Spring 2012

Feb 24 & 25

Eighth Annual ASSC Graduate Student Conference

UC Berkeley

Conference Website: http://graduatemedievalists.org/assc.html

For full schedule see Conference Poster

All talks to be held in 300 Wheeler Hall

Friday, 24 February

5:00 Keynote – “We Philologists” Jan Ziolkowski
Arthur Kingsley Porter Professor of Medieval Latin, Department of Classics, Harvard University
Director of the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection

Reception to follow in 330 Wheeler Hall

Saturday, 25 February

9:30 Light breakfast & registration

10:15 Opening Remarks

10:30 Session I: Words, Words, Words: Lexical Approaches to Old English

Dave Wilton, University of Toronto
“You Keep Using That Word. I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means: Fæhð in Beowulf”

David Pedersen, Fordham University
“Wyrd in the Old English Poem Solomon and Saturn II”

Leonard Neidorf, Harvard University
“Beow in Beowulf: New Evidence for an Old Emendation”

Respondent: Jacob Hobson, UC Berkeley

12:00 Lunch – 330 Wheeler Hall

1:30 Session II: Where Did the Middle Ages Go? The Modern Reception of Anglo-Saxon England

Peter Buchanan, University of Toronto
“Caedmon and the Gift of Song in Black Mountain Poetics”

Joseph Livingstone, New York University
“‘Like solid rocks’: Language, Nature and the Nature of Language”

Annie Abrams, New York University
“‘Mutilated Remains’: Longfellow’s Historicized Anglo-Saxons

Respondent: Marcos Garcia, UC Berkeley

3:00 Coffee break – 330 Wheeler Hall

3:30 Session III: The Form of the Content: Formal Approaches to Old English Literature

Kathryn Jagger, University College London
“Words for Learning in Alfred’s Preface to the Pastoral Care: Philology and the History of Intellectualism in West Saxon Literature”

Leslie Carpenter, Fordham University
“A New English Verse Form: Poems of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle”

Emile Young, New York University
“Runes, Wisdom, and Textual Transmission”

Respondent: Jennifer Lorden, UC Berkeley

5:00 Banquet – 330 Wheeler Hall – please RSVP by 16 February if planning to attend

March 2

Catherine Sanok (University of Michigan)

Workshop: “Rethinking Community in the Middle Ages”
at Columbia University with Patricia Dailey (Columbia)
conference room, 602 Philosophy Hall, 10 am to 1pm, lunch following

This workshop pairs medieval texts (the South English Legendary and Ælfric’s Colloquy in the faculty-led discussion) with and against theoretical work on community (Jean-Luc Nancy, Maurice Blanchot, Saskia Sassen, Arjun Appadurai). To what extent does critical theory help us question and model how we think about constellations of and identifications with community in the Middle Ages? What are the limits of theoretical models — as well as of those of medieval texts? The workshop will involve presentations and discussions led by faculty, followed by student-led presentations and discussion. Students are welcome to present on texts of their choosing. 

Presenters: Brigit McGuire (CU), Anna Kelner (CC), Erik Wade (Rutgers), Mary Kate Hurley (CU).

Co-sponsored by the Medieval Guild

March 23

Seth Lerer (UC San Diego)

“Authenticity and Aesthetics: George Hickes and the Idea of Anglo-Saxon Poetry”

at New York University
13-19 University Place, Room 222
2:00 pm, Reception to follow 

Co-sponsored by The Medieval and Renaissance Center, NYU, Distinguished Lecture Series, together with the Department of English, NYU, and in collaboration with the Medieval Forum

April 13

Jay Gates (John Jay College)

“Cleaving to God: Sovereignty and the Legal Individual in Cnut’s Laws”

at Columbia University
10am-12pm 408A Philosophy, Lunch following

The dialogue surrounding “political theology” examines the intersections of the common foundations of politics and religion and the mobilization of groups. Carl Schmitt focused on the political use of myth to legitimate the sovereign. Pushing against such legitimation, Walter Benjamin examined how rulers exploit a narrative of the past to justify their rule in the present. And it was out of this dialogue that Ernst Kantorowicz developed his The King’s Two Bodies: A Study in Mediaeval Political Theology. However, what has been largely absent from all such discussions is the role of the individual. Following the change in the laws drafted by Wulfstan for Æthelred and Cnut regarding mutilation, I show that Cnut’s negotiation for legitimacy required a practical understanding of the active subject that can interact with the law. It established mutual personal obligations between sovereign and subject intended to hold the society together, bind all within a Christian political theology, and through a series of mechanisms, maintain every subject as unexceptional, within society and law. 

April 27


“How Best to Study Old English Language and Literature (and Why)”

at New York University
13-19 University Place
Workshop from 12:45-2:45 pm in Room 222
Reception to follow in Room 229

Panelists: Fred C. Robinson (Yale University; A Guide to Old English), Peter S. Baker (University of Virginia, Introduction to Old English), Robert Hasenfratz (University of Connecticut, Reading Old English), Michael Matto (Adelphi University, The Word Exchange) 

Discussants: Martin L. Chase (Fordham, faculty), Heide Estes (Monmouth, faculty), Stacy Klein (Rutgers, faculty), Mo Pareles (NYU, Ph.D. candidate), Christine Venderbosch (Yale, Ph.D. candidate), Audrey Walton (Columbia, Ph.D. candidate), Erica Weaver (Columbia, undergraduate), Eric Weiskott (Yale, Ph.D. candidate), E. Gordon Whatley (Queens College and CUNY Graduate Center, Faculty), Evan Wilson (NYU, undergraduate)