CFC – History, Medicine and Health. Thematic collection on “Nutrition”.

History, Medicine and Health. Thematic collection on “Nutrition”.
Deadline for submissions: 10 October 2019.
One of the two 2020 issues of the History, Medicine and Health journal will be devoted to a thematic collection on nutrition from a social and cultural perspective relevant to the scientific focus of the journal.
For about twenty years, food has not only been considered in its economic and nutritional aspect, but it has also been regarded as “a cultural asset” (F. Braudel), thus becoming a real field of historical investigations allowing to understand a given society. More specifically, the prevalence of current debates on nutrition as related to health now highlights some stakes which raise new research challenges for historical analyses and which the journal will explore in this collection.
The nutrition-health relationship may be developed from different standpoints:
  • Public health: people’s responses to such problems as hygiene, the environment and food contamination are social indicators allowing to analyze the public authorities’ strategies and choices regarding their management of these issues.
  • Dietetics: this must be understood in the Hippocratic sense of the term, namely as eating habits that can ensure good health. Then comes the question of what can be considered dietetic, but also of what can jeopardize good health, namely food crises, malnutrition (under or over consumption) as well as eating disorders (anorexia and bulimia, for example).
  • The distribution of food products and processing techniques: this distribution can be economic, (within the frame of trade exchanges), but also cultural, (through the influences and / or transmission of the know-hows in food production, exploitation and uses). This question can lead on to the research challenges posed by the food industry and its effects.
  • Nutrition as an identity marker: eating habits are first of all social habits that can be inclusive and exclusive as well. Such social interactions may be studied through different categories, (social, cultural and ethnic ones), and different types of individuals, (men, women, children, old people).
  • Food symbolism: the incorporation principle, according to which he or she who eats ingests the properties of the products they swallow, is a clue allowing to understand rejections, taboos and the therapeutic uses of some foods.
The last two research tracks make it possible to open up reflections on nutrition as a means to claim a way of life. It will thus be possible to take some interest in ascetism and vegetarianism as well, in so far as the chosen diet partakes of a voluntary and thoughtful choice that is relevant to some ideology.
This nutrition collection aims to put forward both diachrony and synchrony. That is why it will welcome proposals spanning all historical times and all cultural and geographical spaces.
Submissions focusing on this topic but more devoted to the critical presentation of textual or iconographic sources may also be proposed for the “Sources and documents” section of the journal.
History, Medicine and Health publishes papers written in French, English or Spanish. The contribution proposals for the “Sources and documents” section can be submitted in any of these three languages, but the printed publication of these texts will be in their French translation exclusively: however, the digital version can be bilingual.
Submissions cannot exceed 45,000 characters, (spaces included), for papers, vs. 10,000 for the presentations of the sources texts.
They must be sent to Céline Barthonnat (celine.barthonnat [@]
For any scientific question concerning this call, you may contact Alexandra Kovacs (alexandra.kovacs [@], Hervé Guillemain (herve.guillemain [@] or Nahema Hanafi (nahema.hanafi [@]
Instructions to authors are available on the journal website at the following address:

New Book – Medieval Disability Sourcebook – edited by Cameron Hunt McNabb – Punctum Books – 2019

Contributors Danielle AllorMaura BaileyLucy BarnhouseAutumn BattistaPaul A. BroylesEliza BuhrerM.W. BychowskiKaren M. CookAshley CorlissLeigh Ann CraigEmma E. DuncanWill EggersHeide EstesJoshua R. EylerMoira FitzgibbonsAnne GalanaudPierre GalanaudRachael GillibrandEammon GosselinBrandon W. HawkÁrmann JakobssonKolfinna JónatansdóttirAnne M. KoenigRebecca LaughlinKara Larson MaloneyMandy Lowell AlbertCameron Hunt McNabbSara MollerFrank M. NapolitanoSarah Edwards ObenaufLeah Pope ParkerTory V. PearmanAlicia ProtzeAlison PurnellWill RogersMarit RonenRose A. SawyerJulie SingerKisha G. TracyKurt SchreyerShayne SimahkTaylor SpeckerAlyssa StantonJeffery G. StoyanoffKellyn Welch

The field of disability studies significantly contributes to contemporary discussions of the marginalization of and social justice for individuals with disabilities. However, what of disability in the past? The Medieval Disability Sourcebook explores what medieval texts have to say about disability, both in their own time and for the present.

This interdisciplinary volume combines historical records, medical texts, and religious accounts of saints’ lives and miracles, as well as poetry, prose, drama, and manuscript images to demonstrate the varied and complicated attitudes medieval societies had about disability. Far from recording any monolithic understanding of disability in the Middle Ages, these contributions present a striking range of voices—to, from, and about those with disabilities—and such diversity only confirms how disability permeated (and permeates) every aspect of life.

The Medieval Disability Sourcebook is designed for use inside the undergraduate or graduate classroom or by scholars interested in learning more about the field. Most texts are presented in modern English, though some are preserved in Middle English and many are given in side-by-side translations for greater study. Each entry is prefaced with an academic introduction to disability within the text as well as a bibliography for further study.


I) Introduction

By Cameron Hunt McNabb

II) Historical and Medical Documents

  • York Cause Paper E.92: Redyng c. Boton By Alison Purnell
  • Mental Competency Inquisitions from Medieval England By Eliza Buhrer
  • Nuremberg Town Records: Select Entries Pertaining to the Mad and Intellectually Disabled By Anne M. Koenig
  • Tax Relief Requests from Medieval Dijon By Anne Galanaud and Pierre Galanaud
  • Examining for Leprosy in the Fifteenth Century By Lucy Barnhouse Arzneibuch, “On Madness,” Ortolf of Baierland By Anne M. Koenig

III) Religious Texts

Biblical Excerpts

  • Selected Episodes on Healing and Disability from the Vulgate Bible – Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John By Will Eggers
  • Miracles in Apocryphal Infancy Narratives By Brandon W. Hawk

Biblical Commentary

  • Catholic Homilies 1.10, Ælfric of Eynsham By Brandon W. Hawk
  • The City of God against the Pagans, Augustine of Hippo By Leah Pope Parker

Miracle Accounts

  • A Miracle of Thomas Becket: De puero syntectino (Concerning a boy suffering from a wasting disease), William of Canterbury By Rose A. Sawyer
  • Njáls Saga By Kolfinna Jónatansdóttir
  • The Life and Passion of William of Norwich, Thomas of Monmouth By Sarah Edwards
  • Obenauf Testimony from the Canonization Proceedings of Charles of Blois By Leigh Ann Craig
  • On the Miracle of Saint Thomas Aquinas, Bernard Gui By Leigh Ann Craig

Saints’ Vitae

  • The Prose Life of Cuthbert, Bede By Marit Ronen
  • The Life of St. Margaret of Antioch By Leah Pope Parker
  • Life of Mary of Oegines By Kisha G. Tracy and Alicia Protze

IV) Poetry

  • Bisclavret, Marie de France By Kisha G. Tracy
  • The Book of Hope, Alain Chartier By Julie Singer

The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucer

  • The Merchant’s Tale By Moira Fitzgibbons
  • The Man of Law’s Prologue and Tale By Paul A. Broyles
  • The Wife of Bath’s Portrait, Prologue, and Tale By Tory V. Pearman
  • Dame Sirith By Danielle Allor
  • Tale of Constance, John Gower By Will Rogers
  • Complaint, Thomas Hoccleve By Will Rogers
  • Sir Orfeo By Joshua R. Eyler and Emma E. Duncan

V) Prose

  • The Book of Margery Kempe By M. W. Bychowski

Ecclesiastical History, Bede

  • Menstruation, Infirmity, Religious Observance, and The Miracles of King Oswald By Heide Estes
  • Physical Disability, Muteness, Pregnancy, Possession, and Alcoholism By Maura Bailey, Autumn Battista, Ashley Corliss, Eammon Gosselin, Rebecca Laughlin, Sara Moller, Shayne Simahk, Taylor Specker, Alyssa Stanton, Kellyn Welch, and Kisha G. Tracy
  • The Lancelot-Grail Cycle Evadeam, the Dwarf Knight By Kara Larson Maloney
  • Morkinskinna By Ármann Jakobsson
  • Heimskringla, Snorri Sturluson Ólafs saga helga By Ármann Jakobsson
  • The Prose Edda, Snorri Sturluson By Kolfinna Jónatansdóttir

VI) Drama

The Chester Cycle

  • Cure of the Blind Man By Kurt Schreyer
  • Christ and the Leper By Kurt Schreyer
  • The York Cycle Entry into Jerusalem By Frank M. Napolitano
  • The N-Town Plays The Nativity By Jeffery G. Stoyanoff
  • Croxton Play of the Sacrament By Cameron Hunt McNabb Lippijn By Mandy Lowell Albert

VII) Images

  • The Smithfield Decretals By Rachael Gillibrand
  • Visible and Invisible Impairments in Images of Medieval Musicians By Karen M. Cook


Cameron Hunt McNabb is Assoc. Professor of English at Southeastern University. Her primary research interests include disability studies and early drama, and she has published in numerous journals, including Early Theatre, Neophilologus, Studies in Philology, and Pedagogy. Her chapter “Staging Disability in Medieval Drama” is forthcoming in the Ashgate Research Companion to Medieval Disability Studies (Routledge, 2018). She is a strong advocate for undergraduate research, and she and her students have contributed two entries to the Medieval Disability Glossary.

CFP – “Visualizing the Other in the Late Medieval and Early Modern Art (1300–1550)”: 14 –16 November 2019, Ostrava, Czech Republic

The University of Ostrovo and the Vivarium – Centre for Research of the Medieval Society and Culture invites art historians, historians, philosophers and cultural anthropologists to participate in the international conference Visualizing the Other in the Late Medieval and Early Modern Art (1300-1550).

As Medieval Europe was ethnically and religiously diverse, we seek papers exploring the artistic, architectural, and linguistic evidence for the social, cultural, and politcal integration of ethnically and religiously diverse communites.

The aim of the meeting is to stimulate on academic dialogue on the percept on and ex­pression of otherness / other in the late Middle Ages and Early Modern Europe, considering its social, religious and ethnie diversity interactions, coexistence, but also delimitation as means of self-definition and protection.

Nevertheless, the late medievol visualization of the other works with usual stereotypes and cultural images when “the other” is understood as potentially dongerous, transgressing norms and order, and thus negative. Yet the dialogue between them, and us between inclusion and exclusion reveals important relations in the structure of late medieval society.

The perception of the other in medieval art, mentality and culture needs to be discussed and treated as a dynamic intellectual and socio-cultural process (“the process of othering”) in a multi-disciplinary format ranging from texts and image- text schemes to images and fine arts. The following questions can be discussed:

On which occasion was “the other presented as a positive enrichment, was diversity understood as God’s inscrutable, but no doubt wise creation? On which occasion was it understood as potentially dangerous, transgressing norms and order, and thus as negative power? How the late medieval visualization of “the other” worked? How the stereotypes of the good as beauty vs. evil as ugly monstrosity and deformity, e.g. depictions of members of “other” religious communities (Roman Catholic Christians vs. reformers, Jews, Muslims), women, and people “on the edge” has been produced and used?


  • Visualizing the religious otherness (visual and textual sources)
  • Ethnic, regional and racial diversity and its reception in visual culture
  • Gender and sexuality as distancing strategies
  • Monstrosity and deformity as a visual expression of otherness
  • Evidence of social transgressions, breaking norms and rules
  • Medieval theory of perception of the other
  • Otherness in profane visual culture and marginal iconography
  • Animals used as exempt for sin, transgression and malevolent behavior
  • Exotic, oriental, and other distant places as a source of otherness
  • The other understanding of the world: naturel sciences and metaphysics
  • The other in Latin world as participants of prosperity
  • Conversion and consequences in the science and culture of central European Christians

The conference will take place from the 14th to 16th November 2019 at Ostrava University, Czech Republic.

We welcome submissions for 20- minute oral presentations. Please, send your proposed title and an abstract of 300 words of maximum length with your name, contact and institution details to Daniela Rywikovà ( by 20th July 2019.


Prof. Waldemar Delugo (University of Ostrava)

Dr Jan Dienstbier (Czech Acodemy of Science)

Dr Teresa Poe (University of central Oklahoma)

Dr Daniela Rywikovà (University of Ostrava)

Dr Maria Theisen (Austrian Academy of Science)

New book – Old Age in Early Medieval England A Cultural History by Thijs Porck ed. by Boydell and Brewer

First full-length study of the notion and concept of old age in early medieval England.

How did Anglo-Saxons reflect on the experience of growing old? Was it really a golden age for the elderly, as has been suggested? This first full survey of the Anglo-Saxon cultural conceptualisation of old age, as manifested and reflected in the texts and artwork of the inhabitants of early medieval England, presents a more nuanced and complicated picture. The author argues that although senescence was associated with the potential for wisdom and pious living, the Anglo-Saxons also anticipated various social, psychological and physical repercussions of growing old. Their attitude towards elderly men and women – whether they were saints, warriors or kings – was equally ambivalent.
Multidisciplinary in approach, this book makes use of a wide variety of sources, ranging from the visual arts to hagiography, homiletic literature and heroic poetry. Individual chapters deal with early medieval definitions of the life cycle; the merits and drawbacks of old age as represented in Anglo-Saxon homilies and wisdom poetry; the hagiographic topos of elderly saints; the portrayal of grey-haired warriors in heroic literature; Beowulf as a mirror for elderly kings; and the cultural roles attributed to old women.

Table of contents:

Definitions of old age
Merits of old age
Drawbacks of old age
frode fyrnwitan: Old saints in Anglo-Saxon hagiography
hare hilderincas: Old warriors in Anglo-Saxon England
ealde eðelweardas: Beowulf as a mirror of elderly kings
gamole geomeowlan: Old women in Anglo-Saxon England

THIJS PORCK is Assistant Professor of Medieval English, Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society, Leiden University. 

An e-book version of this title is available (9781787444690), to libraries through a number of trusted suppliers. See here for a full list of our partners.

Keywords: Anglo-Saxon StudiesMedieval HistoryMedieval Literature

More info on the editor’s website

CFP – “Mental Health in the Medieval and Early Modern World” – The Annual Conference of the Perth Medieval and Renaissance Group and the UWA Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies

SATURDAY 19 OCTOBER 2019 – The University of Western Australia

Keynote: Yasmin Haskell (UWA)

Modern stereotypes abound regarding how mental health was perceived during the medieval and early modern period ranging from mental illness being caused by sin to the idea that the attainment of mental wellbeing could only be achieved through the balancing of the bodily humours. But mental health was a more complex and expansive subject of discourse throughout the period that was widely explored in medical treatises, religious tracts and sermons, and prominent in art and literature, which speaks to a more subtle understanding of the human mental state.

This conference aims to look at both the changing and continuing perceptions of mental health throughout the medieval and early modern period.

We welcome papers from the fields of book culture and manuscript studies, history, material culture, medicine, art, and literature, but not limited to, the following broad headings:

  • Suicide Marginal lives Melancholy
  • Depression Insanity
  • Mental disorder Rapture
  • Ecstasy Bodily humours Addiction Anguish Therapies Meditation
  • Mindfulness
  • Well-being Imagination Dreams
  • Visions
  • Memory Criminality Self-harm Solitude Natural
  • Kind
  • Unnatural

The conference organisers invite proposals for 20-minute papers. Please send a paper title, 250-word abstract, and a short (no more than 100-word) biography to: by 31 May 2019.