TEXTS AND TERRITORIES: THE CURIOUS HISTORY OF THE MIDDLE AGES

deadline for submissions: 
June 30, 2017
full name / name of organization: 
Hülya Taflı Düzgün, PhD, Medievalist, Deparment of English Language and Literature, Faculty of Letters, University of Erciyes, Kayseri, Turkey

The writing of a literary text is as a retrospective explanation of what is happening in the present and such writing is the deliberate re-creation in actual practice. This present includes social, cultural, religious and political events. The impact of immediate contemporary concerns is served to place a literary text at least partly outside the author’s control. The author responds to a given context of historical and cultural incident that limits his freedom to invent or adapt or explain. Of these contemporary concerns, first the literary text has to do with how cultural practices, cultural changes helped to create itself; second with what happens when specific historical events appear to model themselves on narrative structures, how those events can be given a conscious extra boost by narrative authors or patrons to make the parallels even closer. Across all for of those phenomena, there is a turning of history into literary narrative or literary narrative into history; therefore, literature and history live in each other’s pockets. The quantity of medieval texts that straddle the borderland between literature and history, what has been called a medieval fashion for pseudo-history, has been commented on repeatedly over the years. However, the broader implications of this phenomenon for modern understanding of medieval concepts of the past and historiography have been under explored.

This proposal suggests a forum of ideas on the link between literature and history as historicised fiction of fictionalised history has a particular prominent place in the literature of the Middle Ages. This proposal welcomes papers from disciplines with a focus on the Middle Ages or on the impact of medieval thinking in the modern period.

The topics of interest include but not limited to the following titles:

▪     From country to state: political ideas of land and the creation of nations

▪     Writing journeys: pilgrimages, crusades, travel writing, romances

▪     Visualizing the narratives: maps and illuminations

▪     National origins: creating identity through myth, chronicles, genealogies

▪     Representations of the landscape or nationality in art and music

▪      Beyond the Middle Ages: the influence of medieval concepts of territory on modern thought

Researchers are invited to submit on or before 30 June 2017, a brief biography, an abstract of 200 words, 5-6 keywords pertaining the topic, and a chapter proposal of 1,000 to 2,000 words clearly explaining the mission and concerns of the proposed chapter. The authors of the accepted proposals will be notified by 15 July 2017. The deadline for submitting full articles will be 15 September 2017. Please send the proposals to textsandterritories@gmail.com.