Call for Papers – ICMS 2023

The International Marie de France Society invites submissions for the International Congress on Medieval Studies, to be held May 8-10, 2023 at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo. All submissions are due via the Congress’ Confex web interface by September 15, 2023. Click here for access.

Marie de France and the Medieval Fable Tradition: Text, Image, and Context
The Fables of Marie de France stands as the first vernacular collection of Aesopian fables; it was also Marie’s most popular work among medieval audiences, surviving in 25 manuscripts. This panel seeks to revisit Marie de France’s Fables in their original, manuscript context by inviting papers that highlight the relationship between the written word and images or other paratextual material. Proposals are also invited by scholars working on the wider medieval fable tradition with which Marie’s Fables connect, including but not limited to the Romulus Nilantii and the Hebrew fables of Berechiah ha-Nakdan. Proposals are encouraged from any discipline(s).

Women and Knowledge in the Works of Marie de France
Marie de France is an author who asserts her knowledge and who creates women and female animal characters that embody and impart forms of wisdom, care-giving, medicine, and savoir-faire. We seek contributions that examine the role(s) of feminine forms of knowledge, wisdom, mysticism, and medicine in the œuvre of Marie de France. Interdisciplinary and intertextual approaches are welcome.

Monstrosity, Madness, and Marie de France

This panel examines encounters with monstrosity, madness, isolation, identity, and alterity. We seek contributions that explore the themes of disability, deformity, illness, mental health, transformation, and more in the works of Marie de France (the Lais, the Fables, the Espurgatoire seint Patriz, and/or La Vie Seinte Audree). Intertextual and interdisciplinary approaches that connect Marie’s œuvre to the larger medieval world are welcome.

“Performances of Marie de France”
In this performance session, three to five performers of medieval narrative will present a lai and/or fables of Marie de France. In the past, these performances have involved period music, new translations, and/or dramatic readings in the original language; we expect this tradition to continue. Hearing a text read aloud or watching its performance both mirrors the way the work would have been consumed in the Middle Ages and enhances our modern understanding. Attendees regularly report that their perception of the work changes over the course of the session.