CFP: 2019 International Congress on Medieval Studies

By Sean M. Winslow

 |  Conferences  |  2 min read

Building upon our great success at this year’s International Congress on Medieval Studies (ICMS), and with the support of a number of organizations, we are happy to announce three sessions for next year’s congress (May 9-12, Kalamazoo, MI):

  • Ethiopian Studies I: Magic, Medicine, and Religion

    • Co-sponsors: Centre for Medieval Studies, Univ. of Toronto; Societas Magica
    • Organizer: Augustine Dickinson (Univ. of Toronto)
    • Brief description: “The relationship between magic and religious faith, clearly highlighted in the divergent description of the same items as “magic scrolls” or “scrolls of spiritual healing,” leads us to interrogate the ways that supernatural phenomena, whether divine or demonic, adhere to similar patterns in the minds of the faithful. Accordingly, this session invites explorations of any aspect of Ethiopian or Horn of Africa magical or magico-medicinal practice, including the lines between religiously sanctioned healing processes and magic, syncretic traditions in Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa, and cross-cultural study of traditions which are shared with Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa.”
  • Ethiopian Studies II: Saints, Struggles, and Sermons

    • Co-sponsors: Centre for Medieval Studies, Univ. of Toronto; International Medieval Sermon Studies Society
    • Organizer: Felege-Selam Yirga (Ohio State Univ.)
    • Brief description: “The flowering of hagiographic writing in the 14th century was vital to the formation of Ethiopian political/religious identity and its relationship with the wider Christian oikumene. While there are several genres (such as gädl and dərsan) that may be said to be particular to the Ethiopian context, the same performative and epistemological expectations that premodern readers of Western hagiographies might have had are equally applicable to the medieval Ethiopian context. This session invites papers examining Ethiopian religious stories and texts, their historicity/canonicity, and the debates about history, land tenure, and politics that came to shape their narratives.”
  • Ethiopian Manuscripts and Manuscript Studies in Honor of Getachew Haile (A Roundtable)

    • Co-sponsors: Centre for Medieval Studies, Univ. of Toronto; Hill Museum & Manuscript Library
    • Organizers: Sean Winslow (KFU Graz), Ted Erho (HMML)
    • Brief description: “Although most surviving Ethiopian manuscripts do not strictly meet traditional dating cut-offs for the medieval period, the riches of this tradition have already been of great interest to scholars of the Bible (Enoch, Jubilees), studies of transnational literatures (the Ethiopic version of the Alexander romance), and historians of craft traditions (since the scribal tradition survives to the present day). This session will bring together cataloguers, historians of scribal practice, biblical historians, and art historians, to talk about the current state of the field of Ethiopian Manuscript Studies, and discuss its place in the larger field of manuscript studies.”

Abstracts (~250 words) should be sent to the appropriate organizer by September 15. The guidelines for submitting an abstract can be found on the Congress website. The full call for papers for the Congress is available here.

We hope to see you there!

Sean M. Winslow is a post-doc in Information Modelling at the Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz. He is a manuscript historian, whose doctoral dissertation (U. of Toronto) was on the craft practices of Ethiopian scribes.