CFPs on disability for the International Congress on Medieval Studies – Kalamazoo (and online) 2022

Medieval Sermon Studies I: Disease, Health, and Sermons

Contact Person: Jessalynn Bird ; jbird@saintmarys.edu

Principal Sponsoring Organization: International Medieval Sermon Studies Society

This session explores the rhetoric, metaphors, and physical realities of spiritual, mental, and physical illness in the medieval period in pastoral literature and sermons. Discourse between pastoralia and other genres is encouraged (liturgy, hagiography, miracle stories, vernacular literature, hospital records and medical treatises).

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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Of Pestilences and Plagues: Sickness in the Medieval Court

Contact Person: Shawn Cooper

Principal Sponsoring Organization: International Courtly Literature Society (ICLS), North American Branch

The International Courtly Literature Society (North American Branch) invites paper proposals for a sponsored session: Of Pestilences and Plagues: Sickness in the Medieval Court. We welcome submissions addressing the depiction of illness in courtly literatures, chronicles, histories, and other artistic media. Comparative readings of medieval and modern depictions of sickness in the setting of the medieval court are also welcome. Presenters will receive a year’s membership in the ICLS-NAB, and may be eligible for presentation-related grants and awards of the society.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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Trauma, Disability, and the Anchorhold

Contact Person: Michelle Sauer

Principal Sponsoring Organization: International Anchoritic Society

Trauma studies and work that links studies of disability and trauma finds ample representation in the texts and contexts of anchorites, and their frequent citation of Christ’s wounds and the valorization of sickness, pain, and distress in the anchorhold. For this panel, we are seeking papers that interrogate the role and use of trauma and its attendant concerns—witnessing, wounds, pain—in the study of anchorites, their texts, and the responses to both. Papers are welcome that touch on the material realities of these figures and their receptions, or which concentrate on the figurative significance of trauma.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021.
 
 
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The « New Paradigm » of Plague Studies: Expanded Geographies and Chronologies of the Medieval Pandemics

Contact Person: William York

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Medica: The Society for the Study of Healing in the Middle Ages

In 2014, Monica Green wrote “the field of historical plague studies … must be redefined in three dimensions: its geographic extent, its chronological extent, and the methodological registers we use to investigate it.” Since then, work on the full extent of both the 1st and 2nd Plague Pandemics has continued as Green anticipated, now encompassing the Mongol Empire (and perhaps the Xiongnu before them) and extending, perhaps, into sub-Saharan Africa. Whereas prior scholarship focused on the Mediterranean and Europe, pandemic studies must necessarily cast a wider net. This panel invites presentations of the latest work in the field.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021.
 
 
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The Globalization of Medieval Medicine: Ideas, Authorities, and Products 1000-1600

Contact Person: William York

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Medica: The Society for the Study of Healing in the Middle Ages

This panel explores the globalization of medieval medicine, beginning in the eleventh century via the Silk Road and continuing through the early modern era of exploration and discovery. It will look at how medieval European medical practice and theory changed due to the influx of new ideas, practices, and pharmaceutical products. Panelists will also consider how medical consumerism and the transmission of ideas were affected by economic, religious, cultural, political, and technological changes, such as the advent of printed medical texts and the popularization of medical authorities outside of the ancient canon.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021.
 
 
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Age in Monastic Life

Contact Person: Amelia Kennedy ; amelia.kennedy@uni-graz.at

From child oblates to venerable seniors, age plays a crucial role in monastic life. Yet it is easy to overlook mentions of age in historical sources as merely recording objective facts. This panel explores age as a socially constructed category within the monastery, asking how “age” was calculated, asserted, and negotiated. We invite proposals for 15-20-minute papers analyzing concepts of age and the life-cycle in medieval monasticism: How did monastic authors understand the aging process? How were relationships among different generations governed? What are the relationships between age and gender, authority, disability, or spirituality?

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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From Farm to Sick Bed: Food, Illness, and Medicine in the Medieval West

Contact Person: John Bollweg ; admin@mensetmensa.org

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Mens et Mensa: Society for the Study of Food in the Middle Ages

From epidemics traced to so-called “wet markets” dealing in food and medicine to the pursuit of longevity through the “Mediterranean Diet” — foods, diet, and regional foodways to be presented as both a cause and cure of illness. For this session, we seek papers on any examples (historical, literary, natural philosophical, religious, etc.), from Europe or the Mediterranean basin, in the years 500 C.E. through 1600 C.E., of food or drink as either the creator or the corrector of diseases physical or moral, individual or communal. This session continues the theme of a Fall 2021 conference.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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Disability, Disease, and Health: New Voices, New Directions

Contact Person: Leah Parker

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Society for the Study of Disability in the Middle Ages

Paper proposals on any topic relating to disability, disease, and/or health will be welcomed, on any period between c. 500–1500 and on any geographical area. Topics might include, but are not limited to: lived experiences of impairment, medicine, healing, stigma, pandemic, contagion, textual or visual representations of bodily difference, archaeological evidence of impairment, theological/political/social attitudes toward disability, the body in law, etc. Presenters may be emerging in terms of their career (e.g., graduate students or early career researchers) or emerging by bringing their research into a new direction (i.e., newly engaging with the study of disability, disease, and/or health).

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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Medicine and Health Care in Medieval Iberia

Contact Person: Elisa Manzo

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Association of Graduate and Early Career Scholars of Medieval Iberia (AGECSMIberia)

Studies on premodern medicine have had a remarkable increase in the last decades and the recent global pandemic has done no more than further increase this trend. This session invites contributions on medicine and health care in Medieval Iberia from graduate and early career scholars, coming from a range of backgrounds and working on different aspects of this field. Potential topics may include: continuity or disruption in the medical practice between Roman and Post-Roman Iberia, regulations to safeguard physicians and patients, Jewish medicine in Christian and Arabic milieus, women healers’ status, the social effects of the so-called “medical pluralism”.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 
 
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Medicine in the Global Middle Ages

Contact Person: Meg Oldman ; oldman@tarleton.edu

Principal Sponsoring Organization: Medieval Makars Society

After a year, the world is beginning to see an end to the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout it all, we have heard various ways to cope with or test our resilience against the novel coronavirus, from logical public health recommendations such as mask wearing and hand washing to abstract suggestions like injecting bleach and holding our breaths for 10 seconds. Suggestions such as these are nothing new. Prior to public health initiatives we know today, folklore was an important method of transmission for medical knowledge. We are looking for papers that explore global transmissions of medical knowledge through folkloric methods.

Deadline for New Submissions: Wednesday, September 15, 2021
 

Seminar – Uncommon Bodies – « The Trajectories of Early Modern Disability Studies » ; Simone Chess, “Hacking Sex in the Renaissance.” Lindsey Row-Heyveld, “Careless Arden: Able-bodiedness in As You Like It.” – 10-12 Feb 2021 – Event Free on Zoom

 
Uncommon Bodies: CSPW/CEMH Event
 
Please join us for two Uncommon Bodies events on disability studies and early modern sexuality, featuring Lindsey Row-Heyveld and Simone Chess


If you’re thinking you that you may come, we would like to know! Even if you ultimately can’t make it, we want to ensure that accommodations are available for you. So please RSVP.

When: Wed. Feb. 10, 2021 — Behind-the-scenes methods talk (11AM-12:30 PM CST)
and Friday, Feb. 12, 2021 Double header! (12- 1:30 PM CST)
Where: Zoom (please RSVP for link or check on the Center for Early Modern History UMN site)
Who: This event is free and open to the public, and to anyone who might be interested in disability studies, disability community, and early modern scholarship

Feb 10:
« The Trajectories of Early Modern Disability Studies »
Topics include: what brought us each to early modern disability studies? Where was early modern disability studies when we first met and first began this work? What has changed, in the field and in our own thinking? Where do we see gaps or space for growth? How did we pick the topics we’ll be talking about as models for what might be coming next in the field?


Feb. 12:
These talks approach the question of what might come next in early modern disability studies from two very different angles: Lindsey Row-Heyveld’s work on able-bodiedness and inattention explores a disability studies that could help us understand the construction of normalcy, modeling ways that disability knowledges apply broadly outside of the usual canon of early modern disability texts, while Simone Chess’s work on adaptive sex practices experiments with a disability studies centered in embodiment, modeling an increased specificity about disabled practices in history. Despite these very different approaches, the papers dovetail in their shared commitment to envisioning a capacious, creative, and multi-vocal future for early modern disability studies.

Simone Chess, “Hacking Sex in the Renaissance.”
Lindsey Row-Heyveld, “Careless Arden: Able-bodiedness in As You Like It.”
 
 

New Book – Sara Ritchey, Sharon Strocchia (eds), Gender, Health, and Healing, 1250-1550 – Amsterdam University Press

Sara Ritchey, Sharon Strocchia (eds), Gender, Health, and Healing, 1250-1550

This path-breaking collection offers an integrative model for understanding health and healing in Europe and the Mediterranean from 1250 to 1550. By foregrounding gender as an organizing principle of healthcare, the contributors challenge traditional binaries that ahistorically separate care from cure, medicine from religion, and domestic healing from fee-for-service medical exchanges. The essays collected here illuminate previously hidden and undervalued forms of healthcare and varieties of body knowledge produced and transmitted outside the traditional settings of university, guild, and academy. They draw on non-traditional sources — vernacular regimens, oral communications, religious and legal sources, images and objects — to reveal additional locations for producing body knowledge in households, religious communities, hospices, and public markets. Emphasizing cross-confessional and multilinguistic exchange, the essays also reveal the multiple pathways for knowledge transfer in these centuries. Gender, Health, and Healing, 1250-1550 provides a synoptic view of how gender and cross-cultural exchange shaped medical theory and practice in later medieval and Renaissance societies.

Introduction – Gendering Medieval Health and Healing: New Sources, New Perspectives
Sara Ritchey and Sharon Strocchia
 
PART 1: Sources of Religious Healing
 
Caring by the Hours: The Psalter as a Gendered Health care Technology
Sara Ritchey
 
Female Saints as Agents of Female Healing: Gendered Practices and Patronage in the Cult of St. Cunigunde
Iliana Kandzha
 
PART 2: Producing and Transmitting Medical Knowledge
 
Blood, Milk and Breastbleeding: The Humoral Economy of Women’s Bodies in Late Medieval Medicine
Montserrat Cabré and Fernando Salmón
 
Care of the Breast in the Late Middle Ages: The Tractatus de Passionibus Mamillarum
Belle S. Tuten
 
Household Medicine for a Renaissance Court: Caterina Sforza’s Ricettario Reconsidered
Sheila Barker and Sharon Strocchia
 
Understanding/Controlling the Female Body in Ten Recipes: Print and the Dissemination of Medical Knowledge about Women in the Early Sixteenth Century
Julia Gruman Martins
 
PART 3: Infirmity and Care
 
Ubi non est mulier, ingemiscit egens? Gendered Perceptions of Care from the Thirteenth to Sixteenth Centuries
Eva-Maria Cersovsky
 
Domestic Care in the Sixteenth Century: Expectations, Experiences, and Practices from a Gendered Perspective
Cordula Nolte
 
Bathtubs as a Healing Approach in Fifteenth-Century Ottoman Medicine
Ayman Yasin Atat
 
PART 4: (In)fertility and Reproduction
 
Gender, Old Age, and the Infertile Body in Medieval Medicine
Catherine Rider
 
Gender Segregation and the Possibility of Arabo-Galenic Gynecological Practice in the Medieval Islamic World
Sara Verskin
 
Afterword: Healing Women and Women Healers
Naama Cohen-Hanegbi

CFP – Gender and History – Special Issue: Health, Healing and Caring

Gender & History is an international journal for research and writing on the history of femininity, masculinity and gender relations. This Call for Papers is aimed at scholars studying any country or region, and any temporal period, including the classical, medieval, early modern, modern, and contemporary periods.

This Special Issue will explore the gendered history of healing and caring from the perspective of the sick and suffering, and various types of healers and caregivers. It aims to move beyond institutional histories of biomedicine, canonical medical knowledge, and allopathic approaches to health. We seek to showcase research that reflects upon the gendered dynamics of palliative care and the formation of diverse communities and economies of health and healing. We recognize that historical reckonings of health and bodily knowledge in many locales have been dominated by sources maintained in state, colonial, and missionary archives, and by notions of medicine shaped in white settler institutions. In an effort to destabilize these reckonings and to uncover marginalized forms of knowledge and practice, we encourage research informed by diverse methodologies and an imaginative approach to source material.

In recent years, medical anthropologists have shed light on the complex and unequal co-production of biomedical knowledge and “traditional” forms of medicine while feminist sociologists have illuminated the gendered dynamics of caregiving and the devaluation of its everyday and emotional labor. How might historians engage these cross-disciplinary methods and insights to reconstruct more nuanced and more expansive histories of healing and caring? What happens to our gendered histories of illness and medicine when we de-naturalize biomedical formations and examine palliative care in addition to therapeutic treatment? How has gender shaped which forms of healing and caring are recognized and institutionalized, and how has such privileging changed over time?

We understand that historically a wide array of people have provided healing and caring including family members, shamans, spirit mediums, healers, Elders, herbalists, diviners, faith healers, and wise-women and men as well as midwives, nurses, aids, and doctors. Their practices have ranged from diagnosing illnesses, administering medicines, and performing procedures to offering spiritual and psychological counsel. They have also included forms of body work such as grooming, feeding, bathing, massage and manipulation, and handling the dead.

Papers are invited from established scholars as well as new, emerging, and unaffiliated scholars who consider a variety of historical moments and locations, or transnational and even global processes related to themes such as the following:

●Intersectional approaches that examine how social identities and inequalities rooted in gender,race, ethnicity, sexuality, class, religion, and nationality have long shaped people’s access tohealth resources and care and, in turn, given rise to disparate patterns and experiences of well-being and illness.

●Reconstruction of deep histories of gendered healing and caring, extending back well before thetwentieth century, that reveal how healing and caring practices have been central concerns forboth individuals and societies and how those concerns have often animated and reconfiguredcultural institutions, political ideologies, and economic relations and markets.

●Consideration of the connections and tensions between various modes of healing and palliation,and how those relations have informed the frequently gendered and racialized separation of“professional” and “modern” medicine from modes designated as “traditional,” “informal,”“alternative,” or “home-based.”

●Examination of how people have transmitted healing and caring epistemologies and practicesacross generations and geographic distances, including how women have sought to maintain orassert control over their health and how various archives have worked both to represent andobscure those efforts.

●Engagement with concepts from disability studies, queer theory, and crip theory to betterunderstand the history of illnesses and diseases that have often been both gendered andstigmatized such as depression, hysteria, reproductive maladies, infertility, and sexuallytransmitted infections.

Interested individuals are asked to submit 500-word abstracts, a brief biography (250 words), and a cv by 31 August 2019 at 5pm PDT for consideration. Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editors and successful proponents will participate in a symposium at Vancouver Island University in British Columbia, Canada, on 8 May 2020. Papers must be submitted six weeks prior to the symposium. Papers should be 6000-8000 words in length. After the symposium, papers will go through the journal’s peer review system. As with any article, there is no guarantee of publication. The editors are in the process of applying for funding to defray the cost of the travel to the symposium for new, emerging, and unaffiliated scholars. Please send abstracts, biographies, and CVs by email to genderhistory@viu.ca or by mail to The Editors, Gender & History, Vancouver Island University, 900 Fifth Street, Nanaimo, BC V9R 5S5. The Special Issue will be edited by Drs. Kristin Burnett, Sara Ritchey, and Lynn M. Thomas.

Special Issue Timeline Abstracts to SI editors — 31 August 2019 Papers circulated to symposium participants — 15 March 2020 Symposium at Vancouver Island University (Nanaimo, British Columbia) — 8 May 2020Full submissions to SI editors (papers submitted on ScholarOne) for peer review — 31 August, 2020 Revised submissions (and any image permissions) to SI editors — 31 May 2021 Publication — October 2021

CFC – Dis/ability in the medieval Nordic world – A special issue of Mirator Editors: Anna Katharina Heiniger and Christopher Crocker

The special issue emerges from the interdisciplinary research project Disability before disability (Icel. Fötlun fyrir tíma fötlunar) situated at the Centre for Disability Studies at the University of Iceland, initiated in 2017, and supported by the Icelandic Research fund (Icel. Rannsóknasjóður) Grant of Excellence No 173655-05.

Recent years have seen growing interest in the exploration of disability in premodern societies and cultures. In line with the now commonly accepted (working) premise that disability is a multi-factorial phenomenon, scholars have come to realise that there can be no fixed, atemporal or acultural definition of disability. Thus, in order to consider whether and how premodern societies may have conceptualized disability, scholars must shed presentist preconceptions, cast a wide net, and be prepared to read between the lines. Equipped with an understanding of disability as a tool of sociocultural analysis, scholars today commonly make use of the concepts of ‘embodied difference’ and ‘marked or unusual bodies’ to yield more fruitful results as they do not imply pre-defined notions of disability. Although the body becomes a central platform on whose basis disability is negotiated, scholars are in no way limited to speaking only of the physicality of bodies. Rather the body is understood as a medium which materialises and translates physical, psychic, and intellectual differences in a way that societies can identify them as deviations from what is considered ‘normal’ in specific historical and socio-cultural contexts. Indeed, the phenomenon of disability cannot be studied without the contrast of what a culture or society conceptualizes as ‘ability’ and identifies as ‘normal’. The term ‘dis/ability’ can be used to express this inherent relationship and to remind us that it is not possible to understand one without recognizing the other.

Within this theoretical context, we invite proposals for essays (c. 7000 words) for a special issue of the journal Mirator that seeks to expand upon growing interest of dis/ability in the context of the medieval Nordic world. Contributors to the special issue will explore dis/ability within the context of different social arrangements and cultural conventions in the medieval Nordic world. We will especially welcome contributions that focus on close reading of specific texts (historical, legal, literary, etc.) as well as suggestions for broad, methodological approaches towards the study of dis/ability in the medieval Nordic world. Contributors will be encouraged, where possible, to expand the scope of their research to include related aspects from the fields of cultural studies, social theory, history, art, etc. In the context of the medieval Nordic world, possible topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Approaches to the experience of dis/ability (i.e. sources, methodology)
  • Dis/ability and society
  • Religion and dis/ability
  • Dis/ability and medical knowledge
  • Intersections of dis/ability with age, gender, social status, etc.
  • Dis/ability and the law
  • Narrating experiences and perceptions of dis/ability
  • Dis/ability, assistive technology, and care
  • Terminology or language of dis/ability

Contributions dealing with geographic regions in the medieval Nordic world, including Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and/or Sweden, are welcome. We hope to represent all of these regions in the special issue and are particularly eager to field proposals dealing with Danish and Finnish material.

Please send one-page essay proposals accompanied by brief author bio (c. 100 words) to annakh@hi.is by June 1, 2019. In order to achieve an expeditious production timeline, essay drafts will be due in January 2020. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns you might have in the meantime.