International Conference 'The Medieval Literary Canon in the Digital Age'

17-09-2018 09:00 to 18-09-2018 17:00
Ghent, Ghent University, Plateau Building: 'Jozef Plateau' conference room (Plateaustraat 22)
Jeroen De Gussem
Add to my calendar

The Medieval Literary Canon in the Digital Age (CfP)

poster-mcda.pngAn often repeated promise of the digital humanities, in the wake of the “computational turn”, is that the wide availability and accessibility of historical texts enables scholars to breach the restrictions of a literary canon. Such a potential for literary computing prominently returns in the works of computing literary theorists. The assertions that quantification entails a “widening of the canon” and eventually the advance of a “new philology”, easily invoke medievalists’ inquisitiveness. How, exactly, can the digital humanities provide such insights for the Middle Ages?

As voices increasingly proclaim the emancipation of the digital humanities from their merely supportive role, and as the tools for digital medieval studies proliferate (e.g. digital scholarly editing, computational stylistics, digital palaeography, digital stemmatology, …), this conference seeks out a confrontation between the two “new” philologies and their respective approaches towards a canon that has been formed under an “old” philology. It welcomes research that both problematizes the specialized character of medieval literary production, and yet demonstrates the potential for computational criticism to “breach” or “widen” the medieval canon through digital tools.

The following invited speakers have confirmed their participation: Godfried Croenen (University of Liverpool) / Maciej Eder (Pedagogical University of Kraków) / Julie Orlemanski (University of Chicago) / Peter Robinson (University of Saskatchewan) / Karina van Dalen-Oskam (University of Amsterdam) / David J. Wrisley (New York University Abu Dhabi).

Until May 10th 2018, the call for papers is open for a maximum of 8 scholars in addition to the confirmed speakers. The conference will consist exclusively of plenary sessions, with ample time for discussion.

The conference committee encourages proposal submissions by both established and junior researchers. Please send abstracts (ca. 300 words) and a five-line biography via email to . Participants will receive a notification concerning the acceptance of their application by the end of May.
We expect from our applicants that they have the ability of covering their own travel costs. Accepted speakers are offered lunches and an invitation to our conference dinner. Accepted speakers from abroad (any country other than Belgium) will also be offered up to 3 hotel nights in Ghent.