New book – Disease and Disability in Medieval and Early Modern Art and Literature, eds. Rinaldo F. Canalis and Massimo Ciavolella – Brepols, April 2021.

 
 
Humanity has always shown a keen interest in the pathological, ranging from a morbid fascination with ‘monsters’ and deformities to a genuine compassion for the ill and suffering. Medieval and early modern people were no exception, expressing their emotional response to disease in both literary works and, to a somewhat lesser extent, in the plastic arts. Consequently, it becomes necessary to ask what motivated writers and artists to choose an illness or a disability and its physical and social consequences as subjects of aesthetic or intellectual expression. Were these works the result of an intrusion in their intent to faithfully reproduce nature, or do they reflect an intentional contrast against the pre-modern portrayal of spiritual ideals and, later, through the influence of the classics, the rediscovered importance and beauty of the human body?
The essays contained in this volume address these questions, albeit not always directly but, rather, through an analysis of the societal reactions to the threats and challenges that essentially unopposed disease and physical impairment presented. They cover a wide range of responses, variable, of course, according to the period under scrutiny, its technological moment, and the usually fruitless attempts at treatment.
 

CONTENTS:

  • Introduction and Epidemiological Perspective — Rinaldo F. Canalis and Massimo Ciavolella
 

Part I. Medieval and Transitional Periods

 
  • The Art of Medicine in Byzantium: Disease and Disability in Byzantine Manuscripts — Alain Touwaide
  • Miracle and the Monstrous: Disability and Deviant Bodies in the Late Middle Ages — Jenni Kuuliala
  • Leprosy, Melancholy, Folly and their Representations in French Medieval Literature — Gaia Gubini
  • Malady in Literary Texts from the Medieval and Early Modern Periods. Some Hypotheses on a Paradoxical Constellation — Joachim Küpper
  • Fevers, Botches and Carbuncles: Describing the Plague in Late Medieval and Early Modern Medical Treatises — Lori Jones
 

Part II. The Early Modern Period

 
  • The Role of Architecture and the Decorative Arts in Renaissance Medicine — Francis Wells
  • Art in Disease and Disease in Art: Reflections on Two Early Modern Paradigmatic Examples — Manuela Gallerani
  • The Mal Franzoso: Between Art, History and Literature: Paracelso and Della Porta — Alfonso Paolella
  • The Ailing Artist — Roberto Fedi
  • Nicolas Poussin`s The Plague at Ashdod and the French Disease — Efrain Kristal
  • ‘Yet have I in me something dangerous’: On the Interplay of Medicine and Maleficence in Shakespeare’s Hamlet — Sara Frances Burdorff
  • Textures of Lesions – Textures of Prints — Domenico Bertoloni Meli 

 

More info on the editor website

New book – Leprosy and identity in the Middle Ages: From England to the Mediterranean, eds. Elma Brenner and François-Olivier Touati – Manchester University Press, April 2021.

 
For the first time, this volume explores the identities of leprosy sufferers and other people affected by the disease in medieval Europe. The chapters, including contributions by leading voices such as Luke Demaitre, Carole Rawcliffe and Charlotte Roberts, challenge the view that people with leprosy were uniformly excluded and stigmatised. Instead, they reveal the complexity of responses to this disease and the fine line between segregation and integration. Ranging across disciplines, from history to bioarchaeology, Leprosy and identity in the Middle Ages encompass post-medieval perspectives as well as the attitudes and responses of contemporaries. Subjects include hospital care, diet, sanctity, miraculous healing, diagnosis, iconography and public health regulation. This richly illustrated collection presents previously unpublished archival and material sources from England to the Mediterranean.
 

CONTENTS:

 
Introduction – Elma Brenner and François-Olivier Touati
 
Part I: Approaching leprosy and identity
 
  • Reflections on the bioarchaeology of leprosy and identity, past and present – Charlotte Roberts
  • Lepers and leprosy: connections between East and West in the Middle Ages – François-Olivier Touati
  • The disease and the sacred: the leper as a scapegoat in England and Normandy (eleventh-twelfth centuries) – Damien Jeanne
 
Part II: Within the leprosy hospital: between segregation and integration
 
  • ‘A mighty force in the ranks of Christ’s army’: intercession and integration in the medieval English leper hospital – Carole Rawcliffe
  • Saint Mary Magdalen, Winchester: the archaeology and history of an English leprosarium and almshouse – Simon Roffey
  • Diet as a marker of identity in the leprosy hospitals of medieval northern France – Elma Brenner
 
Part III: Beyond the leprosy hospital: the language of poverty and charity
 
  • Good people, poor sick: the social identities of lepers in the late medieval Rhineland – Lucy Barnhouse
  • The clapper as ‘vox miselli’: new perspectives on iconography – Luke Demaitre
 
Part IV: Religious and social identities
 
  • Kissing lepers: Saint Francis and the treatment of lepers in the central Middle Ages – Courtney A. Krolikoski
  • From pilgrim to knight, from monk to bishop: the distorted identities of leprosy within the Order of Saint Lazarus – Rafaël Hyacinthe
  • Connotation and denotation: the construction of the leper in Narbonne and Siena before the plague – Anna M. Peterson
 
Part V: Post-medieval perspectives
 
  • ‘Our loathsome ancestors’: reinventing medieval leprosy for the modern world, 1850-1950 – Kathleen Vongsathorn and Magnus Vollset.
 
 

CFP – The Fifteenth Oxford Medieval Graduate Conference – Deviance: Aspects & Approaches – April 5.-6. 2019, Kellogg College, Oxford

We are pleased to open the Call for Papers for the Fifteenth Oxford Medieval Graduate Conference, sponsored by the Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature. The conference is aimed at early career scholars and graduate students working in Medieval Studies. Contributions are welcomed from diverse fields of research such as History of Art and Architecture, History of Science, History, Theology, Philosophy, Music, Archaeology: Anthropology, Literature: and History of Ideas.

Papers should be a maximum of 20 minutes.
Please email 250-word abstracts to oxgradconf@gmail.com by 20. January 2019. Suggested topics might include, but are not limited to:


Divergent Behaviours: Norm.

  • Divergent behaviours

— Social transgressions

— Political, theological, moral deviance

— Diverging manuscript practices

— Diverging monastic practices

  • Normativity and non-normativity

— Recounting & imagining deviance

— Shifting norms & practices

— Power (im)balances & struggles

— Enforcing norms

— Responses to deviance

  • Bodies & minds

— Literary tropes (monstrosity, madness, leprosy, etc.)

— Linguistic shifts

— Ability & disability

The registration fee (including a wine reception) is expected to be £10 (tbc). There will be a conference dinner: it is hoped that this will cost in the region of £25. All updates and further information, including details of travel bursaries, can be obtained from the conference website:
aevum.space/deviance gBesanpon, BM, NIS 0677, fol. 77

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@thMedGradConf
MEDIUM IEVUM – SOCIETY FOR THE STUDY OF MEDIEVAL LANGUAGES AND LITERATURE

New book – New Approaches to Disease, Disability and Medicine in Medieval Europe, eds. Erin Connelly and Stefanie Künzel (Archeopress, October 2018)

The majority of papers in this volume were originally presented at the eighth annual ‘Disease, Disability, and Medicine in Medieval Europe’ conference. The conference focused on infections, chronic illness, and the impact of infectious diseases on medieval society, including infection as a disability in the case of visible conditions, such as infected wounds, leprosy, syphilis, and tuberculosis. Using an interdisciplinary approach, this conference emphasised the importance of collaborative projects, novel avenues of research for treating infectious disease, and the value of considering medieval questions from the perspective of multiple disciplines. This volume aims to carry forward this interdisciplinary synergy by bringing together contributors from a variety of disciplines and from a diverse range of international institutions. Of note is the academic stage of the contributors in this volume. All the contributors were PhD candidates at the time of the conference, and the majority have completed or are in the final stages of completing their programmes at the time of this publication. The originality and calibre of research presented by these early career researchers demonstrates the promising future of the field, as well as the continued relevance of medieval studies for a wide range of disciplines and topics.

CONTENTS:

Foreword — Christina Lee

Introduction — Erin Connelly and Stefanie Künzel

Þu miht wiþ þam laþan ðe geond lond færð: Conceptualisations of Disease in Anglo-Saxon Charms — Stefanie Künzel

A Still Sound Mind: Personal Agency of Impaired People in Anglo-Saxon Care and Cure Narratives — Marit Ronen

Mobility Limitations and Assistive Aids in the Merovingian Burial Record — Cathrin Hähn

Tearing the Face in Grief and Rape: Cheek Rending in Medieval Iberia, c. 1000–1300 — Rachel Welsh

Clerical Leprosy and the Ecclesiastical Office: Dis/Ability and Canon Law — Ninon Dubourg

Inside the Leprosarium: Illness in the Daily Life of 14th Century Barcelona — Clara Jáuregui

Languages of Experience: Translating Medicine in MS Laud Misc — Lucy Barnhouse

Heillög Bein, Brotin Bein: Manifestations of Disease in Medieval Iceland — Cecilia Collins

A Case Study of Plantago in the Treatment of Infected Wounds in the Middle English Translation of Bernard of Gordon’s Lilium medicinae — Erin Connelly

Miserum spectaculum, horrendus fetor, aspectus horrendus: ‘Syphilis’ in Strasbourg at the Turn of the 16th Century — Christoph Wieselhuber

More infos on the editor website !