CALL FOR PAPERS
International Congress on Medieval Studies
Kalamazoo, MI May 11-13, 2023
Ecological Seeing I – Teaching Environmental Art History
Ecological Seeing II – New Research in Environmental Art History
Sponsored by the Material Collective. Co-organized by Danielle Joyner (Lawrence University), Nancy Thebaut (Skidmore College) & Benjamin C. Tilghman (Washington College / The Material Collective)
The ongoing environmental crises facing our planet calls for action in every field. As teachers, medieval art historians can help their students make sense of the situation by exploring the ways people conceived of, saw, and interacted with the natural world in the Middle Ages. Sometimes, we might uncover habits of thought that persist into the present day; in other contexts, we might find that medieval people understood the natural world very differently from contemporary paradigms and in ways that can be instructive for us in the present. In the roundtable, Ecological Seeing I – Teaching Environmental Art History, participants will discuss their experiences building courses or individual class sessions around ecological topics, focusing on both challenges and successful strategies for helping students work with the material.
Ecological Seeing II – New Research in Environmental Art History is designed to address one particular challenge to teaching environmental art history: the relative dearth of secondary sources to support a course. There are only a few scholarly studies that take an ecocritical approach to medieval art, despite the expansion of the approach in other subfields of art history. We invite papers on any topic within medieval art that will help the field work towards a richer body of literature on the environmental art history of the Middle Ages.
Abstracts (300 words) due September 15 via the conference’s Confex system (https://wmich.edu/medievalcongress/call).
Questions? Please contact Nancy Thebaut at email@example.com