Spreading the Light Conference

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Dr Sarah James, University of Kent, UK
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Spreading the Light: Mapping the Vernacular Elucidarium in Medieval England
15th-17th November 2013

Call for Papers

About the Conference
The conference will take place at the Cathedral Lodge, based in the Cathedral close at Canterbury, Kent. It forms the concluding event of the AHRC-funded research project ‘Spreading the Light: Mapping the Vernacular Elucidarium in Medieval England’ . The project as a whole seeks to understand how this important text of basic theology was produced and disseminated in England across the Middle Ages, and to place it within the broader context of late-medieval concerns for pastoral care and the consequent production of vernacular theology. Our research focuses on manuscripts of the text in both Middle English and medieval French, and among its outputs is a web-based descriptive catalogue of all extant manuscripts, which will be previewed during the conference. Keynote lectures will be given by Professor John Thompson (Queen’s University, Belfast) and Professor Keith Busby (University of Wisconsin-Madison).

Proposals for papers are now invited. We are interested in receiving papers which relate closely to the themes of our research, but also those which address the issues of the production and transmission of theological texts more broadly. Topics might include:
• the patronage, production, dissemination and reception of the Elucidarium, whether in Latin, English, French, or any other vernaculars
• the extent to which vernacular theological writings in English, Anglo-Norman and French map onto contrasting cultural and religious concerns for their respective readerships
• ways in which particular instances of textual translation, adaptation or transmission can be linked to culturally specific historical moments
• the study of late-medieval vernacular theological manuscripts more broadly
• problems of using manuscript evidence to identify real and intended audiences
• studies of individual manuscripts

These are suggestions only, and papers which in any way address the broad themes of the project are welcomed. Interdisciplinary contributions are warmly encouraged.

Proposals should be no more than 500 words in length and should be submitted to both the conference organizers by 8th March 2013.

Conference Organizers:
Dr Sarah James (s.james@kent.ac.uk) and Dr Huw Grange (h.r.grange@kent.ac.uk), Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, University of Kent.

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