Matters of the Word
Barnard College’s Twenty-Fourth Medieval and Renaissance Conference
Saturday, December 6, 2014
Registration: please click here.
Matters of the Word will explore issues of textual materiality in the Middle Ages and Renaissance. We will consider both the material upon which words are transmitted (parchment, paper, wood, marble, bodies, etc.), as well as the inscribed object’s visual aspects (illustrations, etc.). Interdisciplinary at its core, this conference examines not only the intersection of literary studies and art history, but also addresses central concerns of the history of science, history of law, aesthetic philosophy, museum conservation, and book history.
All sessions will be held in Barnard Hall, 3009 Broadway, New York, NY 10027
Barnard Hall, First Floor
Welcome: Christopher Baswell, Rachel Eisendrath, Phillip Usher
Plenary: Brigitte Miriam Bedos-Rezak (NYU)
“Texture as Signature”
Introduced by Christopher Baswell (Barnard and Columbia)
Chair: Laurie Postlewate (Barnard)
-Jessica Brantley (Yale), "Forms of Devotional Reading in the Pavement Hours"
-Vincent Debiais (Université de Poitiers), “Writing on Light”
-Emma Berat (Columbia), “Writing with the body: reproduction and textual corruption in the Man of Law’s Tale”
Words in Public
Chair: Phillip Usher (NYU)
-Katie Chenoweth (Princeton), “Founding French: Print Orthography and the Public Sphere, 1529-1550”
-David LaGuardia (Dartmouth), “"Word Matters in the Public Space of 16th-Century Paris"
-Elizabeth Black (Old Dominion), “Naming and Shaming: Word and (Fecal) Matter”
Plenary: Peter N. Miller (Bard Graduate Center)
“The Material Culture of Cultural History: A Trip through Peiresc’s Mediterranean World”
Introduced by Rachel Eisendrath (Barnard)
Writing on Buildings
Chair: Joel Kaye (Barnard)
-Christopher Baswell (Barnard and Columbia), “The Textual Chamber and the Trojan Scene in Chaucer's Book of the Duchess”
-Ken Kurihara (Union Theological Seminary), “Help God from Suffering: Hausinschriften and Community Lives in Early Modern German Cities”
-Margaret Meserve (Notre Dame), "Publicatio in valvis: the politics of promulgation in papal Rome, 1420-1520"
Boundaries of Print Culture
Chair: Anne Lake Prescott (Barnard)
-Catherine Emerson (National University of Ireland, Galway), “Words on the Page: Typography in Renaissance Medievalism”
-Anneliese Pollock Renck (Bucknell University), "'Revitalizing and Resituating an Original': Cicero, Benjamin, and Camille"
-Marian Rothstein (Carthage), "The Persistence of the Manuscript”
Matters of Sound
Chair: Susan Leslie Boynton (Columbia)
-Sarah Kay (NYU), “Sound and the Word in Troubadour Lyric: How Human Is Song?”
-Alison Cornish (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor), “Words and Blood: Music and the Remediation of Meaning in Dante”
-Andrew Albin (Fordham, Lincoln Center), “Sound Matters: Singing the Officium of Richard Rolle of Hampole”
Marks of Authority
Chair: Jesus Rodriguez-Velasco (Columbia)
-Catherine Brown (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor), “Tactile Argument and the Sign of the Hand”
-Shannon Wearing (NYU), “Materializing Women in Iberian Illuminated Cartularies”
-Nino Zchomelidse (Johns Hopkins), “Authenticity and Illusion: The Marriage Charter of Otto II and Theophanu”
Please contact Rachel Eisendrath (email@example.com)
Medieval and Renaissance Lives
Please join us for a year-long speaker series designed especially for undergraduates in the Medieval and Renaissance Studies programs at Barnard and Columbia. As part of this series, alumni of the university will discuss in an informal setting their academic and professional trajectories, as well as their current work.
6:00 pm, Wednesday October 8
Lauren Mancia, Brooklyn College
Barnard Hall Room 409
5:30 pm, Monday November 24
Karen Green, Librarian for Ancient & Medieval History and Religion, Butler Library
Location: Rare Book and Manuscript Library
6:00 pm, Monday February 4
Karl Steel, Brooklyn College
Ella Weed Room on the second floor of Milbank Hall, Barnard
6:00 pm, Monday March 2
Sara Lipton, Stony Brook University
Ella Weed Room on the second floor of Milbank Hall, Barnard
Refreshments will be served. Thank you!
Women and Community in the Ancien Régime: Traditional and New Media
JUNE 18-20, 2014
Barnard College Campus
This three-day conference investigates how women participated in and contributed to different kinds of community in medieval and early modern Europe. Featuring presentations based on texts and images in traditional manuscript and print format, as well as work that employs new technology and media projects, the conference will be interdisciplinary, and will consider the function and importance of female communities in the natural and social sciences, religion, literature, history, music, and fine arts. Sponsored by MARGOT, a long-term research project devoted to publishing fully searchable editions of texts from the French Middle Ages and the Early Modern period.
For more information and registration:
The Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship has announced that the winner of the 2013 prize for the best graduate student article on feminist scholarship on the Middle Ages is Gillian Adler. Gillian, a graduate of Barnard College, is a doctoral student in the English Department of UCLA, working with Christine Chism and Matthew Fisher. Her winning essay, “Female Intercession and the Shaping of Male Heroism in the Roman d’Enéas and Le Chevalier au Lion,” was written for a class taught by Zrinka Stahuljak of the UCLA French Department and will be published in a future issue of Medieval Feminist Forum. Congratulations!
Gillian Adler writes: "My paper, 'Female Intercession and the Shaping of Male Heroism in the Roman d’Enéas and Le Chevalier au Lion,' is concerned broadly with how women operate in twelfth-century French romance. I argue that the female intercessory figures who seem to wield verbal power and influence over the shape of these texts are assimilated into a narrative pattern that celebrates redemptive, foundational male heroes. Following the arguments of scholars like E. Jane Burns and Simon Gaunt, my paper looks at how the genre of romance subversively imagines an alternative to the masculinist model of homosociality in the chanson de geste tradition by privileging the place of female subjectivity in narrative, but ultimately constructs instances of female victimization that reinforce fantasies of male genealogical claims and chivalric repute. My interest in the intersection between romance and history developed in my studies at Barnard, when I was working with Professor Christopher Baswell in a course on the medieval imagination of antiquity and with Professor Timea Szell in a course on Boethius and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. My undergraduate work with these professors and others on everything from early medieval historiography to late medieval female devotional practices has continued to influence the shape of my current research in the UCLA English doctoral program."
About the Program
The Medieval and Renaissance program at Barnard College enables students to acquire a thorough knowledge of the most important aspects of Medieval or Renaissance civilizations and to gain an awareness of the interdependence of historical and cultural developments.
All images are drawn from manuscripts/books owned by Barnard College or Columbia University and made available by Columbia's Digital Scriptorium. Images used with permission. The image at the top is from Barnard College's MS1, a fourteenth-century Italian manuscript.