Category Archives: ANZAMEMS

Highlights from the Parergon Archives: Words as Weapons

We asked members of Parergon‘s Early Career Committee to tell us about a Parergon article that stood out for them and why they found it valuable for their research. In this post, Francesca Battista discusses Kathleen Neal’s ‘Words as Weapons in the Correspondence of Edward I with Llywelyn ap Gruffydd’, Parergon 30.1 (2013), pp. 51-71 [DOI: 10.1353/pgn.2013.0051]

The one-day workshop on Letter Writing in the Middle Ages, held at the Bush House, King’s College London in 2019 and organized by Simon Thomas Parsons, Thomas W. Smith and Anaïs Waag, not only offered a great opportunity to be engaged in interesting debates on medieval epistolary culture, but it also allowed me to meet brilliant scholars and hear about their meaningful work. A stimulating exchange of ideas after the conference with one of the attendees, Amanda McVitty, and the paper presented by Kathleen Neal, introduced me to valuable scholarship on dictamen and related areas of study from Australia and New Zealand, which was unknown to me. Neal’s article that I am going to discuss in this post is part of this story. Her research method represents a great source of inspiration for the dictaminal research I am conducting.

The influence of ars dictaminis on the shaping of chancery style in England was long ago recognized by Kantorowicz, Denholm-Young, and more recently pointed out by Camargo, Richardson, and Grévin, among others. However, the investigation of the ways in which from the thirteenth century dictamen started to be used as a royal political communication tool is still not fully explored.

Neal’s article provides a relevant contribution to the field of investigation, offering a compelling reading of the letters exchanged between Edward I of England and Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, Prince of Wales, during the time period between the Anglo-Welsh wars (1276-77, 1282-83). This correspondence is read drawing attention to its dictaminal shape and interconnected political intent. Furthermore, it also illustrates a method based on the study of the epistolary drafting process for interpreting royal letters, not as “relics of a well-developed medieval bureaucracy,” but rather “as episodes of strategic communication” (p. 52).

The article concentrates on a single letter which is offered as an example of how Edward I’s letters functioned as rhetorical political artifacts in connection to the Anglo-Welsh struggle. It is a royal reply of 1280 to one or two of Llywelyn’s letters which were concerned, above all, with the issue of the possession of Arwystli region. The Treaty of Aberconwy of 1277, which marked the capitulation of Llywelyn to Edward I, left open the Welsh dispute over this land. As a result, rights to it were claimed equally by the Prince of Wales and Gruffydd ap Gwenwynwyn, ally of the king. In his letters addressed to the king, Llewelyn complains because the king was not able to settle this dispute in his Parliament. Such criticism resulted in an indirect aggression to the heart of Edward I’s monarchy.

Neal brilliantly shows how Edward’s reply appears to be a rhetorical means of legitimization of the manner of power execution in the hands of the superior party. Accordingly, for example, in the salutatio the address terms of “beloved and faithful”, which were used in line with the Anglo-Norman epistolary practices rather than on the basis of those of the Welsh chancery, stress the Prince of Wales’ subordination to the king and also show who “was willing to conduct their discussion” (p. 61).

Likewise, the hypertrophic narratio would suggest “that a hostile reception was anticipated” and indicates “how important it was in royal and Chancery circles that an English construction of the situation be articulated” (p. 61). It could be also argued that the length of the narratio is an especially significant aspect to be considered as a clear transgression of dictaminal norms. Handbooks of letter writing prescribed that narration had to be brief and concise, and English artes dictandi were not an exception. One of the most relevant merits of this article is its attentive examination of the editorial work involved in the production of this letter. Edward’s letter survives as a draft and all the draft’s changes and deletions represent a conscious use of language which is itself political. Notably, despite the fact that their consideration is necessary for a complete reading of the letter, they had been neglected in previous research. An edition and a translation of the letter, along with the annotation of the deletions and additions in the apparatus, are for the first time provided in the appendix of this article.

In conclusion, as shown by Neal, royal letters extant in the form of draft or not, can be regarded as a fruitful place for the investigation of the monarchy’s dictaminal construction of power. This applies to 13th century Britain, as in the specific case of this paper, but it could be extended to a European level to other royal chanceries. For the richness of its investigation, this article represents a wide range of scholarly interests. It can be especially recommended to historians of medieval Britain and Europe, specialists of dictamen, scholars of political communication and kingship, and researchers of medieval textuality and scribal activity.

Parergon can be accessed via Project MUSE (from Volume 1 (1983)), Australian Public Affairs – Full Text (from 1994), and Humanities Full Text (from 2008). For more information on the current issue and on submitting manuscripts for consideration, please visit https://parergon.org/

Parergon 37.1

Parergon volume 37.1, featuring eight scholarly articles and 50 reviews and short notices, has now been published on all platforms except Project MUSE, where it will appear in July. 

Print copies will be posted to ANZAMEMS members from mid-June. The contents of the volume are posted below:

Download (PDF, Unknown)

CFP Aesthetics in Early Modern Poetry at #ANZA21

We invite scholarly proposals for papers on aesthetics in medieval and early modern poetry (c. 400 to 1800), as part of a panel or panels being established at ANZAMEMS 2021

The panel(s) will examine the influence of aesthetic styles, movements, rhetorical and aesthetic techniques and theories on the development of poetry, or the work of specified poet(s) at any time during the relevant periods in Europe and Britain. Papers should be set within the broader topic of the overall conference, and deal with questions of reception and/or emotion. Papers might consider:

• The role of emotions in medieval or early modern aesthetic theories;
• Models of embodiment in aesthetic theories during the period;
• Theories of affect, ‘affectus’ and/or feelings;
• The impact of theological and biblical sources (for example, by Augustine and Aquinas);
• The impact of philosophy of mind, body, morality and ethics (such as Platonic and Aristotelian);
• Formal theories of poetics and rhetoric, including the role of style in poetic and rhetorical figures and tropes;
• The impact of artistic movements (such as Neoplatonist, Neoclassical, Baroque) and the reciprocal influence of visual arts on poetry (eg ut pictura poesis);
• Public and private models of ‘taste’, audience and reception;
• The role of pleasure, the imagination and sensuous and vivid imagery;
• Techniques for the aestheticization of the sacred (such as the poetics of enigma);
• Theories of the sublime and the beautiful;
• Participatory versus objectivist aesthetics;
• Materialist, or transcendental and idealist models;
• Poststructural or psychoanalytic approaches; or
• The role and value of historicist and/or modern theory.

We invite submissions for 20 minute presentations, followed by 5 minutes of Q&A. If you are interested in presenting your work, please send the title, a 200 word abstract and a 50 word biography, at the first instance to Dr Jane Vaughan at jane.vaughan@uwa.edu.au

Deadline for Panel Submissions: 30 June 2020

The panel(s) will be held as part of the biennial conference of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, at the School of Humanities, The University of Western Australia, Perth, 8 to 12 February, 2021.

If you have any questions, please contact Dr Jane Vaughan at jane.vaughan@uwa.edu.au

ANZAMEMS AGM

The Annual General Meeting of ANZAMEMS Inc. will be held on Tuesday 28 April 2020 at 11:00am-1:00pm (AWST).

The meeting is hosted by The University of Western Australia and will be held via the video conferencing software Zoom.

Local times (for your convenience):
WA: 11:00am-1:00pm (AWST)
SA: 12:30pm-2:30pm (ACST)
VIC/NSW/TAS/ACT/QLD: 1:00pm-3:00pm (AEST)
New Zealand: 3:00pm-5:00pm (NZST)

Details of the Zoom connection will be circulated to members closer to the AGM date.

At the upcoming ANZAMEMS AGM a number of committee positions need to be elected. This email is also a call for nominations for the following positions:

Communications Officer
Parergon Reviews Editor
Postgraduate Officer (Australia)
Postgraduate Officer (New Zealand)

In addition, the following positions are declared open and can also be contested. The incumbents have all declared their willingness to remain in the positions, but if you wish to contest the position, then you may:

Secretary (Current incumbent: Karen Jillings)
Vice-President (Australia) (Current incumbent: Clare Monagle)
Treasurer (Current incumbent: Peter Sherlock)
Committee Member (Current incumbent: Helen Young)

If you wish to nominate for any of these positions on the ANZAMEMS committee, please send the Executive Administrator Marina Gerzic (info@anzamems.org) an email with your name, affiliation, and short biographical statement (please note: you must be a 2020 financial member to nominate), as well as the names of your nomination proposer and a seconder (please note: both must be 2020 financial members) by Wednesday 18 March 2020 at the latest.

Once the Executive Administrator has received nominations, a proxy form for those unable to attend the AGM to vote on these positions will be created and circulated.

Please note: names of nominees will only be printed on the proxy forms if they are submitted by the 18 March deadline.

Please contact the Executive Administrator for any further information about any of these committee positions.

ANZAMEMS 2021 Bursaries and Prizes

Applications for the following ANZAMEMS 2021 conference bursaries and prizes are now open:

ANZAMEMS Conference Travel Bursaries

To enable current or recent Postgraduates and Early Career Researchers who are currently not in full-time employment to attend the ANZAMEMS Biennial Conference and deliver a paper at a session, travel bursaries will be offered.

Bursaries will be awarded on a competitive basis and are scaled on the basis of distance from the venue (up to $300 for recipients travelling from regional WA; $500 from other Australian states and territories; and $1000 for those travelling internationally). Delegates from Perth are ineligible to apply.

It is not expected that Conference Convenors will be able to offer a bursary to every eligible applicant. In the event of there being more eligible applicants than can be supported, the ANZAMEMS Conference Committee will rank applicants according to distance travelled, financial need, current employment status, and access to other sources of funding.

Kim Walker Postgraduate Travel Bursary

One of the conference bursary applicants will be selected for the Kim Walker Travel Bursary, which is awarded in honour of Kim Walker, who taught in the English program at Victoria University of Wellington. The prize is currently set at $AUD 500.

Postgraduate students from New Zealand who have applied for a Travel Bursary before the relevant deadline will automatically be considered for the Kim Walker Postgraduate Travel Bursary. A separate application is not necessary.

George Yule Essay Prize

The George Yule Prize is awarded to the best essay written by a postgraduate. It is awarded biennially, at each ANZAMEMS Conference. The winner will receive a travel bursary for assistance in attending the conference, $AUD 500 in prize money, and a year’s free subscription to Parergon.

For more information and application forms please see https://www.anzamems2021.com/busaries-prizes

The deadline for all bursary and prize applications is 31 July 2020.

CFP ‘Reception, Emotion and the Royal Body’ panel at #ANZA21

This panel will convene at the Thirteenth Biennial Conference of the Australia and
New Zealand Association of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (#anza21), to be
held at The University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia, from 8-12 February
2021. https://www.anzamems2021.com/

The idea of the ‘king’s two bodies’, a duality predicated on the idea that a
monarch possessed two bodies, a body natural and a body politic–the former
mortal, the latter an embodiment of both the nation and the authority of
sovereignty–has long been of interest to scholars of medieval and early modern
monarchies.

The body of a monarch remains a contest site, with the life, health, fertility, and
sexuality of kings or queens continuing to be an important part of politics. Royal
scandal graces the covers of newspapers and magazines and trends on social
media, and royal weddings, births, and deaths continue to capture the public’s
imagination and interest.

We seek papers that examine the significance of the royal body, in particular, the
reception of the royal body across time periods, cultures, and media and how
royal bodies both convey and elicit emotions:

Topics may include, but are not limited to:
• Historiography
• Iconography and representation
• Drama and literature
• Political theory
• Divine bodies
• Rituals and ceremony
• Effigies and monuments
• Age, health and pregnancy
• Fertility, chastity, virility
• Royal births and deaths
• Christenings, coronations, weddings and funerals
• Regicide
• Royal touch
• Deformity and disability
• Royal Dress
• Sex and Scandal
• Gender
• Sexuality
• Race
• Medievalism and early-modernism
• Performance
• Audiences
• Popular culture
• Film and television
• Comics and graphic novels
• Fandom
• Celebrity

Proposals for 20-minute conference papers should consist of:
1. A title
2. An abstract (max. 200 words)
3. A short biography (max. 50 words)

Submissions should be emailed (as a Word document attachment) to:
mgerzic@gmail.com by 30 June 2020.

ANZAMEMS Seminar: Call for Expressions of Interest

The committee of ANZAMEMS 2021 is delighted to Call for Expressions of Interest in the
ANZAMEMS Seminar ‘Vectors of Emotion’, which will precede the conference on
Monday 8 February 2021 from 11am–4pm (lunch and afternoon tea will be included).

Seminar Leader: Assoc. Prof Kathryn Prince (The University of Western Australia).

About the Seminar

Drama relies on the palpable circulation of emotions onstage and in the audience, which is
one reason for its reliable function as a vector of emotion between the moment of its creation
and of its performance. Working with medieval and early modern scripts, participants in this
Seminar will apply various History of Emotions approaches to the performance of selected
scenes in order to develop an understanding of the emotional practices within plays of
various genres, styles, and periods from the medieval to the early modern.

No performance skills are required or expected, and the workshop is designed to engage
anyone with an interest not only in theatre but also in cultural and intellectual history,
scholarly editing, music, art, and literature. Participants will gain an understanding of the
relationship between theories of emotions and their practice, both in performance and more
broadly.

Because this Seminar will involve various kinds of active participation, applicants should
advise the organiser of any accessibility requirements, which will be quietly and cheerfully
accommodated.

How to Apply

Expressions of Interest should consist of:

  1.  Your name, institutional affiliation, and year of HDR candidacy (MA, MRes, PhD) or
    ECR status (with priority to those who have not yet found permanent employment);
  2. Your field/s of research;
  3. A 250-word statement explaining your interest in participating in the Seminar and
    how you believe participation will assist your research and/or career development;
  4. Any accessibility requirements.

Please email Expressions of Interest for the ANZAMEMS Seminar (as a Word document
attachment) to: anzamems2021@gmail.com (with the email title ‘Vectors of Emotions
Seminar Application’) by 31 July 2020.

CFP ANZAMEMS 2021

The Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Early Modern Studies
conference committee seeks proposals for its 2021 conference on the theme ‘Reception and
Emotion’, to be held in Perth, Australia at The University of Western Australia from 8–12
February.

The committee welcomes all approaches to topics related to ‘reception and emotion’ broadly
conceived (and conceived either together or separately: i.e., on reception and emotion, or on
either reception or emotion), including but not limited to: trans-cultural, trans-temporal,
trans-disciplinary, translation, global studies, creative misreadings, theatrical and literary
revivals, forgeries, homages, cultural counter-strikes, regimes of periodisation, etc. We
welcome proposals considering the usefulness or otherwise of reception history as a
methodology: is ‘transformation’ more helpful than ‘reception’, for example, for appreciating
the active role of the audience of a text, play, or idea?

Work on emotions can be similarly broad, covering, e.g., what’s evidenced from the
‘receivers’ and from the ‘received’ (thinking of work, for example, on how Indigenous
people have received missionaries and their doctrines; how medievalists have reacted and
acted in relation to the worrying associations of their discipline; even how humanities
scholars feel about their reception in contemporary political circles; Jan Plamper’s suggestion
that historians should keep ‘field diaries’ about their personal response to work in the
archives; are there ‘objective’ studies?). What’s been the value and downside of the
‘emotional turn’ in humanities studies? How do we as scholars of the past deal with presentist
notions of ‘relevance’, and need we consider past scholarship as ‘outdated? How can we
marry approaches from humanities and life sciences in ‘emotions history’?

Call for Papers

The conference committee invites proposals for 20-minute papers, 90-minute themed panels
(of no more than 4 speakers) or workshops. Paper topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • The reception of ideas about emotion in medieval/early modern texts;
  • Reception and transformation of ideologies across time and space;
  • The emotions of an audience in the reception of a play or sermon;
  • The emotional impact of a text on a reader;
  • Rituals and practices of receiving guests and dignitaries (and their emotional
    effects?);
  • The reception of the past: medievalism and early-modernism;
  • The reception of bodies / emotions and bodies / embodiment;
  • Reception / emotion and sexuality;
  • Reception / emotion and race;
  • Reception / emotion and gender;
  • Reception / emotion and music / art

Proposals for 20-minute conference papers should consist of:

  1. A title;
  2. An abstract (max. 200 words);
  3. A short biography (max. 50 words).

The conference committee welcomes themed panel or workshop session proposals for the
conference. Proposals should consist of:

  1. Panel/Workshop Title;
  2. Proposed Chair (if available);
  3. Details of each presenter and paper as described above.

NB: Workshops will be allotted 90 minutes, 30 of which should be reserved for general
discussion. We suggest a maximum of 6 speakers.

Submissions should be emailed (as a Word document attachment) to:
anzamems2021@gmail.com. Deadline for submissions: 31 July 2020.

NB: Should you require early acceptance of your proposal please highlight this in your email
and the committee will do our best to accommodate your request.

For more information please visit the conference website.

Reminder: Western Civilisation in the Twenty-First Century Registration

Registration for the ANZAMEMS symposium ‘Western Civilisation in the Twenty-First Century’, held 20-21 February 2020 at the University of Adelaide, is free and open until 14 February. Registration can be completed via Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/western-civilisation-in-the-twenty-first-century-tickets-79997658149

The full schedule can be viewed here: https://westernciv2020.wordpress.com/schedule/

Parergon 36.2 Preview: Myth, Reality and Revelation: The Performance of Divine Power on Dartmoor

We asked contributors to the current issue of Parergon to give us some additional insights into their research and the inspirations for their articles. In this post, David C. Harvey, Associate Professor in Critical Heritage Studies at Aarhus University, Denmark, discusses the article he co-wrote with Joanne Parker, Associate Professor of Victorian Literature and Culture at the University of Exeter, UK: ‘Myth, Reality and Revelation: The Performance of Divine Power on Dartmoor’. DOI: 10.1353/pgn.2019.0056

Just a few weeks after I first came to Exeter University as an undergraduate student in October 1988, I remember being taken by Vic Ambler, the Warden of the St Lukes Hall of Residence, for an evening walk to Dartmoor. We got dropped off near Challacombe, and walked via Grimspound, the Headland Warren and Bennett’s Cross to the Warren House Inn. Just before we reached the pub, we walked past the Devil’s Playing Cards; four mysteriously shaped fields laid out on the hillside, in the shape of the four suits of a deck of playing cards. I remember Vic telling a story about how these got their name: that during a Great Storm, the Devil crashed through the roof of the Church at nearby Widecombe-in-the-Moor and carried off a man called Jan Reynolds who was playing cards at the back of the Church. As he flew across the moor, Jan dropped the four aces that he had up his sleeve and they fell to earth as four enclosures. I squinted at the hillside – OK; I could pick out the Diamond quite clearly… perhaps the Heart; but one needed to have a bit more imagination to make out the Club and the Spade. It was a good story – though I would have thought that the Devil would have been happy with someone playing cards at the back of a Church Service?

The walk, across Hameldown, between Widecombe and Warren House is one of my favourites, and the legend about the Devil is a nice story to impress visitors. It might even place me as a ‘local’, or at least as someone who ‘knows’ the Dartmoor landscape. Over the following years, I became more and more familiar with Dartmoor and its legends; lots about the Devil, many about ‘hauntings’, and a good few about environmental hazards – deep bogs or terrible storms. Indeed, there’s a story about a ‘Great Storm’ of 1638, written up on a series of tablets in the Nave of Widecombe Church, in which several people were killed – victims of God’s Judgement. I vaguely realised that the Devilish Legend about the Playing Cards was referring to the same storm event as the tragedy of 1638 in Widecombe, but never really followed up on how and why the two stories were connected.

In the Autumn of 2013, I was to run a 3rd year day field trip to Dartmoor to talk about landscape history and archaeology. The Headland Warren, Bennett’s Cross and the Devil’s Playing Cards was an obvious destination to take a group of third years in the Autumn Term of 2013, and all my Landscape Knowledge or Lore comes into its own when running such a student field trip. The legend of the Devil will be memorable for the students – just as it was for myself in 1988 – and if that helps to instil the ‘factual’ elements of landscape history, then all the better. On Friday 18th October 2013, I led a group of 35 students up to Dartmoor, as part of the Undergraduate Level 3 ‘Geographies of Heritage and Memory’ module within the Geography Department at Exeter.

I wrote a blog about this field trip here – and was struck by the juxtaposition of the two stories about the ‘Great Storm’. Of course, the students also asked some tricky questions – surely, they ask me, the Devil should have been happy that people were playing cards in Church(!); and how come the figure of ‘God’ turned directly into the figure of the Devil. These loose ends needed tidying up….

I re-visited the Church at Widecombe and took some photos of the tablets on the wall of the Nave. This story was very clear – that it was God that brought on the Great Storm and God’s Judgement that carried off several parishioners.

I also began talking to my colleague in the English Department, Joanne Parker, who had previously written about Dartmoor stories and legends. We had been working together within the ‘Past-Place’ research team, at Exeter, and so the idea of producing a ‘life history’ of storytelling associated with an event such as the Great Storm took hold.

Together, we started to patch together the accounts of the Great Storm, of October 1638, from the first pamphlet publications only a couple of weeks after, through renditions in poetic and prose form during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, and to their re-deployment in tourist legend in the 19th and 20th centuries. The first accounts of the event appeared in London in November 1638, and in this version, the storm is very much associated with God’s Judgement – though we also found the vestiges of some quasi-scientific reflection and interest. The Devil gets a mention in the 18th century, but only starts to dominate the accounts in the 19th century – which is the point at which the stone enclosures (the Devil’s Playing Cards) near the Warren House Inn enter the scene.

Just as my imagination was captivated in 1988 – and just as I have recounted it to many visitors in the last 30 years – the legend of the Devil has good currency through which to support ‘insider’ credentials. In some ways, its slightly comical and clearly mythical nature provides a gloss of specifically ‘local’ landscape knowledge. It is a story of ‘place making practice’, both over the last 380 years over which the legends have been circulated, and also the 30 years over which I have been telling the stories myself – as a ‘professional landscape historian’. And over the last 6 years, the blog on a WordPress site has now become a published journal article!

All images belong to the author.

Parergon can be accessed via Project MUSE (from Volume 1 (1983)), Australian Public Affairs – Full Text (from 1994), and Humanities Full Text (from 2008). For more information on the current issue and on submitting manuscripts for consideration, please visit https://parergon.org/