MAA News – “Race & Gender in the Global Middle Ages” Working Group

Friday, December 8, 2023 at 12pm-1:30pm EST

Denva Gallant, Assistant Professor of Art History, Rice University

“The Black Body as Site of Conversion: Race and Ethnicity in Late Medieval Italy.”

How might we understand the racialization in medieval Italy or ethnicity as a meaningful and applicable categorization during the period and place? While scholars such as Nicole Lopez-Jantzen have applied racial concepts to the study of identity formation in the early Middle Ages, the Italian peninsula during the later Middle Ages still requires thorough treatment. In this essay, intended for an audience of scholars who are not already experts in this area but who want to address themes of medieval ethnicity and/or race in their research or teaching, I trace the evolution of the study difference and representation on the Italian peninsula. While this essay will serve more as a reference guide than scholarly critique, it will hopefully speak to new avenues of research.

Respondent: Dr. Pamela Patton, Director of the Index of Medieval Art, Princeton University

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