CFP: Early Modern to Postmodern Medievalisms (Exeter, 9/2010)

Recasting the Past: Early Modern to Postmodern Medievalisms

A Conference at the University of Exeter

1-2 September 2010

In 1649, the radical Digger movement called on the people of England to ‘throw down that Norman yoke’; in 1849, at the launch of the periodical the Anglo-Saxon, its British readers were addressed as ‘Anglo-Saxons all’; and in 2009, a cover story for Harpers magazine accused American soldiers in Afghanistan of acting ‘exactly like the crusaders of 1096′.

This conference will draw together research examining how, from the Renaissance to the present, historical narratives about Britain’s ‘medieval’ past have been drawn on to foster communal identities; to fuel, legitimate or oppose social and political change; and to resist or moderate the forces of modernity. Confirmed speakers include Rosemary Hill, author of God’s Architect: Pugin and the Building of Romantic Britain (2007) and Bruce Holsinger, author of The Premodern Condition: Medievalism and the Making of Theory (2005).

Proposals for individual papers of 20 minutes or 3-paper panels are invited. Possible topics might include:

The formation of regional and national identities

The politics of Pre-Raphaelitism

Gothic architecture

The reception of historical medieval figures – King Alfred, Richard III, the Black Prince, etc

The social/political agendas of translation and editing projects

The uses of chivalry, monasticism, feudalism, etc in post-medieval thought and praxis

The establishment of medieval-inspired institutions and associations

The social uses of King Arthur, Robin Hood and other medieval myths/legends/folklore

Please send proposals of 200-300 words to Dr Joanne Parker, Dr Philip Schwyzer, and Dr Corinna Wagner at medievalisms@exeter.ac.uk by 31st January 2010.

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