CFP for ICMS 2020: Materiality of Knowledge , due 15 Sept 2019

CFP: The Materiality of Knowledge

International Congress on Medieval Studies
Kalamazoo (May 7-10, 2020)


Anna Majeski, PhD candidate, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University
Austin Powell, PhD candidate, The Catholic University of America

As vehicles for authoritative texts, as images in miniature or monumental settings, as objects imbricated in practice, or as architectural containers, material artifacts stood at the intersection between abstract intellectual concepts, and the body of the active viewer/reader. But material objects not only served as means to embody knowledge, they transformed, extended, and disseminated knowledge in spaces of lived experience. This panel will bring together medievalists across many disciplines increasingly grappling with how material artifacts and their contexts shaped the perception, reception and performance of knowledge. Our interdisciplinary approach will facilitate scholars’ engagement with new questions, methodologies, and approaches.

This session applies a cross-disciplinary approach to the materiality of knowledge in context by bringing together historians whose ‘objects’ are more traditionally textual together with historians of material and visual culture. Scholars in these fields often consider different kinds of artifacts, and ask different questions about them.

Areas we hope to address include: the materiality of texts and manuscripts, their transmission, and revision; how historical practices reframed and animated objects of knowledge; scientific instruments; the embodied and spatial dimensions of diagrammatic or encyclopedic imagery; spatial contexts for the production or communication of knowledge; material objects and images in legal contexts.

Deadline and requirements:

Please send an abstract (250 words) and CV by September 15, 2019 to Anna Majeski ( and Austin Powell (