"Forging the Medieval" in Institutions: Call for Special Issue Contributions

deadline for submissions: 
February 28, 2023
full name / name of organization: 
postmedieval / guest editors Rebecca Menmuir and Hannah Armstrong
contact email: 



Proposals for short essays (c. 3500-8000 words) are warmly welcomed, on the topic of “forging the medieval” in institutions. In galleries, museums, schools, universities, libraries, archives, or other institutions, how is the medieval past forged? How is it created and curated, presented and (mis)represented, through the institution’s objects and the concept of the institution itself?


About the contribution and cluster:

This contribution will feature in a forthcoming issue of postmedieval, which has been accepted for publication. The issue is an essay cluster on the topic of “Medieval Forgeries / Forging the Medieval”. The cluster as a whole brings together medieval forgeries (i.e. those created during the medieval period) and forgeries of the medieval (i.e. works produced after the Middle Ages which seek to ‘forge’ the medieval in some way). All other contributions have been confirmed, and range from forged medieval documents to an examination of how Arthurian myth-making takes place at archaeological sites. Final contributions will be due in May 2023.


Proposals might include, but are not limited to:

  • The various meanings of the word “forge” in the context of institutions;
  • Particular objects in institutions which are inauthentic, or which contribute to the forging of the medieval past in some way;
  • The role of the institution in forging the medieval past;
  • Collections in institutions related to the medieval: their history and role in forging the medieval;
  • Current debates about fakes and issues of authenticity and truth, with some focus on the medieval period;
  • Pedagogy and forging the medieval;
  • Institutions and access to the medieval.


About the journal:

postmedieval welcomes experimental scholarship (for instance, dialogues or experiments in scholarly form) as well as ‘traditional’ scholarly articles. It also aims to ‘[reach] across disciplines, language traditions, locales, modes of inquiry, and levels of access’ (http://www.palgrave.com/gp/journal/41280). As such, the essay cluster is broad in its geographical and chronological scope, with representatives from across academic disciplines. Anyone with an interest in the topic is welcome to propose a contribution, regardless of background.


Submission details:

Please send a short (c. 200 word) abstract of your proposed essay, and a brief introduction of yourself, to the guest editors: Rebecca Menmuir (r.menmuir@qmul.ac.uk) and Hannah Armstrong (hannah.armstrong@york.ac.uk). The deadline for proposals is February 28, 2023.