Bodies in Motion

deadline for submissions: 
April 1, 2019
full name / name of organization: 
Medieval and Renaissance Graduate Student Association (OSU)
contact email: 

The Ohio State University’s Medieval and Renaissance Graduate Student Association (MRGSA) is currently accepting abstracts for its sixth annual graduate student symposium. This symposium will take place on Friday, September 13th, 2019 at OSU in Columbus, Ohio. Prospective papers will be considered by those working in assorted subfields of Medieval and Renaissance studies, and particular attention will be paid to proposals that examine the specific theme of Bodies in Motion as outlined below.


Numerous scholars in several pre-modern fields have been investigating how the human body functioned during these eras, while others have been examining moving bodies in a more ambiguated sense, as in bodies of knowledge or the body politic. Since cultural, social, political, and economic systems are constantly in motion, and peoples, languages, and material situations exist in states of flux, we are interested in exploring questions on how that flux was experienced. How did pre-modern societies understand the motions and abilities of their physical bodies? For that matter, how were disabled bodies perceived and understood by both disabled and able-bodied alike? How about trans bodies? What impact did the advancement of newly conceived astronomical systems have on the various classes that received them? How did the development of new political and religious bodies impact movements between stability and upheaval? Other subjects of interest may include but are not limited to:


Cosmic Movement

Nature in Motion

Cultural Exchange

Transforming Identities

Gender Embodiment






Visual Art


Fashion Trends


Textual Transmission

Pre-modern Reception in Subsequent Eras

Abstracts of no more than 250 words should be sent to by Monday, April 1st, 2019. All submissions should include a separate document containing the title of the paper as well as the author’s name, institutional affiliation, and contact information. Chosen participants will be notified by e-mail no later than April 22nd, 2019. Presenters should plan to deliver their papers in an approximately 20-minute oral presentation.