MAA CARA Report: The Catholic University of America
The Center for Medieval & Byzantine Studies at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. is a community of over thirty scholars and a group of graduate students from various Schools and Departments across campus. It administers both graduate and undergraduate programs in Medieval and Byzantine Studies with an interdisciplinary focus, and runs a series of extracurricular events. On the undergraduate side, we have a small but steady number of minors and majors, and an active club called Medieval Society, which attracts enthusiasts of the Middle Ages from all majors. In 2018-19, we have embarked on a revision of our undergraduate curriculum to make the major and minor more accessible to students by streamlining requirements and aligning them with the course offerings in existing programs. We have also made minor changes to the graduate curriculum in order to cut time to degree. At the same time, the Center is undergoing a self-study to chart a new course for the future and to better align its operation with the goals of the University. As usual, the Center continues to have robust extracurricular programming: we co-sponsored two one-day workshops (on Christian Scrolls, and on The Quran and Ethiopia), numerous public lectures by renown scholars (on medieval history by William Chester Jordan and Yitzhak Hen, on art by Alison Perchuk, and on public medievalism by Paul Sturtevant). The Medieval Society offered museum visits throughout DC, musical events, film screenings, and social gatherings on campus, and organized two signature events, a multi-course Medieval Banquet with entertainment, and Medieval Day, a public celebration with medieval crafts, music, games, reenactors, and food. These events draw many participants from across campus and the local community at large.
Submitted by Lilla Kopár, Director