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Call for Papers: Medieval Congress 2014

The Pearl Kibre Medieval Study is currently accepting abstracts for its panel at the 49th International Congress on Medieval Studies at Kalamazoo (May 8 – 11, 2014) titled: “New Media and the Medieval Ages.”

The field of medieval studies has a relatively long and recognized history of scholarship assisted by technology. One of the first to merge new advances in technology with humanities scholarship was a medievalist, Fr. Roberto Busa, who in the 1940s conceived and developed the Index Thomisticus—a tool for performing text searches within the massive corpus of Aquinas’s works—in collaboration with IBM. Today dozens of digital resources are available for the medievalist: online collections of digitized manuscript images, full-text databases, online scholarly editions, and tens of thousands of books and journals.  One of the more recent and popular trends amongst medievalists in new media technology is the transformation of widely conceived medieval texts and data into new forms of media and technology. Projects such as Piers Plowman Electronic Archive and the Mapping Medieval Chester project exemplify only a few of the innovative applications of new media to our study of the medieval world.

Shared amongst these projects’ use of digital tools is an emphasis on remediation, taking data in one form and transforming and transposing it into another form of usable media. Additionally, through a greater focus on developments in contemporary technology, or as result of its proliferation, scholars and researchers have also become more attuned to the use, development, and creation of medieval technologies in the contexts of the written word, manuscripts, works of art, music, architecture, warfare, urban planning, and others.  The panel “New Media and the Middle Ages” aims at addressing some of the key concepts, questions, and methodologies concerning the convergences between developments in both new and old technologies and our study of the medieval past. Papers might address such questions as:  What insights might digital humanities allow in our study of medieval texts, architecture, music, manuscripts, and art?  What kinds of multimedia objects or events existed in the medieval period, and how might we as modern scholars still have access to them? What are the consequences of considering medieval manuscripts, texts, and works of art as multimedia works?

Other topics for presentations include:

  • Translation and dictionary projects
  • Digital projects in the visual and performance arts
  • Encoding of medieval manuscripts and printed texts
  • Management and preservation of digital resources
  • The cultural impact of the new media
  • The role of digital humanities in academic curricula
  • Funding and sustainability of long-term projects

Please submit your abstract of no more than 300 words by September 15, 2013.
Include your name and affiliation.
Papers must be 15-20 minutes in length.
Submissions should be emailed to medievalstudy@gmail.com along with a completed participant information form (found at http://www.wmich.edu/medieval/congress/submissions/index.html)

Pearl Kibre Medieval Study, Medieval Studies Certificate Program
CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY