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Illness, Healing and the Body in the Middle Ages

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Appel à contribution – Illness, Healing and the Body in the Middle Ages


Graduate Conference in Medieval Studies at Princeton University

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Program in Medieval Studies at Princeton University invites submissions for its eighteenth annual graduate conference in Princeton, New Jersey. We are also pleased to announce that this year’s keynote speaker will be Carolyn Walker Bynum, Professor of the History of Medieval Europe at the Institute for Advanced Studies, also in Princeton.

 

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This year’s conference is dedicated to exploring the themes of illness, healing, and the body in the broadest possible sense. Among them are individual and collective experiences of disease, practices of bodily and spiritual healing, and the complex notions related to embodiment itself. We welcome presentations dealing with both reality and its representations. Our goal is to assemble panels reflecting a balanced awareness of both the basic human experiences our medieval predecessors share with us and the ideas and cultural practices that separate our world from theirs. In keeping with the Program’s aim to promote interdisciplinary exchange among medievalists, we encourage proposals from a variety of time periods, geographies, and disciplines.

 

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Topics might include, but are not limited to:

>* Disease, injuries, and symptoms of illness
>* Sex, generation, heredity, and childbirth
>* Death and mourning
>* Mental illness and spiritual health
>* Traditions of folk and learned medicine, and their practitioners
>* Sites of healing, from saints’ shrines to hospitals
>* Defense and discipline of the body
>* Depictions of the body in art and literature
>* The miraculous bodies of the saints
>* Gender and the body
>* Notions of the relationship between body and soul
>* The body as metaphor
>* The construction of « foreign » bodies (Muslims, Jews, and others)
>* Incarnation, embodiment, and materiality
>* Other sorts of bodies or corpora (animals, objects, texts)

In order to support participation of speakers from outside the northeastern United States, we are offering a limited number of modest subsidies to help offset the cost of travel to Princeton. Financial assistance may not be available for every participant; funding priority goes to those who have the furthest to travel. Every speaker will have the option of staying with a resident graduate student as an alternative to paying for a hotel room.
Interested graduate students should submit abstracts of no more than 500 words to Rebecca Johnson (rwjohnso@princeton.edu) by February 25, 2011. All applicants will be notified by March 5, 2011. Presentations should be no longer than 20 minutes.

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