Kalamazoo ICMS 2021 - Whatever Happened to Baby Cain? Ambiguous Childhood in Medieval Literature

deadline for submissions: 
September 15, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Alexandra Claridge


Growing up is a perennial feature of human societies. While anxieties surrounding childhood are universal, the manifestations of these concerns vary between cultures. This series of sessions proposes to shed light upon the nexus of ambiguity surrounding the medieval child, as depicted in contemporaneous literature. We invite abstracts for papers that will explore the representation of childhood in texts of any language, genre, and period within the Middle Ages. Topics may include, but are not limited to:




• Historical notions of education, child-rearing, and ʻgood




• Non-human and/or monstrous children.


• Infantilised adults and inescapable childhood.


• Environments and spaces that are (un)suitable for children.


• Theological and medical approaches to conception,


pregnancy, birth, and infancy.


• Pedagogy and didacticism in texts for and about children.


• The abject and uncanny child.


• Engagement with sensory experiences of


growing up.


• Interactions between children and non-human




• Depictions of the divine and demonic child.


• Children with adult roles: kings, saints, knights,




We welcome submissions from scholars of any level and particularly encourage applications from PGRs, ECRs, and


independent scholars. Papers should be 15-20 minutes long.




Please submit a 250 word abstract to one of our three sessions via the ICMS portal (https://icms.confex.com/icms/2021am/cfp.cgi) by 15th September 2020. For any questions, please email A.V.C.Claridge@liverpool.ac.uk.