Staging Disability in Medieval Drama
From the blind man and Simon the leper in the Chester cycle to the "deformed" and "lamely" Richard III, early audiences experienced the staging of a range of disabilities and impairments in a variety of medieval contexts. This panel seeks to examine performance aspects of these portrayals and the social, religious, and cultural work that they do. How were disabilities performed, in either original or modern productions? How are categories of 'abled' and 'disabled' complicated through performance? Is there historical evidence for the inclusion of actors or audience members with disabilities? Do the plays of a specific cycle, topic, genre, or period offer a consistent attitude towards disabilities? Or are attitudes highly particularized? These are some questions the panel hopes to explore. While texts in any language are welcomed, presentations should be in English.
Please submit 250-word abstracts to Cameron Hunt McNabb at firstname.lastname@example.org by September 15.