Early Medieval Writing Workshop

March 6, 2024

Location: Columbia University

1:30-3:30 pm, 612 Philosophy Hall, lunch provided

This in-person workshop is for students in the dissertation stage, or advanced undergraduate stage, who would like to get feedback on either a draft of a chapter, an outline, an article, or a section of a thesis with other students and faculty. It is open to students working in the early medieval period (pre 1100, roughly) and is intended to provide students at various stages of their writing with feedback.
Please click here and fill out the information if you would like to participate. In order to make this a productive session, the  workshop be limited to a small group. Should we receive an overwhelming amount of enthusiasm, we will consider expanding it and/or including an online version for out-of-state students.

Carceral Angels: An Abolitionist History of the Sheriff

Seeta Chaganti (UC Davis)

February 5, 2024

The NYU Consortium Medievalists and Medieval and Renaissance Center are excited to host Dr. Seeta Chaganti’s talk titled “Carceral Angels: An Abolitionist History of the Sheriff.” The event will take place on February 5th at 6:00pm EST in the event space at NYU’s English Department (244 Greene St.) and over Zoom.
In-person attendees without NYU IDs are required to register here. Masks are encouraged. Please reach out to Emily (erg395@nyu.edu) with any questions!
The Zoom invitation is below:
Time: Feb 5, 2024 06:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 941 9190 0259

Analogues and Kinship: A Talking Circle


March 10, 2023

10:30am-3:30pm EST

To register to attend in person, click here.

For those who would like to attend virtually, please complete ZOOM LINK registration here.

Faculty House, Columbia University

With Suzanne Conklin Akbari (Princeton University), Tarren Andrews (Yale University, Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes), Gage Diabo (Concordia University, Kanien’kehá:ka), Emma Hitchcock (Columbia University), Audra Simpson (Columbia University, Kahnawà:ke Mohawk) and Stephen Yeager (Concordia University)

Sponsored by CEMS, Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement, Medieval & Renaissance Studies, Department of English and Comparative Literature, University Seminar on Medieval Studies, Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity      

Analogues are a key category of evidence in medieval literary studies. When parallels between phrases, imagery, or narrative elements in stories are specific enough that they do not seem to be merely conventional, they empower us to make claims about the shared histories of texts and traditions, and so also about connections in and between the cultural milieux that produced them. Analogic claims narrativize not only the historical relationships between texts in the past but also political relationships between nations in the present. The people who share stories are generally considered to be kin, and the study of analogues aims precisely to determine which people share stories. The studies of analogues so common to medieval studies are always in this sense studies of kinship, between not only medieval peoples but also their modern descendants.

The first half of the day the primary circle members—Tarren Andrews (Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes), Gage Diabo (Kanien’kehá:ka), Emma Hitchcock, and Stephen Yeager—will share thoughts and engage in a conversation about the above prompt. After a lunch break, the workshop will reconvene, and the circle will expand to include all participants in the ongoing conversation. We recommend participants review the following bibliography and welcome further additions to our discussion.

We are asking for participants who attend this Talking Circle and workshop to come prepared to think alongside one another about this complex question, to generously and sincerely discuss the stakes of the analogic methods that so regularly, and perhaps even subconsciously, shape our research practices. The following materials in pdf format will be sent to those who register:

  • Bradway, Tyler and Elizabeth Freeman. “Introduction: Kincoherence/Kin-aesthetics/Kinematics.” Queer Kinship: Race, Sex, Belonging, Form. (2022)
  • Rifkin, Mark. “Introduction.” When Did Indians Become Straight?: Kinship, The History of Sexuality, and Native Sovereignty. (2011)
  • Simpson, Audra. “Indigenous Interruptions.” Mohawk Interruptus: Political Live Across the Borders of Settler States. (2014)
  • excerpt from Williams, Kayanesenh Paul. Kayanereko:wa: The Great Law of Peace. (2018)

Katherine O’Brien O’Keeffe

February 16th, 6 pm, NYU Med-Ren

“Praise Zealously, Weep Sorrowfully: Managing Affect in the Old English Metrical Psalms,”

Katherine O’Brien O’Keefe 

 “Praise Zealously, Weep Sorrowfully: Managing Affect in the Old English Metrical Psalms.”

Thursday, February 16 at 6:00 PM
19 University Place, room 222

The Old English Metrical Psalms of the Paris Psalter have been generally dismissed by modern readers for their lack of heroic vocabulary and tropes and their astonishing fondness for adverbs. Yet evidence of their citations between the tenth and twelfth centuries shows that the Metrical Psalms were the early English equivalent of a best seller. Understanding the contemporary appeal of the Metrical Psalms requires investigating the work of these translations in the context of late-tenth-century elite lay piety. The register of these translations and their reliance on adverbs resonate with pastoral concerns that Christians pray the psalms with inward devotion and appropriate affects. In the absence of the performative circumstances for praying the psalms in monastic and secular clerical communities, the adverbs of the Metrical Psalms work as affective cues to direct the laity how to feel while praying each psalm in private devotions.

Katherine O’Brien O’Keeffe is Clyde and Evelyn Slusser Professor of English Emerita, University of California, Berkeley.

Ronald Murphy

November 8, 2022, 4:00 PM EST

Ronald Murphy (Emeritus, Georgetown)

On The Tree of SalvationYggdrasil and the Cross in the North

at Columbia University

Sponsored by CEMS and the Department of English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University.

Tarren Andrews

November 4, 2022

Tarren Andrews (Yale University)

“Monstrous Property: or, Who Gets to Write an Epic Poem”

at Fordham University
12:00 pm, Joseph McShane Campus Center, 311

This talk will consider the socio-political legacies of Old English studies as they relate to current poetry. Old English and the tradition of epic poetry is a kind of “monstrous property” of the present settler colonial structures within which we all live. In the wake of such legacies, how do Indigenous scholars engage with Old English? In answer, this paper turns to Kumeyaay poet Tommy Pico’s epic, Nature Poem, to ask, how do Indigenous poets write an epic poem? How do they enter into and turn inside out a genre so intensely associated with Western ideals of whiteness, cultural capital, and monstrous possession?

Heide Estes

May 5, 2022

Heide Estes (Monmouth University)

“Disability, Gender, and Jews in Old English Poetry”

at Columbia University
5:30 pm, Philosophy Hall, 302