Call for Papers – Texas Medieval Association

The University of North Texas (Denton) is happy to announce that they will be hosting the annual conference of the Texas Medieval Association, October 3-4, 2014.  More information can be found on the TEMA website (

This year TEMA will be held in conjunction with the annual conference of the

NT Medieval Graduate Student Symposium, October 2, 2014.

Keynote Speakers:

  • Dr. Barbara Rosenwein, Loyola University, Chicago: “Jean Gerson’s Interdisciplinary Theory of Emotions.”
  • Dr. Bruce Holsinger, University of Virginia, “Voice/Text/Character: Historical Fiction in the Archives.”

Call for Papers and Sessions

Deadline for submission of a 300 word abstract is August 15, 2014.

Abstracts and short CV should be sent to:

While we will entertain papers on any topic, from any discipline of Medieval Studies—Art History, Religion, Philosophy, English, History, Foreign Languages, Music, we particularly welcome those that engage the multifaceted topic of

“Interdisciplinarity in the Age of Relevance.”*

Many of us in the academy, even those amongst us who are preparing for a career in the academy, are confronted with the constant refrain of “relevance.” The state of the academy and its public rhetoric profess among its highest goals an emphasis on community engagement, tangible solutions to “real” world problems, and quantifiable results that produce change and progress.  Highlighting the value of stem research, and stressing the potential for expansive pools of external funding, we in the Humanities are asked to consider the creative potential and lucrative benefits of interdisciplinary research clusters and cross-campus collaborative partnerships.   The underlying suggestion in this none-to-subtle rhetoric–even recently professed by the President of the United States—is, of course,  that the humanities in general, and Medieval Studies in particular,  are less-relevant in our current era because we do not on the surface contribute to this over-arching public mission.

Beginning however, with the understanding that all the various disciplines comprising Medieval Studies—English, History, Music/Liturgy, Philosophy/Religion, Archaeology, Art History, Language Studies—are inherently interdisciplinary and in some sense inseparable, we seek papers that explore or exploit  the difference between “Interdisciplinary,” “Intra-disciplinary,” Extra-disciplinary,” and even “Super-disciplinary” studies.  We are interested in examples of those who are engaging technology in their studies and/or have incorporated a theoretical stance in line with the hard sciences, or perhaps seek to turn the notion of “Relevance” on its head.  We ask: What role do Medievalists play in this new age?  Where do we see ourselves and our projects in the world of “real solutions?”

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Executive Director Announcement

To the Members of the Medieval Academy,                      

On behalf of the Council, I am delighted to announce the appointment of our new Executive Director, Lisa Fagin Davis. The Council’s decision comes after an extensive search, with wide consultation and expressions of interest solicited both within and beyond the Academy. We are all, I am sure, grateful to the Search Committee, consisting of vice presidents William Chester Jordan (chair) and Barbara Newman, Treasurer Gene Lyman, Councillor Bonnie Effros, and former Executive Director Rick Emmerson, for their diligent work in identifying Lisa as the right person to lead us. Many of you will already know Lisa through her fine work as acting director, a post which she accepted in May, 2013. Since then I am sure you have been impressed, as has the Council, by her enthusiasm, her hard work, her willingness to learn (and learn quickly) and, above all, her deep commitment to the Medieval Academy. I am sure you join me in wishing her well in the full-time post which she assumes officially on July 1 of this year, when she will drop the ‘acting’ from her title. All of us involved with the administration of the Academy in recent months know we are in good hands. Congratulations to Lisa.

Richard W. Unger, President

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Conferences – Imagining Medieval English

The University of Notre Dame will host “Imagining Medieval English” on September 15, 16, and 17. The conference, which is open to the public, will bring together 12 distinguished scholars who will speak on topics such as the reasons for positing coherence in the linguistic record of 500-1500; the kinds of coherence and difference that can be identified among medieval English regional dialects; the role of historical grammars and dictionaries in the construction of medieval English; the nature of historical linguistic evidence; and the relations between literary language and linguistic history. For additional information contact Tim Machan ( or see

(See our calendar for more conferences)

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Call for Papers – Copies, Copying, and Mimetic Acts

Copies, Copying, and Mimetic Acts

New England Medieval Studies Conference

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Middlebury College

The medieval world teemed with copies of every variety: holy Christian figures looked to Christ as the ultimate imago; scribes copied the written word in biblical and historical texts; illuminators worked with pre-established models; goldsmiths sculpted simulacral figures of saints and sacred objects; political and ecclesiastical figures modeled their ritual behavior to connect themselves to the historical and biblical pasts; preachers drew from large collections of exempla to integrate into their sermons. As much as we can say that all of these cultural phenomena involved copying and, often, mimesis, it is also clear that the medieval culture of the copy was multivalent and flexible.

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers that address any aspect of these and related concepts in any field of medieval studies. We welcome papers that integrate new theoretical approaches to this material, and we especially encourage work that pays close attention to things copied and the copies themselves. By Sunday, June 1, 2014, please email abstracts of no longer than 250 words along with a current cv to the conference organizers at:

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Call for Papers – Knowing Nature in the Medieval & Early Modern Worlds

The Graduate Field Committee in Medieval & Early Modern Studies at University of Maryland, College Park–an interdisciplinary group of faculty and graduate students–is excited to announce this year’s conference, Knowing Nature in the Medieval & Early Modern Worlds.

Nature, according to the critic Raymond Williams, is quite possibly “the most difficult word in the English language.” The genealogy of nature’s complexities—semantic, philological, epistemological, ontological—are the subject of this two-day conference that seeks to bring into dialogue historians of science, philosophy, art, and literature. How did early writers and artists and other thinkers know and encounter nature? What practices made nature legible? What ethics were thought to arise out of the environment? This event considers a wide variety of cultural productions in the medieval and early modern periods. By what metaphors and strategies did pre-modern people represent the sensible world of matter? This event considers a wide variety of cultural productions in the medieval and early modern periods, seeking to rethink the relation between fields of knowledge and to bridge the widening gap between the humanities and the sciences in our own universities.

The conference will take place October 24-25, 2014.  Please submit 250-word paper proposals to by May 1.

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MAA News – Publications Update

shieldWe are pleased to announce that first-edition copies of forty Medieval Academy Books are now available at discounted members-only pricing through the Medieval Academy bookstore:

The Medieval Academy continues to publish books in partnership with the University of Toronto Press under the Medieval Academy Books imprint. To submit a manuscript for consideration by the Publications Advisory Board, email your submission to  the Acting Executive Director at

As a new feature of the Medieval Academy blog, we will be giving authors the opportunity to respond to reviews of their work published in Speculum (at the discretion of the Editor and the Executive Director). Click here for the first such dialogue, in which Peter Cocozzella responds to Rosanna Cantavella’s review of Text, Translation and Critical Interpretation of Joan Roís de Corella’s Tragèdia de Caldesa (Speculum 88.4 [2013]: 1074-6):

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MAA News – In Memoriam: Emily Vogt

Those of you who have been part of the Medieval Academy for some time will doubtless remember Emily Vogt, who worked for the Academy as Assistant to the Executive Director for twenty-five years, from 1959 – 1983. She was a critical component of the staff, served as the institutional memory of the organization and was a beloved member of the Academy family. We were informed by Emily’s nephew of her death on 25 December 2013 (her obituary is here).

In her memory, we are reprinting the tribute to Emily that was published in Medieval Academy News upon her retirement (MAN 86 (Sept. 1983), p. 1).

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MAA News – Baldwin Fellowship

DanielsNathan A. Daniels of The Johns Hopkins University will receive the Medieval Academy of America’s 2014 Baldwin Fellowship. He is working with Prof. Gabrielle Spiegel on a dissertation entitled “Crafting Society: Guild Organization and Urban Life in Paris, 1292-1350.” Mr. Daniels will spend his Baldwin Fellowship year in Paris studying guild records and tax rolls at the Archives nationales and the Bibliothèque nationale.

The Birgit Baldwin Fellowship in French Medieval History was established in 2004 by John W. Baldwin and Jenny Jochens in memory of their daughter Birgit. It is endowed through the generosity of her family. The Fellowship provides a grant of $20,000 to support a graduate student in a North American university who is researching and writing a significant dissertation for the Ph.D. on any subject in French medieval history that can be realized only by sustained research in the archives and libraries of France. The Fellowship carries with it the possibility of renewal for a second year.

The members of the Baldwin Committee in 2013-14 were Constance Bouchard, Chair (University of Akron), Adam Davis (Denison University), and Richard Barton (University of North Carolina, Greensboro).

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MAA News – CARA Summer Scholarships

Deadlines are approaching for the CARA Summer Scholarships. CARA members sponsor a number of summer programs in Latin, paleography, manuscript studies, etc. CARA awards full tuition scholarships to students participating in several of these programs; other programs are funded entirely by or jointly with the hosting institution. Details are provided here.

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MAA News – 2015 Call for Papers

2015 Call for papersThe 2015 Annual Meeting of the Medieval Academy of America will be hosted by the Medieval Institute of the University of Notre Dame and will take place on 12-14 March in Notre Dame, Indiana. The Program Committee invites proposals for papers on all topics and in all disciplines and periods of medieval studies. Any member of the Medieval Academy may submit a paper proposal, excepting those who presented papers at the annual meetings of the Medieval Academy in 2013 or 2014; others may submit proposals as well but must become members in order to present papers at the meeting. Special consideration can be given to individuals whose specialty would not normally involve membership in the Medieval Academy.

The complete Call for Papers with additional information, submission procedures, selections guidelines, and organizers is available here.

Please contact the Program Committee at if you have any questions.

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