a proposal; others may submit proposals as well but must become members in order to present papers at the meeting. Special consideration will be given to individuals whose field would not traditionally involve membership in the Medieval Academy.
In order to be considered, proposals must be complete and include the following:

(1) A cover sheet containing the proposer’s name, statement of Medieval Academy membership (or statement that the individual’s specialty would not traditionally involve membership in the Academy), professional status, email address, postal address, home or cell and office telephone numbers, fax number (if available), and paper title;

(2) A second sheet containing the proposer’s name, session for which the proposal should be considered, title, 250-word abstract, and audio-visual equipment requirements.

(3) Additional sheets as necessary containing all of the above information, plus a session abstract, when a full panel for a session is being proposed.

Submissions: Proposals should be submitted as attached PDFs to the MAA Program Committee by email to MAA2019@TheMedievalAcademy.org

The deadline is 15 June 2018.

Please do not send proposals directly to the Organizing Committee members.

Selection Procedure: Paper and panel proposals will be reviewed for their quality and for the significance and relevance of their topics. The Organizing Committee will evaluate proposals during the summer of 2018 and the Committee will inform all successful and unsuccessful proposers by 10 September 2018.

Organizing Committee Members

  • Lynn Ransom & Julia Verkholantsev, University of Pennsylvania (co-chairs)
  • Daud Ali, University of Pennsylvania
  • Chris Atwood, University of Pennsylvania
  • Kevin Brownlee, University of Pennsylvania
  • Mary Caldwell, University of Pennsylvania
  • Linda Chance, University of Pennsylvania
  • Paul M. Cobb, University of Pennsylvania
  • Catherine Conybeare, Bryn Mawr College
  • Talya Fishman, University of Pennsylvania
  • Fr. Allan Fitzgerald, Villanova University
  • Scott Francis, University of Pennsylvania
  • Nicholas Herman, University of Pennsylvania
  • Tom Izbicki, Rutgers University & Delaware Valley Medieval Association
  • Ada Kuskowski, University of Pennsylvania
  • Ann Matter, University of Pennsylvania
  • Maud McInerney, Haverford College
  • Paul Patterson, St. Joseph’s University
  • Montserrat Piera, Temple University
  • Dot Porter, University of Pennsylvania
  • Jerry Singerman, University of Pennsylvania Press
  • Emily Steiner, University of Pennsylvania
  • Eva del Soldato, University of Pennsylvania
  • Elly Truitt, Bryn Mawr College
  • David Wallace, University of Pennsylvania (ex officio as MAA president)


Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, BC, Canada,  April 11-13 2019

IONA: Seafaring is a three-day international conference on the islands of the North Atlantic that brings together scholars of early medieval Ireland, Britain, and Scandinavia to imagine cooperative, interdisciplinary futures for the study of North Atlantic archipelagos during the early medieval period. The conference will be held at Simon Fraser University at the downtown campus in Vancouver, BC, April 11-13, 2019.

Designed less around traditional conference presentations and more as a “workspace,” IONA: Seafaring is designed to provide time and space for nascent and developing work, intellectual risk-taking, collaboration and cooperation. In addition to workshops, seminars and labs, three plenary themes with speakers and workshops will shape the conference; our tentatively slated plenary speakers are indigenous studies/medieval studies with Abraham Anghik Ruben, an artist whose work fuses Inuit story and Old Norse myth; Nicola Griffiths, award-winning novelist of Hild (2013), set in seventh-century Britain; and Elaine Treharne, the Roberta Bowman Denning Professor of Humanities, Professor of English, and Director of Stanford’s Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis whose work is in book history, text technologies and early English and Welsh literature. With its non-traditional formats and inclusive experimental approaches, IONA: Seafaring aims to forge reciprocal connections between artists and scholars in contemporary art and poetics, indigenous studies, and new media, broadening, complicating, and enriching those fields in counterpoint to academic work in early medieval North Atlantic studies. These kinds of networks between early medievalists, and between early medieval studies and other disciplines can give scholars foundations to build robust and productive new knowledge in the field and reshape its role in the contemporary academy, society, and politics.

We invite proposals for (at least) three kinds of sessions: seminars, labs, and workshops (not paper proposals at this stage). These sessions will meet for two days of the conference in order to foster extended discussion. These sessions will be designed to develop competencies and skills, enrich interdisciplinary and comparative methods, and widen geographic and temporal scope for early medievalists.

  • Seminars will take up a specific focus on an issue, question, methodology, or problem and consist of a group of around 8 to 12 scholars, sharing work on the seminar’s focus. Organizers will circulate their own CFP for their seminar (but we at IONA will help!), and choose their own participants
  • Labs will put scholars into conversation to test out new theoretical engagements, methods, or approaches. An organizer might want to assign an instrumental text beforehand or ask participants to take on a particular kind of methodological or theoretical angle to produce a collaborative learning experience and opportunities for discovery. Organizer of a lab may want to select or solicit participants with a CFP of their own
  • Workshops will be run by an expert in a particular competency - eg early medieval palaeography or critical race theory or Old Norse as a kind of bootcamp for scholars in the field. These could include active learning, a tutorial on a subject, or a masterclass in a particular skill

For all three, organizers will have complete autonomy in organizing their session, from soliciting proposals to running the seminars. For all three of these kinds of sessions, organizers may wish to ask participants to pre-circulate materials. The conference is open to other types of session proposals as well.

To propose a seminar, workshop or lab, please send a 250-word proposal to Matt Hussey (mhussey@sfu.ca) by March 15, 2018.

The conference is subject to several grant applications, but the current plan is to make funding available to session organizers.


McGill University, April 13-15 2019

Conference website

“Angelical Conjunction” was the term coined by the seventeenth-century New England Puritan Cotton Mather to denote the mutual affinity of medicine and religion. Indeed, medical and spiritual practices have a long history of coexistence in many religious traditions. This connection took many forms, from the pious provision of health care (in person or through endowed charity), to the archetypal figure of the healing prophet. Yet despite decades of specialized research, a coherent and analytical history of the “angelical conjunction” itself remains elusive. This conference therefore aims to explore the connection between medicine and religion across the time-span of the late medieval and early modern eras, and& from an intercultural perspective. Taking as our focus the Mediterranean, the Islamic World and Europe, and the various Christianities, Islams and Judaisms that flourished there, we aim to develop methodological and theoretical perspectives on the “angelical conjunction(s)” of these two spheres. How did the entanglement of religion and medicine shape epistemologies in both of these spheres? What are the conceptions of the body and its relationship to the soul that these entanglements assumed or envisioned? What were the limits to coexistence? How did the “conjunction” change over time?

We invite papers on a range of themes that include, but are not limited to:

  • The relationship between spiritual charisma and medical practice
  • The involvement of medical practitioners in theological debates
  • Medicine and “fringe” religious traditions (eg Hermetic, heretical, “occult”…)
  • Representations of the healer-prophet or healer-saint in art
  • Debates on body and soul informed by medical and theological knowledge
  • Spiritualization of physical illness
  • Devotion as therapy, and (the provision of) therapy as devotion

Accommodation and meals will be provided. We are seeking grant support to subsidize travel.

Please submit an abstract of 300 words and a CV to Dr Aslıhan Gürbüzel at angelicalconjunctions@gmail.com by January 10, 2018.