The Henri Peyre French Institute Food Seminar: SALT, December 5th Colloquium at The Graduate Center of CUNY

Due: 31 October 2014

Generally viewed as the ultimate dietary malefactor in contemporary Western cultures, salt has adopted many meanings and held many functions in a long historical period, both in the West and in lands impacted by Western colonialism. France is no exception in that respect.

As the first section of the Henri Peyre French Institute’s six-semester series on Food and Foodstuffs in the French and Francophone worlds (Food, Power, Exchange and Identity: Food and Foodstuffs in the French and Francophone Worlds), the Fall 2014 Seminar on Salt includes online visual exhibits and an online forum and culminates in a full-day colloquium on December 5, 2014.

The December 5th Colloquium at The Graduate Center of CUNY seeks to bring together scholars who are currently working on any aspect of SALT in French cuisine, gastronomy, food culture, economics, political and social history, and the arts. Rather than the traditional “conference paper,” we encourage fifteen-minute presentations of ongoing work, especially those including digital components, although full papers are also welcome as long as they fit the time limit. The seminar’s work is open to any time period, from medieval and early modern to the contemporary world.

The seminar seeks to provide a forum to present work, test hypotheses, and exchange conclusions with other scholars interested in examining the place of SALT in French and Francophone cultures within a distinctly interdisciplinary framework. The seminar’s one-day colloquium should bring together literary scholars and social historians with art historians, anthropologists, sociologists, specialists of political economy, and researchers working at the confluence of the sciences and the humanities. The colloquium will also honor the groundbreaking work of the late Claude Gaignebet, a distinguished French ethnologist, on the symbolic and ritual meanings of salt in early modern and folk cultures.

Culinary uses of salt have impacted the way that French food has developed into its own particular style between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries. Its presence and dosage in food and food cultures are also of considerable importance in the Caribbean and other areas of the “Francophone” reach. Salt’s early functions range from medical applications to its indispensable role in the preservation of meat and fish. Satirical themes in literature evoked the combination of heavy drinking with consumption of salty foods, and, well before Reformation attacks on the theology of Lent, took aim at the wretched foods imposed by the Lenten diet. The development and exploitation of salt marshes in several regions of France had a profound impact on local economies and cultures: Protestant investment in such enterprises in early modern Western France adds an intriguing dimension to the social history of religious strife in the 16th and 17th centuries. The French monarchy’s much reviled tax on salt was a significant factor in early modern unrest up to the Revolution. Salts of different origins also were present in early industrial applications and the development of distinctive methods to process salt has local economic and cultural implications. Salt was precious enough to warrant containment in special and valuable vessels. Salt’s symbolic implications have informed hermetic doctrines, literature and art in myriad ways into the modern period…Salt is ubiquitous, familiar, ordinary, complex, and mysterious…

Themes and topics might include, but are not at all limited to, the following:

The symbolic uses of salt in art or literature.

The symbolic registers of Salt and saltiness in interpreting food culture.

Salt in regional or Francophone cuisines.

Imagery and discourses on the excess of saltiness in the food regimen of Lent.

The culinary and/or symbolic function of salt in the preserving of foods.

Representations of the relation of salt and wine, especially in late medieval and early modern texts.

Salt, culinary registers, and the health regimen.

Salt in early medicine. Salt in alchemical treatises and practices.

Salt in material culture; objects that preserve and/or present it

The salt industry in French history, especially in local economies and communities. “Villes de sel” in French cultural history. The “route du sel” between Hyeres and Torino.

Saltmarshes and salt works in local economies, especially in the early modern period, and especially in the Western regions of France and in the Aigues-Mortes area. The role of Protestants in operating such salt production centers.

The hated gabelle or salt tax. Local conflicts over the control and trade of salt.

Salt production: processing and immigration.

Industrial applications of salt and different types of salts in early industry, such as the dying of textiles.

Salt extraction enforced by French colonial authorities.

Religious and Ritual uses of salt. For instance, but not limited to: Salt in hospitality or funerary rites. Salt and conjuring. Belief that ingesting salt frees the zonbi and allows return of the soul (Haiti).

Please send a brief abstract (or description of your ongoing work) on any aspect of the theme of salt) no longer than one page, accompanied by a current CV, to the Henri Peyre French institute (http://www.henripeyrefrenchinstitute.org/contact.php) by October 31. Responses to submissions will be sent out within two weeks. The languages of communication are English and French. If you are coming from outside of the New York City area, please inform us of any urgent travel needs.

For more information on the three-year Food seminar, please visit the Henri Peyre French Institute’s website at

http://www.henripeyrefrenchinstitute.org/events-programs/2014/food-and-foodstuff/index.php


Negotiating Spectacle, Saturday, March 7, 2015, Tufts University, Medford, MA

Due: October 31, 2014

It has been almost 50 years since Guy Debord wrote The Society of the Spectacle and thinkers after him have given various iterations of the influential concept of “spectacle.” Can we extend those arguments regarding the role of spectacle in the creation (or destruction?), dissemination, consumption of visual culture from antiquity to the present? How does spectacle negotiate between entertainment and mass distraction, education and propaganda, or globalism and alienation? The 2015 Tufts University Art History Graduate Symposium invites participants to consider how critical theory shapes historical interpretations of spectacular objects in specific contexts. We encourage submissions that consider how individual artists or institutions use material and visual culture to manipulate audiences through spectacle, as well as the audience responses produced. Explorations in all media, geographic regions, and time periods are encouraged. Submissions that offer contributions to art history, visual culture, literature, cultural studies, and related fields are all welcome.

Paper topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Displays of capitalism, materialism, or commodity fetishism (e.g. art market/auctions, international art fairs)

  • The role of spectacle in time-based mediums such as performance and performance art, film, television, dance, and theater

  • Politics of display or subversion of power and control

  • Cult of relics, idols, mysticism, and fetishism of art objects

  • Visual cultures of conquest and colonization (e.g. cabinets of curiosity or World’s Fairs)

  • Exotic materials and their contextualization (e.g. ivory, gold, or silk)

  • Globalism, global citizenship, and its discontents

  • Reinterpreting phenomena of ‘spectacle,’ ‘gestalt,’ and ‘aura’ in critical theory

We invite graduate students in art history and related disciplines to submit a 300-word abstract for a twenty-minute presentation, along with a current CV by October 31, 2014.

All applicants will receive notification of the committee’s decision by December 1, 2014.

The symposium will be held on the Medford Campus of Tufts University on Sunday, March 7, 2015.

All questions and submissions should be sent to tuftsartsymposium@gmail.com


Concilium Lateranense IV: Commemorating the Octocentenary of the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215, Rome, 24-29 November 2015

Due: November 1, 2014

On Monday 30 November 1215 in the Basilica of St John Lateran, Innocent III brought the first assembly of the whole Church since the Council of Chalcedon (451) to a rousing finale by summoning all the delegates to unite in faith and by issuing Ad Liberandam, an encyclical calling for a crusade to liberate the Holy Land. This Council, fourth in the Lateran series but the twelfth ecumenical gathering of the Church in the Western tradition, included the five patriarchs or their representatives, together with more than one thousand bishops, abbots and other dignitaries, both ecclesiastical and secular. At each of the three plenary sessions held on 11, 20 and 30 November respectively, Innocent preached a set-piece sermon whilst, behind the scenes, delegates debated such major issues as who was more worthy to lead the Empire and how to contain the Albigensian heresy.

The accounts of eyewitnesses reveal that Innocent’s consecration of Santa Maria in Trastevere and celebrations for the anniversary of the dedication of the Vatican Basilica served not only to emphasize the history, majesty and ritual of the Church but also offered a welcome respite from the intensive discussions in the Lateran Palace. The Fathers of the Council promulgated seventy decrees, covering topics as diverse as heresy, Jewish-Christian relations, pastoral care and Trinitarian theology as well as ecclesiastical governance. Monks and secular clergy were to be reformed, the nascent mendicant orders welcomed to the Church and diocesan bishops instructed to implement far-reaching conciliar decisions across Christendom.

Eight hundred years on, Lateran IV still stands as the high-water mark of the medieval papacy, its political and ecclesiastical decisions enduring down to the Council of Trent whilst modern historiography has deemed it the most significant papal assembly of the Later Middle Ages. In November 2015, we have a unique opportunity to re-evaluate the role of this Council in the reform of the universal Church. Taking an inter-disciplinary approach, we shall investigate how its decisions affected the intellectual, cultural, social and religious life of the medieval world. We particularly encourage individual papers from disciplines such as art history, theology, canon law, crusade studies, literature and from those who work on relations between Jews and Christians, which we hope will broaden current interpretations of the events of the Council, their subsequent importance and long-term impact. Alternatively, three-paper session proposals on a common theme will also be most welcome.

Papers may be delivered in English, French, German, Italian or Spanish but must be limited to 30 minutes. Abstracts of no more than 200 words with all the necessary contact details should be sent no later than 1 November 2014. See www.lateraniv.com.

Please direct any questions to fourthlateranat800@gmail.com.


“Cities and Citizens,” Durham University, 13-15 July 2015
Due: November 1, 2014

Durham’s Centre for Seventeenth-Century Studies – now part of the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies – has, since its foundation in 1985, organized over a dozen high-profile international conferences. Next year’s conference will address the topic of ‘Cities and Citizens’ and will focus on the ways in which urban centres were perceived, experienced, understood and represented in the ‘long seventeenth century’ (c.1580-1720). The conference will be held within the UNESCO World Heritage Site on Palace Green in the heart of the medieval city of Durham.

The built environment of the city was represented in cartography, painting, printed images and in literary and dramatic works. What were the physical and sensory characteristics of the urban environment? How did the material form of the city change? Especially important here is architectural form – civic, ecclesiastical, official and vernacular. How did urban and rural people read the urban landscape? Here we hope to draw on the insights of archaeological theory as well as on recent findings in post-medieval urban archaeology.

The distinctiveness of the urban experience will be explored. What were the effects of inter-urban trade and of trade and migration between town and countryside? What were the economics of urbanization? In what ways did urban labour differ from that in rural communities and how was it regulated? How did urban people understand customary law and access to common resources? How did civic remembrance connect with popular memory? How did religious conflict change cities and in what ways were confessional identities inflected by the urban experience?

Special emphasis will be placed upon the idea and practice of citizenship. Who did this term include and who was left out? In what ways were ideas about citizenship inflected by nationality, ethnicity, belief, class, gender, property, skill, schooling and age? How far were early modern ideas about citizenship reflective of classical ideals, and how did they connect to those of the late medieval period? To what extent did citizenship guarantee inclusion within the urban polity, and what rights and obligations came with that inclusion? In what ways did those excluded from citizenship nonetheless participate in the urban polity?

We invite proposals either for single papers or for 3-paper panels. Papers should last for 20 minutes, with half an hour at the end of each panel for discussion. Panels may be specific to a particular town or city, or might be national or international in scope, including New World urban centres. Potential subjects might include (but are not restricted to):

· Defining towns, cities and urban communities
· The urban environment and the urban landscape
· Perceptions of space and time
· Gender, age, household and citizenship
· Social relations and social conflicts
· Crime, authority, resistance and the law
· Civic identities and vernacular urban cultures
· Urban customary rights and common resources
· Urban political cultures and public spheres
· Work and leisure
· Print, literacy and education
· Cities and international trade and exchange
· Fuelling and feeding the city
· Migration and social mobility
· Urban parish identities and patterns of belief
· Monastic houses, cathedrals and religious authority
· Occupations, social structures and demographics
· Disease, famine, medicine, and social policy
· Siege warfare
· Urban revolt
· Art, architecture and civic portraiture

Proposals for 20-minute papers and full panels should be submitted to early.modern@durham.ac.uk by 1 November 2014. Replies will be sent in early December 2014. Details concerning travel and accommodation for both speakers and delegates will be made available around the same time. It is hoped that the conference will give rise to an edited volume of selected essays.


Vagantes Medieval Graduate Student Conference, February 19-21, 2015 at the University of Florida

Due: 3 November 2014 

Vagantes, North America’s largest graduate student conference for medieval studies, is seeking submissions for its 2015 meeting at the University of Florida, February 19-21.

Since its founding in 2002, Vagantes has nurtured a lively community of junior scholars from across the disciplines. Every conference features thirty papers on any aspect of medieval studies, allowing for exciting interdisciplinary conversation and the creation of new professional relationships between future colleagues. Vagantes travels to a new university every year, highlighting the unique resources of the host institution through keynote lectures, exhibitions, and special events. Out of consideration for graduate students’ limited budgets, Vagantes never charges a registration fee.

The 2015 conference will feature exciting keynotes. Dr. Linda Neagley, of Rice University, will open the conference with: ‘Architectural counterpoint: Juxtaposition & opposition as a visual strategy in the Late Middle Ages.’ Dr. Nina Caputo of the University of Florida will close with a discussion of the unique challenge of transforming medieval history into a graphic novel. The conference will also feature an exhibition of medieval bestiaries: ‘The Beast in the Book,’ presented by Dr. Rebecca Jefferson of the Isser and Rae Price Library of Judaica, and a roundtable session with University of Florida faculty on teaching the middle ages from a global perspective.

Several travel awards will be granted to the best papers in Jewish, Byzantine, and women’s studies. See the Vagantes website for further details: www.vagantesconference.org/travel-awards/ .

Graduate students in all disciplines are invited to submit a 300-word abstract on any medieval topic along with a 1-2 page C.V. to organizers@vagantesconference.org by November 3, 2014.


Medieval Thought Experiments: Poetry and Speculation in Europe, 1100-1450
Due: 10 November 2014

Monday 13 & Tuesday 14 April 2015
New College, Oxford
www.medievalthoughtexperiments.com
Keynote speakers: Prof. Vincent Gillespie (Oxford), Prof. John Marenbon (Cambridge)

In the high and late Middle Ages, fictional frameworks could be used as imaginative spaces in which to test or play with ideas without necessarily asserting their truth. The aim of this conference is to consider how intellectual problems were approached – if not necessarily resolved – through the kinds of hypothetical enquiry found in poetry and other kinds of fictive texts. We hope to encourage an exploration of the relationship between poetry and speculation and the medieval understanding of speculatio, and we use the anachronistic term ‘thought experiment’ to provoke particular debate around two related questions:

(i)       to what extent can hypothetical and speculative texts be understood as ‘experiments’, as frames within which ideas can be tested rather than necessarily asserted?

(ii)   how far can speculation be understood not merely as an intellective process, but also as something affective and sensitive? In this respect we draw on both meanings of the medieval Latin experientia: not just ‘experiment’, but also ‘experience’.

We welcome papers that consider why a writer might choose a fictional or hypothetical frame to discuss theoretical questions, how a text’s truth content is affected and shaped by its fictive nature, or what kind of affective or intellectual work is required to read a speculative text. We hope that this conference will explore what happens to theoretical truth-claims in a wide range of hypothetical texts – allegorical dream-visions (such as the Romance of the Rose or Piers Plowman) as much as philosophical dialogues (such as those of Peter Abelard and Ramon Llull).

This conference aims to bring together scholars working across the spectrum of medieval languages and academic disciplines, including (but not limited to) literary studies, intellectual history, philosophy, and theology.

Papers may wish to consider some of the following questions:

Kinds of Meaning. How do fictional frames generate meaning, and how is this influenced by genre, mode, or context?
Space. What rules govern the imagined spaces of medieval thought experiments, and what issues do spaces raise?
Truth and lies. How are philosophical fictions used, abused, or condemned? When is it acceptable to lie in order to arrive at truth?
Imagination and intellect. What kinds of knowledge are accessible via different mental faculties?
Speculatio, speculum. specula How is the act of speculation represented or described in medieval texts, and how does this relate to the senses, in particular to sight?

Please submit abstracts for papers of up to 20 minutes in length to medievalthoughtexperiments+proposals@gmail.com by 10 November 2014.

The registration fee for this conference will be £60, with an optional dinner in New College on the Monday evening at an additional cost (to be confirmed).
Please note that there will be a small number of travel bursaries available for graduate students and early career researchers giving papers at the conference (up to a value of £200). When you submit your abstract, please state if you would like to be considered for a travel bursary.

Enquiries can be directed to the organizers at medievalthoughtexperiments+enquiries@gmail.com.


“The International Christopher Marlowe, “University of Exeter, 7th – 8th September 2015

Due: 14 November 2014

Keynote speaker: Professor Alan Stewart (Columbia)

Much current and historical scholarship has tended to consider Marlowe’s plays, poems and translations from an English cultural and literary perspective. With one or two exceptions, his connections to the thought and literature of non-English cultures have been less thoroughly explored, even as scholars have begun to examine the highly cosmopolitan, multi-lingual character of English literary production and consumption during the 1580s and 1590s.

To what extent was Marlowe an ‘international’ writer? In what ways did his work absorb, respond to, imitate or challenge literary, dramatic and intellectual trends in France, Spain, Italy, the Holy Roman Empire, the Netherlands, Turkey or further afield? What role, if any, has the reception of his work played in non-English-speaking cultures?

We invite proposals for papers of up to 30 minutes on any aspect of the “international” content or contexts of Marlowe and his work. Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words to E.J.Paleit@exeter.ac.uk or N.Williams@exeter.ac.uk by 14th November 2014. We also welcome any queries at this address.

Organisers:   Dr. Edward Paleit, Nora Williams (University of Exeter)

Project website: christophermarlowe.exeter.ac.uk


Cornell University–Medieval Studies Student Colloquium “Order and Disorder in the Middle Ages” Saturday, February 7, 2015

Due: 20 November 2014

The graduate students of Cornell’s Medieval Studies Program are pleased to announce their twenty-fifth annual Student Colloquium. The Colloquium will take place Saturday, February 7th at the A.D. White House on campus. We look forward to a keynote lecture from Professor Nino Zchomelidse from John Hopkins University, entitled “The Place of Ritual in the Visual Culture(s) of Medieval Southern Italy.” All attendees are invited to dinner with Professor Zchomelidse on Friday before the conference and Saturday afterwards.
We are seeking proposals for 20-minute presentations on the theme of “Order and Disorder in the Middle Ages” (though submissions pertaining to any aspect of medieval studies are welcome). Topics that presentations might cover include, but are not limited to: structure in manuscripts, laws and enforcement, sacred or secular rituals, ritual in art and performance, chaos and violence, monastic culture and religious orders, cultures of reading, madness, political dissidence, patriotism, poetics and form, narrative control, heterodoxy, liminality and borders, and civilization or barbarians.

Please send 200-word abstracts to John Wyatt Greenlee at jwg239@cornell.edu by November 20, 2015.


Interdisciplinary graduate student conference: “Medieval Ethics and Aesthetics: The Good and the Beautiful?”  February 20-21, 2015,  University of California, Berkeley

Due: 20 November 2014

Keynote: Alex Novikoff, Forham University

In The Sense of the Song of Roland (1987), Robert F. Cook suggests that this well-known chanson de geste “should be read as certain other works of art of its time are ‘read,’ as an ethical statement, embodying values in a framework that is no less aesthetically satisfying for all that it conveys ideas. Recognizing its power means admitting that our ancestors may have been moved, even excited, by ideals whose aesthetic status is greatly diminished today.” (130)
The Middle Ages has suffered from a double-edged stereotype: on the one hand, it has been considered a time when didacticism and dogma flourished at the expense of art and aesthetics; on the other hand, it has been viewed as a period without any significant advances in the philosophy of ethics. These one-dimensional notions of medieval aesthetics and ethics have collapsed in recent years under the weight of new work dealing with the nexus between these two branches of philosophy and their material manifestations in medieval texts and objects. Innovative critics have teased out the sometimes surprising ways in which medieval art in all media could perform ethical work; the imbrication of ethics and form in the medieval discipline of rhetoric is already well-known, but is enjoying new attention. This conference invites a conversation about the varied ways in which a concern with ethics – however that may have been construed at different times and places throughout the period– entered into a fruitful relationship with artistic production. It looks, in short, to discover the manifold ways in which medieval artists, thinkers, and writers reconciled “The Good” and “The Beautiful.”

We wish to throw this conversation open to emerging scholars across the disciplines, including those whose work falls outside of standard conceptions of “the medieval”– that is, outside the Latin West.

Questions addressed might include, but will not be limited to:

· The context and formal strategies of didactic art, such as allegorical pieces;
· Medieval debates about the ethical status of art, particularly secular aesthetic production;
· Contradictions (or congruities) between medieval theory and medieval praxis;
· The development of new models of aesthetic production in the vernacular;
· Prescriptive codes of conduct in secular or religious contexts (for example, chivalry/courtliness, debates about clothing and fashion, or grammatical treatises), and subversion or flaws in performance of these;
· The evocation of these categories in constructing modern medievalisms.

Submit abstracts of no more than 500 words to medieval.ethics.aesthetics@gmail.com by November 20, 2014.


“Telling Tales: Manuscripts, Books and the Making of Narrative,” Biennial conference of the Early Book Society, University of Oxford, July 2-5, 2015

Due 30 November 2014

The conference will take place from lunchtime on Thursday 2 July 2015 to early afternoon on Sunday 5 July 2015. Abstracts of 300 words or fewer for 20-minute presentations should be sent to the organizers by 30 November 2014 to the conference e-mail address earlybooksoc2015@ell.ox.ac.uk.   Abstracts should include your name, affiliation (where relevant) and email address. Computers and data-projectors will be available for all sessions; speakers would need to bring presentations on a memory stick / USB plug-in device. People who have other AV needs should specify this on their abstract.
The theme, which may be interpreted narrowly or broadly, invites special attention to the material records of different genres of narrative, such as verse, romance, chronicle, biography or history. It might consider the ways that manuscripts, printed books and other media serve a narrative function: whether page layouts were modified for chronicles and annals, whether collections of documents were compiled to tell stories, whether images in books are important components of storytelling, whether poems on monuments recount lives.
The topic also invites participants to tell different kinds of stories about early books. In particular, we may reflect on our storytelling as scholars. What is the role of biography – of the author, of the ‘celebrity’ scribe, of the idiosyncratic reader – in the study of early books? How sure can we be of cause and effect, of chronology and dating, of different kinds of paleographical, codicological and bibliographical evidence, in studying these books? Are history and narrative the best models for ‘book history’ or might studies of manuscript and print serve literary criticism, linguistics or philology in other ways?
Finally, papers which concern books in or around Oxford are also encouraged. But, in general, proposals for papers on any aspect of the history of manuscripts and printed books from 1350 to 1550, including the copying and circulation of models and exemplars, style, illustration, and/or the influence of readers and patrons, artists, scribes, printers, are welcome. The website with details of registration and accommodation will go live later this winter and will be announced on the EBS listserv and also on the EBS website http://www.nyu.edu/projects/EBS


“Shakespeare’s Unsung Heroes and Heroines, ”Shakespeare Seminar at the Annual Conference of the German Shakespeare Society, Berlin, 23-26 April 2015

Due: 30 November 2014

Without Paulina and Antigonus there would be no reunion, however tainted, between Leontes and Hermione, and there would be no union of Perdita and Florizel in The Winter’s Tale. In a sense, then, Paulina and Antigonus are the unsung heroine and hero of the play. Undoubtedly, Antigonus’ exit pursued by a bear is not typical of a tragic hero. Taking Antigonus melodramatic exit as an example, Sir Walter Raleigh, then Professor of English Literature at Oxford, famously complained in 1907 that Shakespeare disposed of his minor characters “in the most unprincipled and reckless fashion.”
In this seminar we would like to explore heroic qualities in Shakespeare’s ‘minor’ characters, and thus equally revisit preconceived notions about the status of these minor characters as well as traditional concepts of the (tragic) hero. What did Shakespeare’s contemporaries make, for example, of Enobarbus deserting Antony and then dying of grief when confronted with Antony’s generosity and Octavius’ cynicism? Was Enobarbus a tragic hero in the eyes of contemporary audiences of Antony and Cleopatra? Do we see him as a tragic hero? What about the minor female characters? Are Ophelia and Lady Anne, for instance, the tragic heroines of Hamlet and Richard III? Considering heroic qualities in Shakespeare’s minor characters can help bring into focus changing attitudes to heroism and hero worship. At the same time, this perspective also allows for probing into more fundamental dramatic and literary conventions: how ‘minor’ are minor characters in Shakespeare’s plays? Does poetic justice only appertain to the great? Which concepts of heroism can we use to take account of marginal characters in the comedies and romances? Which role do categories such as gender and race play in our / the early modern conception of what is ‘heroic’? Which methods (genre theory, network theory, New Historicism) are productive tools to analyse Shakespeare’s minor characters? How have theatrical and filmic adaptations dealt with Shakespeare’s unsung heroes and heroines?
Our seminar plans to address these and related questions with a panel of six papers during the annual conference of the German Shakespeare Association, Shakespeare-Tage (23-26 April 2015 in Berlin), which will focus on “Shakespeare’s Heroes and Heroines.” As critical input for the discussion and provocation for debate, panellists are invited to give short statements on the basis of pre-circulated papers presenting concrete case studies, concise examples and strong views on the topic. Please send your proposals (abstracts of 300 words) and all further questions by 30 November 2014 to the seminar convenors:
Felix Sprang, Humboldt University, Berlin: felix.sprang@hu-berlin.de
Christina Wald, University of Konstanz: christina.wald@uni-konstanz.de
See also: http://shakespeare-gesellschaft.de/publikationen/seminar.html


Scrutinizing Surfaces in Early Modern Thought: The Second Northern Renaissance Roses Seminar
8-9 May 2015
Due: 30 November 2014

Keynote speakers
Dr Helen Smith (University of York)
Professor Richard Wistreich (Royal College of Music, London).
Run jointly by the universities of Lancaster and York, this interdisciplinary seminar takes up and develops Joseph Amato’s trans-historical investigation of how ‘humans, ourselves a body of surfaces, meet and interact with a world dressed in surfaces’ (2013: xv) in the early modern period. We will consider the topic broadly, addressing such questions as:

  • What kinds of surfaces are prevalent in early modern thought?
  • How might surfaces be viewed as a threshold between actor and spectator, writer and reader, teacher and student?
  • What is the relationship between animate and inanimate surfaces?
  • How are surfaces theorized in the early modern period?
  • Is sound a surface?
  • What kinds of interplay exist between early-modern photology and surfaces?
  • How do twenty-first century theoretical perspectives engage with early modern surfaces?

The seminar will take place in the Storey, Lancaster City Centre and the Regimental Chapel, Lancaster Priory, and will feature a recital of early-modern music by Lancaster Priory’s Choir.

Funded by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Lancaster, ‘Scrutinizing Surfaces in Early Modern Thought’ particularly encourages early career scholars and post-graduates working in any Renaissance discipline.

Please send abstracts (c. 250 words) and a brief CV to Kevin Killeen (kevin.killeen@york.ac.uk) and Liz Oakley-Brown (e.oakley-brown@lancaster.ac.uk): deadline 30 November 2014)


Call for Sessions, 20th Biennial Congress of the New Chaucer Society, London, 10-15 July 2016

Due: 1 December 2014

The NCS Program Committee for the 2016 Congress taking place in London has determined that this program will comprise two kinds of sessions: sessions tied to particular thematic threads (see below) and independent (“open”) sessions. We invite proposals for sessions of either type with a deadline of December 1, 2014. All proposals should be sent to ncsproposals@slu.edu.

A session proposal should include a brief description of the session (approx. 100 words), the intended thread affiliation (if any), and an indication of its format. It should also contain a short bio of the proposer (2-3 sentences).

Sessions may be proposed in the following formats: paper panels, roundtables, seminars, or poster sessions. A brief description of each genre of session can be found below the thread descriptions. Please note that each thread will contain sessions of each type. We also encourage members to submit sessions on pedagogy, particularly in relation to thread topics.

After these sessions and their organizers have been established, a general call for individual papers and posters will go out to the membership in early February 2015. Members may submit proposals to no more than two sessions, of different types.

Please note that we are asking for proposals to the call below (and attached) to be sent to a dedicated email account so that we can keep track of every single proposal: ncsproposals@slu.edu. Make sure you send your proposals there!

Threads

1. London: Books, Texts, Lives (organized by Bruce Holsinger and Marion Turner)

This thread will examine the many roles of London – as city and spectacle, as site and sight, as inspiration and mental landscape – in shaping literary culture and artistic imagining, both in Chaucer’s world and in our own. Sessions might explore theories of space and place; relations among bodies, texts, and city spaces; urban and domestic built environments; the life of things in the city and its texts; the senses and the city; cognitive approaches to space; London books, scribal culture and urban reading communities; urban geography and physical boundaries (walls, the river, Southwark and Westminster, wards and parishes); the afterlives of London in literature, culture, and the arts.

2. Medieval Media (organized by Will Robins and Katherine Zieman)

Media Studies has been a fast-growing field in the humanities, with inquiries tending to focus on mass media forms of communication prominent in late modern culture. Yet many intriguing innovations in media theory move away from modern gadgetry to consider more broadly how information is constituted and how it moves within systems, complicating simple notions of agency and materiality. Medieval Studies has much to offer scholars in these fields, who often think only as far back as print. Within Medieval Studies, questions about media provide opportunities for new dialogues among manuscript studies, literary theory, visual studies, textual criticism, linguistics, cognition, and literacy studies. This thread invites consideration of the phenomena of medieval media (manuscript books, performances, images, sounds, etc.) or post-medieval media (print, digitization) in light of ecologies and processes of perception, communication, circulation, cognition, and participation, including the material, aesthetic, and socio-cultural dynamics such processes reveal.

3. Error (organized by Anthony Bale and Steven Kruger)

Proposals for sessions on the theme of Error, including but not limited to: erroneous groups, such as Jews, “Saracens,” and heretics; interfaith perspectives on error; erroneous “races” and bodies; error in relation to queerness, sexuality, and the normal; mistranslation, misattribution, and misinterpretation in medieval texts; doctrinal error, correction, and censorship; the detection and definition of error (as opposed to heresy); cultures of purgatory and self-reform; erroneous and exemplary behavior in hagiography and conduct literature; artistic representations of inappropriate or transgressive behavior; literary culture as a stage for error and its regulation; scribal error, errors in Chaucerian manuscripts; and printer’s errors; Dantean error and Spenser’s Error; erroneous post-medieval understanding of medieval texts; our own scholarly errors: “getting it right,” embracing error within our methodologies, and positing alternatives to positivistic scholarship.

4. Scientiae (organized by Kellie Robertson and D. Vance Smith)

Since Foucault, we have assumed that practices of knowledge are necessarily practices of power. But what practices underlay medieval theories of knowledge? This thread offers opportunities for examining the pressures under which late medieval epistemologies flourished as well as how individual disciplines self-consciously imagined their own modernity. Sessions might address: scientific taxonomies, natural and moral philosophies, visual geographies, medieval humanisms, religious and mystical frames of experience, skepticism, institutions and the schematization of power, secularization and sacralization of knowledges, and the discursive formation of sovereignty. Taken as a whole, these sessions would contribute to a re-thinking of the intellectual landscape of Chaucer’s world and how this geography may have changed in the decades following the poet’s death.

5. Chaucerian Networks (organized by Peter Brown and Shayne Legassie)

The concept of “network” has a long, multifaceted history in the humanities and social sciences and in scholarship on Chaucer and other medieval authors. We invite proposals for sessions that consider the various networks that sustained the careers of Chaucer and other late-medieval writers, as well as sessions that examine the methodological assumptions that underpin traditional and emergent conceptions of “network” in the study of medieval literature and society. Possibilities include:

patronage and social networks in the Age of Chaucer
late-medieval networks of intellectual, cultural, and economic exchange, especially those that gave rise to new interpretive communities, or that promoted dialogue across established linguistic, religious, ethnic, social, or institutional divides
medieval paradigms that anticipate later notions of “network”
conceptions of “network” that developed in other disciplines (anthropology, ecology, medicine, computer science, etc.) but that might be useful to Chaucerian or Medieval Studies.

6. Ritual, Pageant, Spectacle (organized by Tamara Atkin and Emily Steiner)

We invite proposals for sessions on any aspect of medieval performance focusing on England and the British Isles, c. 1300-1550. We hope to sponsor sessions on a wide range of topics, including but not limited to the following: 1) The place of play (the cultural role of drama, its various sites and location, or its location in cities and towns); 2) Pageantry and civic life (drama and city politics, staging protest and critique, and propaganda); 3) religious ritual (liturgy, sacramentality, emotion and gesture, miracle, wonder and doubt); 4) The culture of spectatorship; 5) Court spectacle (royal pageants, ceremony, and the staging of kingship, including cross-Channel spectacle); 6) Periodization and performance; 7) legal dramas (trials, inquisition, punishment, proclamations and enactments of law); 8) Texts in plays/plays in texts.

7. Corporealities (organized by Jonathan Hsy and Katie Walter)

This thread seeks sessions exploring the norms, forms, and manifold possibilities of corporeality and the ways we think about bodily variety writ large. In particular, sessions might think about the non-“natural,” artificial or synthetic bodies constituted variously in medieval notions of the body politic, the spiritual body (of Christ), and community, as well as the forms of (human and non-human) corporeality constructed through the vehicles of theology, law, medicine, history and government. This thread will ask how diverse modes of embodiment shape our understanding of medieval culture; so too will it ask how modes of embodiment shape our own movements through a profession that seeks to better understand and rethink the past. This thread welcomes sessions that will address the complex intersections of race, disability, skin, parchment, environment, monstrosity, and embodied difference – in the age of Chaucer as well as the present.

8. Literary Forms (organized by Arthur Bahr and Anke Bernau)

Form, formalism, aesthetics and the distinctiveness of something called “the literary”—all these have been objects of renewed engagement and contestation in recent years. Sessions might:

delve more deeply into one or two key aspects of form (such as meter or rhyme), or on topics such as genre or alliterative poetry;
explore how literary effects emerge from the intersection of textual form with other kinds of form (such as manuscripts, or specific socio-cultural formations);
ask what and how “literary effects” actually are;
consider which different aesthetic categories operated or emerged within late medieval literature, and what sensory experiences they came out of, or gave rise to;
consider the relation of literariness to value.

We would also welcome a poster session that use the constraints of the poster form itself as a way of investigating the formal strangeness that so much medieval literature displays.

9. Uses of the Medieval (organized by Kathleen Davis and Hannah Johnson)

The Middle Ages have been recuperated, co-opted, exploited, and invented anew with each succeeding era. Few other scholars wrestle with such large questions of conceptualization, method, and first principles as do medievalists, even as we are aware of the ideological attachments that cling to our efforts. This thread encourages inquiry into wide-ranging methodological and disciplinary issues concerning the ideological uses of Chaucer or the medieval in diverse contexts. Sessions might examine how either Chaucer or the category of the medieval more generally serves as the theoretical scaffolding for a variety of intellectual models, such as philosophical claims, disciplinary formulations, or philosophies of history and/or forms of rationality. For example, some sessions might examine how the formation, or the forgetting, of the Middle Ages underlies discourses of modernity or anti-modernity; questions of alterity and ontology; or claims about epistemology and method.

Session Types

Paper panel: A paper session showcases scholarly work in the form of extended presentations of 20 minutes each. A paper panel should include no more than 3 presenters total (either 3 papers or 2 papers and a respondent) and should allow for at least 30 minutes of open discussion.

Roundtable: The goal of a roundtable is to focus discussion on a narrow topic, theme, or question, such as “John Shirley,” or “Chaucer’s ‘Retraction.’” Roundtables should include no more than 5 presenters and allow for at least 30 minutes of open discussion.

Seminars: The goal of a seminar is to generate extended conversation about a topic (e.g., “Re-Orienting Disability”), before, during, and after the NCS meeting. Participants are encouraged to circulate and discuss materials in advance of the seminar. Seminars should include no more than 7 presenters and allow for at least one hour of open discussion.

Poster sessions: Poster sessions are groupings of posters on a particular topic; each thread will have a group of posters associated with it. During the conference, all posters will be displayed in a single timeslot, with presenters in attendance to discuss their work and answer questions.

NB: NCS tried out a poster session for the first time in 2014, and the membership deemed it a great success. Posters usually include narrative, illustrations, tables, graphs, and similar presentation formats. The poster should concisely communicate the essence of the presenter’s research and/or showcase a particular artefact and the researcher’s findings. Colorado State University has published useful general information on poster sessions, which can be accessed here: http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/guide.cfm?guideid=78.

Some handsome example posters are available by following this link:

http://www.lifeandliterature.org/p/poster-session.html

A note on pedagogy sessions:
A pedagogy session can take the form of a paper panel, roundtable, seminar, or another innovative form (interview, debates, etc.). It should address topics or questions relevant to teaching medieval literature and culture at a variety of academic institutions.

Please note that we are asking for proposals to the call below (and attached) to be sent to a dedicated email account so that we can keep track of every single proposal: ncsproposals@slu.edu. Make sure you send your proposals there!


Seminar: “European Women in Early Modern Drama”

Due: 1 December 2014

Convenors: Dr Edel Semple, University College Cork, e.semple@ucc.ie
Dr Ema Vyroubalova, Trinity College Dublin, vyroubae@tcd.ie

While England’s early modern drama presents us with a plethora of foreign female characters – women such as Franceschina, the eponymous villain in The Dutch Courtesan, Queen Katherine inHenry VIII, the displaced Bella-Franca in Four Prentices of London, and Tamora in Titus Andronicus – no single study has taken these pervasive and significant figures as its focus. This seminar seeks to redress this gap in existing scholarship by exploring representations of European women in the drama of Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

Building on work by critics including Ton Hoenselaars, Jean E. Howard, Lloyd Edward Kermode, Michele Marrapodi, Jean-Christophe Mayer, Marianne Montgomery, and Jane Pettegree, and drawing on recent developments in studies of gender, race, culture, and politics, this seminar aims to explore why and how early modern dramatists repeatedly fashioned female characters of distinct nationalities. How notions of gender and foreignness intersect and/or diverge in early modern English play-texts will be the central concern of the seminar.

In a range of Elizabethan and Jacobean plays, foreign women are depicted as valuable links to European nations, and as threatening apertures within the English nation. In Sharpham’s The Fleer, for instance, the Italian courtesans bring strange customs to London, while in The Patient Man and the Honest Whore, the Italian courtesan is accused of spreading disease across national borders. Conversely, in Henry V, the ‘wooing’ of Katherine is a moment for linguistic exchange and she is seen as the desirable conduit to unite England and France. Thus, the seminar will consider how the staging of foreign women may enable English dramatists and their audiences to engage in debates about international relations, to deliberate on racial anxieties, to play out strategies of integration or exclusion, and to imagine England’s future vis-à-vis the rest of Europe.

Furthermore, in considering such a diverse range of characters, the seminar seeks to uncover points of commonality and difference in representations of European women, and will consider whether these women – from different nations, with varied social, religious, economic, and political identities – constitute a distinct phenomenon in the drama of the period. We are particularly interested in papers discussing theatrical depictions of European women as agents of and conduits for social, sexual, political, economic, linguistic and cultural interchange.

The papers may examine, among other aspects, representations of European women in early modern English drama in relation to:

- social, sexual, or cultural encounters and interactions
- notions and theories of race, ethnicity, hybridity, and miscegenation
- misogyny and/or xenophobia
- political and/or economic power
- crime and transgression
- linguistic exchange (e.g. accents or multilingualism)
- religious and/or social identities and groups (e.g. refugees, economic migrants)
- early modern geography and cartography
- locations and their theatrical renderings
- travel, travellers, and mobility
- early modern staging (e.g. playhouses, costumes, or stage props)
- printing and circulation of play-texts
- source texts and/or dramatic genres

Please submit an abstract (200-300 words) and a brief biography (150 words) by 1 December 2014 to all seminar conveners. All participants will be notified about the acceptance of their proposals by 1 March 2015. The deadline for submitting the completed seminar papers (3,000 words) is 1 May 2015.


12TH ANNUAL MCGILL-QUEEN’S GRADUATE CONFERENCE IN HISTORY, TO BE HELD AT QUEEN’S UNIVERSITY IN KINGSTON, ONTARIO, CANADA, 6-7 MARCH 2015 “THE PRACTICAL AND IMPRACTICAL PAST”

Deadline: 1 December 2014

Keynote Speaker: Professor Fredrik Logevall, Cornell University, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in History will present on “The Uses of History: Political Leaders and the Past”.

Luncheon Workshop: A roundtable discussion on the future uses and implications of the rise of digital humanities on the field of history.

Practical and Impractical Past: Given the varied public applications and misapplications of history, the McGill-Queen’s Graduate Conference in History invites graduate scholars from across the disciplines to submit papers on any history related topic. We especially welcome papers that interrogate the uses of history to understand current social and cultural issues such as:

· Social Movements
· Material Cultures and Art
· Religious Practices
· Mythologies and Mythmaking
· Digital History and the Humanities
· Political and Economic Agendas
· Settlement and Migration Patterns
· Space, Geography, and the Environment
· Issues of Methodology
· Applications of History

We encourage proposals from any geographic region or temporal period. Interdisciplinary submissions are welcome.
Please submit an abstract of no more than 250 words as well as a 125 word academic biography in Word or PDF format to mcgillqueens2015@gmail.com by 1 December 2014.

MQ15 Conference Committee, Queen’s University
www.mcgillqueens2015.wordpress.com


Mid-America Medieval Association, 2015 Annual Conference , The University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO, February 28, 2015
Due: 1 December 2014

Theme: Collectivity and Exchange
Keynote Address: Dr. Pamela Sheingorn

Papers are invited on a range of topics, including the conference theme of “Collectivity & Exchange,” for the annual meeting of the Mid-America Medieval Assn, which will convene on Saturday, 28 February 2015, at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Collectivity might be imagined expansively to include not just temporal but also ephemeral and spiritual communities. Exchange might also be considered in various forms, from economic and material to ideological and philosophical.

Please send proposals of 250 words by 1 December 2014 to:
Dr. Virginia Blanton
Department of English
University of Missouri-Kansas City
5121 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, Missouri 64110 USA
blantonv@umkc.edu

http://midamericamedievalassociation.org/


21st Annual ACMRS Conference “Trades, Talents, Guilds, and Specialists: Getting Things Done in the Middle Ages and Renaissance,” Feb. 2-7, 2015
Due: December 5, 2014

Interdisciplinary Conference in Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Thursday, February 5, 2015 to Saturday, February 7, 2015
Scottsdale, Arizona
Online submission date(s):
Sunday, June 1, 2014 to Friday, December 5, 2014

ACMRS invites session and paper proposals for its annual interdisciplinary conference to be held February 5-7, 2015 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Scottsdale. We welcome papers that explore any topic related to the study and teaching of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, and especially those that focus on: “Trades, Talents, Guilds, and Specialists: Getting Things Done in the Middle Ages and Renaissance”.

https://acmrs.org/conferences/annual-acmrs-conference


Globe Education at Shakespeare’s Globe’s spring conference, “The Halved Heart: Shakespeare and Friendship” (Friday 17– Sunday 19 April 2015)

Due: 12 December, 2014

For men and women in Shakespeare’s England, friendship was a relation that spanned the exquisite virtue of amicitia perfecta and the everyday exchanges of neighbourliness and commerce. A friend might be ‘another self’, but it was essential to be wary of false friends or flatterers. The complex nature of early modern friendship was a rich source of inspiration for early modern dramatists.

Speakers may address the Renaissance fascination with the ethical demands of idealised friendship, or the pragmatic reality of instrumental alliances, as explored on stage. Papers might consider the theatre as a site of social promiscuity, where spectators could be instructed in the arts (and hazards) of friendship even as such relationships were enacted in the auditorium. Or they might examine the overlap between friendship and eroticism, and the points of conflict between friendship and other forms of social alliance such as marriage, or the relationship between monarch and subject.

The conference will conclude on Sunday 19 April with a staged reading by a company of Globe actors of The Faithful Friends (Anon., King’s Men, c.1614).  Proposals of no more than 300 words for papers (or panels of up to three papers) may be submitted to Dr Will Tosh on will.t@shakespearesglobe.com.  The deadline for submissions is Friday 12 December 2014.  The conference is for scholars and students but is open to all members of the public who are interested in debates about early modern theatre and friendship.

shakespearesglobe.com/education


Rethinking Shakespeare and Italy: Cultural Exchanges from the Early Modern Period to the Present, ed. by Enza De Francisci and Chris Stamatakis (Routledge: Studies in Shakespeare Series)

Due: 12 December 2014

This volume brings together international scholars from English literature, Italian studies, drama, and linguistics, as well as actors and playwrights, and offers new perspectives on the vibrant relationships that can be traced between Shakespeare and Italy from the sixteenth to the twenty-first century. Besides offering a selection of individual examples of exchanges from Shakespeare’s own time to the present, this volume also ventures more theoretical paradigms to explain the fascinating dynamics by which exchange between Shakespeare and Italy is a two-way process. It is not simply that the literary, dramatic, and linguistic culture of Renaissance Italy shaped Shakespeare’s drama in his own time, but rather that, as this book shows by tracing his literary afterlife, Shakespeare’s plays helped shape Italian artistic culture in the ensuing centuries, in the realms of drama, opera, novels, and film. Unifying the chapters in this book is an interest in how Shakespeare’s drama represents, enacts, and becomes the subject of exchanges across the national, political, and cultural boundaries separating England and Italy.

Abstracts of approximately 250 words are sought for essays that address any period and any aspect of exchange between Shakespeare and Italian culture. Essays can be either empirical or more theoretical in nature, and can explore any mode of cultural interchange – from theatrical influences in either direction, to the cross-border travel of actors and acting troupes, to the artistic and political afterlife of Shakespeare’s plays in Italy, to the polyglot, linguistic exchanges that take place through translation, to name a few. The deadline for submissions is 12th December 2014. Abstracts should be sent to e.francisci@ucl.ac.uk, and will be subjected to peer review. First drafts of chapters (c. 6,000 words) should then be submitted to the editors ideally by March 2015.

So far, the volume includes chapters and case studies on the following areas:
- Shakespeare’s representation of travel in Italy – Shakespeare and Florio – Shakespeare’s relationship with the commedia dell’arte – Shakespeare’s early reception in Italy – Verdi’s operatic adaptations of Shakespeare – Performances of Shakespeare by the Italian grandi attori – Early Hebrew translations of Shakespeare’s plays set in Italy – Adaptations of Shakespeare in Fascist Italy – Strehler’s staging of Shakespeare’s histories – Recent stage and screen adaptations of Shakespeare by Italian translators and playwrights

For any questions or further information, please do not hesitate to contact e.francisci@ucl.ac.uk or c.stamatakis@ucl.ac.uk.


Journal of the Northern Renaissance, Open-themed 7th Issue
Due: 1 January 2015

The Journal of the Northern Renaissance (northernrenaissance.org) is calling for submissions for our open-themed seventh issue on any aspect of the cultural practice of Northern Europe in the period circa 1430-1650, including but not limited to:

  • literature
  • the history of art and architecture
  • music history
  • philosophy
  • theology
  • politics
  • scientific technologies

The Journal of the Northern Renaissance (JNR) is a peer-reviewed, open-access online journal dedicated to the study of early modern Northern European cultural production. We are particularly interested in studies exploring alternative cultural geographies, challenging existing conceptualizations and periodizations of the Renaissance in the North, and/or establishing continuities and ruptures with earlier and later epochs. Part of our intention, however, in having an open, unthemed issue, is to gauge where the most interesting work is being done and what questions are being asked by scholars working on Northern Renaissance culture across a wide range of disciplines.

Potential contributors are advised to consult the Information page of our website for details of the submissions procedure and style guidelines. We also welcome initial enquiries regarding possible contributions, which can be sent to us at northernrenaissance@gmail.com.


“POLY-OLBION AND THE WRITING OF BRITAIN,” Royal Geographical Society, London, 10-11 September 2015

Due: 5 January 2015

Confirmed speakers include Alison Chapman, Andrew Hadfield, Bernhard Klein, Sara Trevisan, and Angus Vine. The conference will also feature presentations by the Poly-Olbion Project Team:  Andrew McRae, Philip Schwyzer, Daniel Cattell, and Sjoerd Levelt.

Hosted by the Poly-Olbion Project, the conference will explore Michael Drayton’s Poly-Olbion within the wider context of early modern British discourses of space, place, nationhood, and regional identity. The conference will coincide with the opening of a major exhibition and series of public-facing events devoted to Poly-Olbion, derived from the AHRC-funded project and the associated HLF-funded ‘Children’s Poly-Olbion’. Papers dealing with aspects of Michael Drayton’s poem, John Selden’s commentary, William Hole’s maps, or the wider context of chorography and cartography in early modern Britain will be welcome.  Please send abstracts or full papers to Andrew McRae (a.mcrae@exeter.ac.uk) and Philip Schwyzer (p.a.schwyzer@exeter.ac.uk) by 5 January 2015.


Canada Chaucer Seminar, Saturday, April 18, 2015, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto

Due: 10 January 2015

The seventh annual Canada Chaucer Seminar will be held at the University of Toronto on Saturday, April 18th, 2015. The seminar provides a one-day forum where scholars, from Canada and elsewhere, come together to discuss current research on Chaucer and on late medieval literature and culture.

The 2015 gathering will include keynote papers by Paul Strohm (Columbia) and Emily Steiner (Pennsylvania), and several sessions of conference papers.

Proposals are invited for 20-minute conference papers on any aspect late medieval English literary culture. Submit one-page abstracts by January 10th 2015 to:

william.robins@utoronto.ca and sarah.star@utoronto.ca


‘Namque ego suetus eram hos libros legisse frequenter’: Early Medieval Practices of Reading and Writing, Den Haag, The Netherlands, 3-5 June 2015
Due: 15 January 2015

Organized by: Mariken Teeuwen, Irene van Renswoude and Evina Steinova, Huygens ING
Contact address: MarginalScholarship@gmail.com
Deadline for abstracts: 15 January 2015

This is a call for papers for a conference on the subject of books, practices of writing, reading, copying and studying in the early middle ages. It is organized by the research project ‘Marginal Scholarship: The Practice of Learning in the Early Middle Ages (c. 800 – c. 1000)’, which seeks to map the phenomenon of writing in the blank space of manuscripts (in the margin, in between the lines, on fly-leaves or inserted leaves) in the early middle ages, in order to gain a better understanding of the way in which books and texts were used in that period. In essence, we aim to understand the intellectual practices of the period as reflected by the manuscripts and to re-evaluate both how traditional the period was, and how innovative. Furthermore, we hope to explore how the developments of the culture of writing in this period led to developments in later periods, and also how they compare to those in other cultures, such as the Byzantine world or the world of Late Antiquity. Confirmed speakers include David Ganz and John Contreni.
The following questions and themes will be addressed in the sessions:

1. Practices of annotating
Who were allowed to make annotations in manuscripts? What can we learn about the hierarchical organization of the writing process in monastic or cathedral environments, and are there ways to say something about the status of scribes and/or scholars working in manuscript margins?
Annotating practices reflect many different functionalities of the appropriation of text: they can, for example, reflect a process of text comparison and textual criticism; they can have the aim to gather information in order to facilitate the composition of a new text; they can offer guidance to the reader, either in the sense of offering explanation or interpretation, or in the sense of warning the reader and delivering criticism; they can engage in a discussion with the author of the text, or with another annotator, or create stepping stones from one text to others, in order to broaden the reading of the text by offering new and different opinions. We would like to discuss these and other functionalities, and replace the mono-dimensional ‘annotated book = school book’ with a richer and more accurate model of interpretation.

2. The profile of annotating practices
Can we see patterns in the relationship between textual genres and the kind of marginal activity encountered in the margin? Were certain textual genres treated differently than others? For example, do theological texts invite other types of critical reflection than scientific texts or historical texts? Are there genres with ‘empty’ margins, and what would be the reason for that?
Can we distinguish sets of annotating practices which are specific to certain intellectual centres or groups of scholars? Can we distinguish individual practices even, which allow us to identify the scholar who worked in the manuscript? It has been argued, for example, that the group around Florus of Lyon had a very particular set of signs to mark patristic texts, in order to prepare florilegia of patristic quotations on certain subjects. Are there other examples of such private practices, and what happened to them after the death of the scholar(s) at their centre?
Some annotating practices are particular to a certain period in history. Tironian notes, for example, seem to have been used in a specific time and space for marginal comments, and are rarely found outside that period. The Nota sign gets company in the shape of a pointing hand at a certain moment in time, is perhaps even replaced by it. Could we mark annotation practices on a chronological scale, just as we can with letter shapes or other physical features of manuscripts?
3. Cultures of writing
Manuscripts, scholars and books travelled, and thus the culture of writing is a dynamic and ever evolving field. Can we map the circles of influence from one scholar, or one school to the next through the eyes of manuscripts? Can we trace specific practices of annotating or writing in general through history, and follow their historical development? And do these practices offer us insight into the intellectual networks of the time? What would be good strategies to map the dynamics of the lives of manuscripts, both in the sense of their actual travels, and in the sense of their changing contents?

A selection of the papers from the conference will be collected in an edited volume, to be published in 2016.

If you are interested in participating in this conference, please send us a title and abstract (ca 400-500 words), your contact information and affiliation to MarginalScholarship@gmail.com. The deadline for sending in abstracts is 15 January 2015. You will hear back from us before 15 February 2015 whether your proposal has been accepted.
The organizers offer to cover your expenses of accommodation. No fee will be asked, lunches will be provided and one conference dinner. For your travel expenses we kindly ask you to rely on the budget of your own university or other academic sponsor. If this is a problem, please indicate this in your correspondence with us.

Mariken Teeuwen, Irene van Renswoude and Evina Steinova: MarginalScholarship@gmail.com
Mariken.Teeuwen@huygens.knaw.nl
Irene.van.Renswoude@huygens.knaw.nl
Evina.Steinova@huygens.knaw.nl


“Literature and Philosophy 1500-1700,” A Postgraduate Conference at the University of Sussex, 14th-16th July 2015

Due: 15th January 2015

Plenary speakers: Katrin Ettenhuber (Pembroke, University of Cambridge); Neil Rhodes (University of St Andrews); Christopher Tilmouth (Peterhouse, University of Cambridge)
The Centre for Early Modern and Medieval Studies (CEMMS: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/cems/) at the University of Sussex is pleased to announce its forthcoming Postgraduate Conference on the theme of ‘Literature and Philosophy 1500-1700’, which will take place on the 14th-16th July 2015.
This conference will explore the relationship between early modern literature and philosophical thought, theories and issues. How philosophical was literature in this period? Did literature and philosophy work in symbiosis or discordantly? How are philosophical ideas approached in early modern literary texts? In what ways could literature function to promote or critique philosophical ideas? What was the role of commercial literature in disseminating philosophical thought? How did circulation of courtly literature influence contemporary political and philosophical thinking? What was the role of different textual mediums (such as codices, pamphlets or newsbooks) in disseminating philosophical ideas? How were philosophical theories engaged with in poetry, prose or drama? Did the genre or medium matter?
We welcome abstracts of 200-300 words for individual papers of 20 minutes or of 600 words for panels of three related papers. These could be on topics including but not limited to:

  • Aristotelianism
  • Atheism
  • Augustinism
  • Averroism
  • Casuistry
  • Equivocation
  • Epicurianism
  • Ethics/ Moral philosophy
  • Figures of Space
  • Humanism
  • Logic
  • Machiavellianism
  • Philosophy of Nature
  • Philosophy of Religion
  • Platonism/Neo-Platonism
  • Political philosophy
  • Rationalism
  • Scepticism
  • Scholasticism
  • Stoicism
  • Thomism
  • Toleration

Please submit your abstract along with your institution, paper title and a brief biography to litphilconference@sussex.ac.uk by 15th January 2015.


Call for Contributors: Queenship and Counsel in the Early Modern World

Due: 15 January, 2015

Editors: Helen Graham-Matheson (UCL) and Joanne Paul (NCH)

This collection attempts to highlight the ways in which queenship and counsel were negotiated and represented throughout the early modern age (1400-1800). Advice-giving was one of the most prevalent topics in early modern political discourse, but was often limited to the interaction between a male monarch and his male councillors. Queenship and counsel thus posed a potential problem for early modern political theory and practice. Although this topic has been studied with reference to individual queens, no collection has attempted to study the relationship between queenship and counsel in grand perspective. The volume will be submitted to the Queenship and Power series (Palgrave Macmillan) edited by Carole Levin and Charles Beem, with planned publication in early 2017.

We are seeking proposals for submissions from graduate students and scholars in history, literature, philosophy, art history or related fields. Although some longue durée and comparative papers will be accepted, the intention is to produce a collection of chapters each focusing on a single reign, individual or relationship. We welcome submissions which focus on any geographical area within the early modern world, and those from a non-European perspective are especially encouraged. Submissions might focus on any of the four categories of queenship – regnant, regent, dowager and consort – and on both formal and informal varieties of counsel.

Suggested themes include:

  • Rhetoric, persuasion and power
  • Reason, prudence and emotion
  • Legislation and institutionalized councils
  • Ceremonials, representation and symbolism
  • Diplomacy, intelligence and espionage
  • Marriage, family, sexuality and the body
  • Religion and philosophy
  • Culture and patronage

Chapter proposals of 500 words, accompanied by a short summary of biography and research interests (maximum of 250 words), must be submitted to queenshipandcounsel@gmail.com by 15 January 2015 to be considered. Accepted authors will be notified by March 2015, and final submissions due Dec 2015.

Co-editors:
Helen Graham-Matheson will complete her PhD at University College London in 2014. Her thesis focuses on the political role of female courtier at the mid-Tudor courts. She has published on related topics in Journal of Early Modern WomenThe Politics of the Female Household (Brill, 2013) and Book Culture in Provincial Society (Ashgate, 2014).

Joanne Paul is Lecturer in the History of Ideas at New College of the Humanities, London. Her PhD completed at Queen Mary, University of London (2013) explored the discourse of political counsel in Anglophone writing from 1485-1651, and she has published on related topics in Renaissance Quarterly, the Journal of Intellectual History and Political Thought and in her own co-edited volume,Governing Diversities (Cambridge Scholars Press, 2011).


Special Issue of Gender & History: Marriage’s Global Past

Due: 15 January 2015

Editors: Sara McDougall, John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY), Sarah Pearsall, Cambridge University

This special issue of Gender & History explores marriage’s global past from the medieval to the modern era. We solicit contributions that examine aspects of the history of marriage in societies and cultures throughout the world, with special attention to ideas and practices of monogamy and polygamy. Of particular interest is the role of gender in the construction and reconstruction of marriage. We also solicit papers that interrogate the relationship of marriage to various forms of power, including those of state, religious, and colonial institutions as well as the complicated dynamics of authority within households. We welcome both broad, comparative studies and more narrowly-focused ones.

Many imagine marriage as a timeless institution. In fact, as William Alexander wrote in 1779, in his History of Women, From the Earliest Antiquity, to the Present Time, “Marriage is so far from having been an institution, fixed by permanent and unalterable laws, that it has been continually varying in every period, and in every country.” This historian thus acknowledged both the shifting nature of marriage as an institution in a global context, as well as the ways that marriage profoundly shapes, and is shaped by, the role and status of women and men. This special issue similarly assumes varieties of marriages, in terms of both chronology and geography.

This special issue will also interrogate the profound interconnection of gender and marriage, especially with reference to issues of rank, race, age, nationality, culture, religion, and sexuality. Indeed, what might constitute “traditional” marriage in one context might appear radical in another. Indeed, while many contemporary scholars and advocates have called for a redefinition of what is termed “traditional marriage,” recent scholarship has also emphasized how very little is traditional about what is currently described in the Oxford English Dictionary as: “the formal union of a man and a woman, typically as recognized by law, by which they become husband and wife.”

One of the goals of this special issue is to explore how the idea of so-called “traditional marriage” took root and spread in many cultures. Often, of course, it did so even as local social practices deviated, sometimes notably, from this norm. Christian teachings beginning in the first millennium endorsed a particular model of marriage that became not only a centerpiece of Christian faith but also a potent political and social force across the world. In this model, marriage had to be exclusive and indissoluble, a monogamous and enduring commitment between one man and one woman. At that time and in subsequent centuries, as Christian teachings spread throughout the world, this model of marriage came into contact with cultures that had a variety of different ideas about the best ways to marry, and the purpose of marriage. Clashes between different practices of marriage lay at the heart of many early modern and modern encounters.  This special issue of Gender & History hopes to offer new interpretations of this complex and fascinating history.

The volume will begin with a colloquium to be held 18-20 March 2016 at Cambridge University. Paper proposals (750 words maximum) are to be submitted by 15 January 2015. Invitations to present at the colloquium will be issued in February 2015. All those presenting must submit articles for pre-circulation by 15 January 2016. Participants will also be expected to read all the other articles and to participate fully in the two-day colloquium. This participation will include commenting on the paper of another participant, as well as more general discussions.  After the colloquium, participants will be invited to submit their revised papers for publication. Those accepted by the editors for publication will be expected to submit their manuscripts by 1 September 2016. This timeframe will allow the editors to work with authors to produce the final text of the issue for publication in 2017.

Please send paper proposals to smcdougall@jjay.cuny.edu andsmsp100@cam.ac.uk by 15 January 2015, with “Marriage’s Global Past” in the subject heading.


“VOICES AND BOOKS 1500-1800,”  July 16th-18th 2015, Newcastle University and City Library, Newcastle

Due: 16 January 2015

Organiser: Jennifer Richards, Newcastle University with Helen Stark, Newcastle University

Keynote Speakers
Heidi Brayman Hackel (University of California, Riverside)
Anne Karpf (London Metropolitan University)
Christopher Marsh (Queen’s University, Belfast) with The Carnival Band
Perry Mills, Director of Edward’s Boys (King Edward VI School, Stratford-upon-Avon)
Although it is often acknowledged that early modern books were routinely read aloud we know relatively little about this. Oral reading is not embedded as an assumption in existing scholarship. On the contrary, over the last two decades it is the studious and usually silent reader, pen in hand, who has been placed centre stage. This conference invites contributions that explore the kind of evidence and research methods that might help us to recover this lost history; that think about how reading / singing aloud relates to other kinds of orality; that recover the civic and / or social life of the performed book in early modern culture; and reflect on how the performance of the scripted word might inform our reading of early modern writing today. We also welcome papers that think through what it might mean to make ‘voice’ central to our textual practice.
We invite proposals (in English) that address the relationship between orality and literacy in any genre in print or manuscript in any European language. The genres might be literary, religious, musical, medical, scientific, or educational. We encourage proposals that recover diverse communities and readers/hearers. We also welcome papers that consider problems of evidence: e.g. manuscript marginalia; print paratexts; visual representations; as well as non-material evidence (voice; gesture). We will be particularly pleased to receive suggestions for presentations that include practical illustrations, performances or demonstrations.

Topics might include, but are not restricted to:
• The sound of print
• The physiology of voicing
• Singing and speaking
• Rhetoric: voice and gesture
• Performance and emotions
• Communities of hearers
• Acoustic reconstructions
• Children’s reading / reading to children

200-word abstracts for 20-minute papers from individuals and panels (3 speakers) to be sent to voicesandbooks15001800@gmail.com The DEADLINE for abstracts is: Friday 16th January 2015.

There will be a small number of travel bursaries for postgraduate and early career researchers. If you are interested in applying for support please contact Helen.Stark@ncl.ac.uk. Deadline: May 1st 2015.

For more information on the AHRC Network Voices and Books 1500-1800, co-led by Professor Jennifer Richards (Newcastle) and Professor Richard Wistreich (RCM London), please visit our website: https://research.ncl.ac.uk/voicesandbooks/


Social Networks 1450-1850, 16-17 July 2015, University of Sheffield
Due: 31 January 2015

The term ‘social network’ has become a prominent part of modern day discourse, and in recent years there has been rapid growth in the field of social network studies. Yet a world in which individuals are connected to one another in multifarious ways—spanning time, place, institutional affiliation, and other social boundaries—is not just a modern phenomenon. In the early modern period, neighbourhoods, villages, cities and continents were criss-crossed with relationships and ties of obligation, through which passed friendship, as well as animosity; money, ideas, information, material goods, and more. The concepts and methodologies of social network analysis, together with new digital technologies, provide the tools to uncover the nature of these communities in the past.

At stake is the very nature of society: how did people connect to one another, to what ends, and with what results? These are questions with relevance to disciplines across the humanities and social sciences. As such, this conference brings together historically minded scholars with an interest in social networks from a range of perspectives and disciplinary backgrounds.

Confirmed speakers:
Edward Muir, Clarence L. Ver Steeg Professor in the Arts and Sciences (Northwestern)
Emily Erikson, Assistant Professor of Sociology (Yale)
Mark Philp, Professor of History (Warwick)

Proposals for 20-minute papers or panels of three speakers are welcome from a wide chronological and geographical reach, exploring social network concepts, methodologies and findings. For example, papers might consider:

  • Methodologies: sources, challenges, and approaches; digital technologies and techniques for the collection, storage, analysis and presentation of data
  • ‘Ego-centric’ or ‘whole’ networks
  • Familial and kinship networks
  • Merchants or trading communities
  • Religious, intellectual, literary, political or institutional communities
  • The cultural values underpinning social networks: for example honesty, trust, or desire for profit
  • How social networks change over time
  • The geographical reach of networks: local, regional, national or international; urban or rural

For individual paper proposals, please submit a title and 200-word abstract, along with contact details. For panel proposals, please include a title and 200-word abstract for each paper and contact details for one speaker on the panel.
For more information, please contact the conference organizer, Kate Davison (kate.davison@sheffield.ac.uk)
Details about postgraduate bursaries will be publicised in due course.


The Spiritual Geopolitics of the Early Modern World (1500-1800), March 13, 2015 – Service Historique de la Défense, Château de Vincennes (France).
Due: Feb. 15, 2015

Proposals, which should not exceed 500 words, should be sent by September 15, 2014 to lauric.henneton@uvsq.fr. Papers, which will be precirculated, are due by Feb. 15, 2015. They may be in French or English. http://redehja.hypotheses.org/263


“Heroes and Heroines,” Special issue for 2016 volume of Shakespeare Shakespeare Jahrbuch / Yearbook of the German Shakespeare Society
Due: 31 March 2015

The editorial board of Shakespeare Jahrbuch invites articles on the following topics:

• Shakespeare as a cultural/national hero
• Heroes and heroines in Shakespeare’s plays
• Heroism in Shakespeare’s plays
• Shakespearean anti-heroes
• Tragic and comic heroes/heroines
• Heroism and genre
• Shakespeare and the heroes of early modern England
• Shakespeare and (early modern, Romantic, Victorian, modern …) hero-worship
• Actors and actresses as heroes/heroines
• Heroes /heroines in Shakespeare adaptations
• …
Shakespeare Jahrbuch, the Yearbook of the German Shakespeare Society, is a peer-reviewed journal. It offers contributions in German and English, scholarly articles, an extensive section of book reviews, and reports on Shakespeare productions in the German-speaking world.

Papers to be published in the Shakespeare Jahrbuch should be formatted according to our style sheet, which can be downloaded from the website of the German Shakespeare Society at http://shakespeare-gesellschaft.de/en/jahrbuch/note-on-submission.html.

Please send your manuscripts (of not more than 6,000 words) to the editor of the Shakespeare Jahrbuch, Prof. Dr. Sabine Schülting (email: sabine.schuelting@fu-berlin.de), by 31 March 2015.


Call for Book Manuscripts: Maps, Spaces, Cultures

Edited by Surekha Davies (Western Connecticut State University) and Asa Simon Mittman (California State University, Chico). Editorial board: Ricardo Padrón (University of Virginia), Ayesha Ramachandran (Yale University) and Dan Terkla (Illinois Wesleyan University). Publisher: Arjan van Dijk (Brill).

This innovative series seeks monographs and essay collections that investigate how notions of space, geography, and mapping shaped medieval and early modern cultures. While the history of cartography has traditionally focused on internal developments in European mapping conventions and technologies, pre-modern scribes, illuminators, and printers of maps tended to work in multiple genres. Spatial thinking informed and was informed by multiple epistemologies and perceptions of the order of nature. Maps, Spaces, Cultures therefore integrates the study of cartography and geography within cultural history. It puts genres that reflected and constituted spatial thinking into dialogue with the cultures that produced and consumed them, as well as with those they represented.

The editors welcome submissions from scholars of the histories of art, material culture, colonialism, exploration, ethnography (including that of peoples described as monsters), encounters, literature, philosophy, religion, science and knowledge, as well as of the history of cartography and related disciplines. They encourage interdisciplinary submissions that cross traditional historical, geographical, or methodological boundaries, that include works from outside Western Europe and outside the Christian tradition, and that develop new analytical approaches to pre-modern spatial thinking, cartography, and the geographical imagination.

Authors are cordially invited to write to either of the series editors, Surekha Davies (surekha.davies@gmail.com) and Asa Simon Mittman (asmittman@mail.csuchico.edu), or to the publisher at Brill, Arjan van Dijk (dijk@brill.com), to discuss the submission of proposals and/or full manuscripts.

For Brill’s peer review process see here:

http://www.brill.com/author-gateway/publishing-books-brill/propose-your-publication