Thursday, February 14, 2013

Calling all Northern Arthurian Enthusiasts!

The New Chaucer Society has published the CFP for its upcoming conference in Reykjavik (July 16-20), and I am already counting the days before I can hop on a plane and revisit Iceland — one of my favorite places on the planet.

This conference promises an array of exciting threads, and several of them focus on intersections between Scandinavian cultures and those of Continental and Insular medieval Europe. I'm going to be organizing and presiding over a session entitled "Northern Arthurs," and I'll provide the description here for easy reference:

This panel will explore the literary treatment of Arthur and his knights in the cultures of the North, a subject that Geraldine Barnes has identified as "ripe for further investigation within the fields of medieval translation, cross-cultural relations, and the reception of Arthurian narratives." Following the work of Marianne E. Kalinke's edited book The Arthur of the North, the panel seeks to inspire additional research in this area by addressing questions like the following: how does a study of the riddarasögur -- Scandinavian versions of Arthurian narratives -- offer up new perspectives on both the literary culture of the North and on the pervasiveness of Arthurian materials? How do such narratives reflect and adapt to their cultural surroundings? What does the transmission of such texts -- indelibly tied as they are to the traditions of continental and Insular Europe -- reveal about the intersections of Scandinavian, Continental European, and Insular traditions in the late Middle Ages?

If you, or anyone you know, are interested in submitting a paper proposal on this topic, you can reach me at I'll be accepting proposals through June 1st and would be delighted to hear from you. One of the many wonderful aspects of NCS is its active inclusion of graduate students, and I am hoping very much to include at least one grad student (if not more) in the session.

On a related (and important!) note, I also want to mention an upcoming conference in Oslo (23-25 May, 2013) entitled "The Arthur of the North." Paper proposals are due to the organizers by March 1st, and you can find all of the relevant details here. Marianne Kalinke — who has played a consistent and pivotal role in this emerging sub-field of Arthurian studies — will be one of the plenary speakers, as will David Wallace and Raluca Radulescu. All in all, it promises to be an exciting gathering, and I am looking forward to hearing all of the new ideas and conversations that will doubtless emerge.

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