Disciplining Texts

Saturday, February 9, 2008

McCune Conference Room, 6020 HSSB, UCSB

9:30 a.m. Light Breakfast

10 a.m. Rachel Fulton, Department of History, University of Chicago, Ph.D. Columbia University. Author of From Judgment to Passion: Devotion to Christ and the Virgin Mary, 800-1200 (2002) , recipient of the 2006 John Nicholas Brown Prize by the Medieval Academy of America and the Morris D. Forkosch Prize by The Journal of the History of Ideas and co-editor with Bruce Holsinger of History in the Comic Mode: Medieval Communities and the Matter of Person (2007), as well as author of an array of articles in journals including Speculum, The Journal of Religion, Medieval Studies, and Viator.

"Hildegard of Bingen's Theology of Revelation." A reading of the book Scivias as a coherently structured work of theology, rather than, as has so often been claimed, simply a loosely connected series of visions. Points for discussion will include the appreciation of theology as a particular kind of intellectual task, the relationship between theology, revelation and vision, and the reasons that not only contemporary scholars, but likewise Hildegard's immediate followers had such difficulty appreciating her work and what this says about our own categories of textual analysis.

11-11:15 Break

11:15 Zrinka Stahuljak, Department of French, UCLA, Ph.D. Emory University. Author of Bloodless Genealogies of the French Middle Ages: Translatio, Kinship, and Metaphor (2005) and co-editor with Claire Nouvet and Kent Still of Minima Memoria: Essays in the Wake of Jean-François Lyotard, as well as essays on medieval historiography, translation and translation theory, and violence and neutrality.

"Genealogy and Its Discourse." As Jacques Le Goff, Anita Guerreau-Jalabert, Caroline Bynum, and others have recently been pointing out, blood in its meaning of lineage was infrequent before the fifteenth century. Thus the question that must be asked is how blood acquired such an importance in the study of medieval genealogy in the twentieth century. In other words, why was blood accepted as a natural given of medieval genealogy, rather than, for instance, a metaphor or narrative tool for lineage? Conversely, why has medieval genealogy not been studied as a discursive practice? Part of the answer lies, I will argue, in the nineteenth-century medical notions of heredity and consaguinity.

12:15-1:45 Lunch

1:45 Jennifer Hellwarth, Department of English, Allegheny College, Ph.D. UCSB. Author of The Reproductive Unconscious in Late Medieval and Early Modern England (2002) and essays on medieval medicine and literature in medieval and early modern texts, including "‘materia medica /materia magica’: Managing the Anglo-Saxon Sexual Body Through Female Healers, Charms, Penitentials, Laws, and the early English Romance Apollonius of Tyre.”

"Sex, salves, and matters of state in Chrétien de Troyes’ Cligés." The medieval sexual body was managed through a variety of systems including civil, common, and canon laws, penitentials, medicinal and magical recipes and remedies, and imaginative literature. Taken together, these texts provide multiple narratives about the potential threat and benefits of the sexual body (and the female healers who sought to manage that body) to the community. I want explore this matrix by reading some extant medicinal recipes and selections of early medieval laws and penitentials that deal with magic and magical practices related to the sexual body along side Chretien de Troyes’ Cligés. Among other things, Cligés provides a narrative about a female healer’s use of magical medicine to manipulate the sexual body, which ultimately has implications in matters of state. I want to explore the ways the documentary evidence suggests ambivalence around the culture’s relationship to the sexual body and the female practitioners who managed it.

2:45-3:00 Break

3:00 Daniel M. Klerman, Charles L. and Ramona I. Hilliard Professor of Laws and History, USC Gould School of Law, J.D. and Ph.D. University of Chicago. Recipient of the David Yale Prize from the Selden Society for distinguished contribution to the history of the laws and legal institutions of England and Wales. Author of many articles on current, early modern, and medieval topics, including the development of Common Law, jurisdictional competition amongst medieval courts, and “Women Prosecutors in Thirteenth-Century England.”

"Reading and Analyzing Medieval Legal Texts." Medieval legal records are a rich source for social, political, and legal history. Professor Klerman will discuss approaches to analyzing legal texts, focusing on close interpreation of individual cases and quantification. He will illustrate these methods with work he has done on women prosecutors and the history of the jury.

4:00 General Discussion


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