"Researching the Autobiographical Impulse: New Texts and Methods - Medieval Autobiography Studies" Kalamazoo 2015: 9/15

full name / name of organization: 
Afrodesia McCannon

"Researching the Autobiographical Impulse: New Texts
and Methods in Medieval Autobiography Studies"

Kalamazoo 2015 Call for Papers:
50th International Congress on Medieval Studies
Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI, May 14-17, 2015.

This panel seeks papers on new ways of considering autobiographical writing in the Middle Ages. It seeks historically, archivally, and theoretically informed expansions, reinterpretations, and examples of the genre for the medieval period.

Autobiography is not a genre usually associated with the Middle Ages -- by many accounts the genre was not born until the eighteenth century -- though several well-known texts within the field of medieval studies are autobiographical in nature. Nevertheless, as a generic category, medieval autobiographical texts have been understudied. Even a brief perusal of scholarship on medieval autobiography will show an interest in the topic but a paucity of studies. This may be because autobiographical writing as we have come to define it was not a prevalent genre in the Middle Ages. The scarcity of works that consider the self in recognizably modern ways has, historically, only supported the supposition that the Middle Ages was the historical period just prior to the development of subjectivity. Recent scholarship has countered this supposition with many studies that revealed the complicated way in which medieval subjectivity functioned. This panel seeks to bring together research which reveals the complex nature of representing the autobiographical impulse in the Middle Ages. The session seeks to bring together research which reveals the complex nature of representing the autobiographical impulse in the Middle Ages.
Papers are welcome to explore any aspect of medieval writing of the self, especially including:

o Vernacular autobiography
o Women's writing
o Marginalia
o Anonymous writings
o Reported narratives
o Hybrid texts

Please follow the Medieval Institute's rules regarding participation and submission of abstracts:

http://www.wmich.edu/medieval/congress/submissions/index.html

Scholars wishing to submit should do so by 15 September 2014. Abstracts of no longer than 300 words and should be sent along with the Participant Information Form to afrodesia.mccannon@nyu.edu.