Representations of the Ordinary in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods

full name / name of organization: 
North Carolina Colloquium in Medieval and Early Modern Studies

"Representations of the Ordinary in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods"

http://sites.duke.edu/representationsoftheordinary/

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The 16th Annual North Carolina Colloquium in Medieval and Early Modern Studies invites graduate students to submit proposals for twenty-minute paper presentations that investigate representations of everyday life––mimetic, descriptive, or prescriptive––from late antiquity through early modernity. How are the particularities of ordinary experience shown, shaped, distorted, or elided in poetry, prose, visual art, architecture, music, drama, and other forms of creative endeavor? For that matter, what constitutes the concept of the ordinary, and how does the history of this concept interweave with the development of realism, alongside other modes of representation?

In short, we shall explore what is at stake in representing the ordinary. For whether the representation works toward a form of distinction or a claim to community, it cannot be neutral. We encourage participants to explore an array of topics within this region of inquiry. (See list below. Note that it does not purport to be comprehensive. All pertinent concerns are welcome.)

The North Carolina Colloquium in Medieval and Early Modern Studies is a cooperative venture between UNC-Chapel Hill's and Duke University's programs in Medieval and Renaissance Studies. We seek contributions from a broad range of humanistic and social-scientific disciplines––including, but not limited to History, Philosophy, Theology, Literary Studies, Linguistics, Cultural Studies, Political Theory, Sociology, Anthropology, Art History, Gender Studies, Sexuality Studies, and Food Studies.

Interested graduate students should submit 250-word abstracts to representingtheordinary@gmail.com no later than Monday, January 4, 2016. The body of the email should include the presenter's name, institutional affiliation, and contact information, but the abstract itself should be attached as a PDF or MS Word Document. Decisions will be announced by Monday, January 18, 2016.

Possible Subjects:

temporalities of the everyday, the diurnal
the ordinary in its tragic/comic aspects
mystery plays, guilds
liturgical practice, parochial variety
agency, habit, praxis
commerce, the quotidian, homo economicus
play, the aleatory, homo ludens
jokes and insults
song and dance
visions of language––ordinary and ideal, private and universal materialities of communication––the body, gesture, physiognomy
pedagogy and learning
rise of the vernacular, semantic shift, lexicography
reading practices, history of reading, marginalia
gender, sexuality, and desire
manuals and guides for agrarian, domestic, or courtly life households, lords and servants
the oikos and the polis
the ordinary and modernity; everyday life, pre/postmodern
the place of death and grief in life
representations of reality in writing
realism in painting and sculpture
realism and nominalism; the generic and the particular
common spaces, urban and rural
the built environment, orientation
imposed structures, functional objects
mechanization and machinery
print, mass production and dissemination