Archive of Plenary Lectures

Richard Utz delivering the Saturday morning plenary lecture at the 2015 congress.

Richard Utz delivering the Saturday morning plenary lecture at the 2015 congress

This archive lists in reverse chronological order the plenary lectures at the International Congress on Medieval Studies (and, before 1979, the Conference on Medieval Studies) hosted by Western Michigan University's Medieval Institute.

2016

"How We Read J. J. R. Tolkien Reading Grendel's Mother"
Jane Chance
Rice University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Religion and the End of the Roman West"
Ian Wood
University of Leeds

2015

"Modern Toleration through a Medieval Lens: A 'Judgmental' View"
Cary J. Nederman
Texas A&M University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The Notion of the Middle Ages: Our Middle Ages, Ourselves" More.
Richard Utz
Georgia Institute of Technology

2014

"The Libel of the Lamb: Violence and Medieval Metaphor"
Susan L. Einbinder, University of Connecticut
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"What They Read, What They Saw, What They Heard: Composers and Sacred Music in Late Medieval Culture"
Anne Walters Robertson, University of Chicago
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2013

"Poseidon's Oar: Horizons of the Medieval Mediterranean"
Peregrine Horden, Royal Holloway, University of London
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Augustinian Intention and Medieval Aesthetic"
Mary Carruthers, New York University
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2012

"Conceptualizing Literary History: Europe, 1348-1418"
David Wallace, University of Pennsylvania
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The Heroic Age of Gothic: Invention and Its Contexts 1200-1400"
Paul Binski, University of Cambridge
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2011

"Outremer: Byzantine Art in a World of Multiple Christianities"
Annemarie Weyl Carr, Southern Methodist University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Gerald of Wales and the Ethnographic Imagination"
Robert Bartlett, University of St. Andrews
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer, Ltd.

2010

"Why Were Latin Qur'ans Produced in Christian Spain but Never Read There? Reflections on Spanish-Christian Culture during the Long Twelfth Century"
Thomas E. Burman, University of Tennessee-Knoxville
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The 'Clerical Proletariat' and the Rise of English: A New Look at Fourteenth-Century Book Production"
Kathryn Kerby-Fulton, University of Notre Dame
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer, Ltd.

2009

"Fictions of Conduct in Medieval France"
Roberta L. Krueger, Hamilton College
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Michael of Rhodes: A Venetian Seafarer and His Book"
Alan M. Stahl, Princeton University
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer, Ltd.

2008

"Seeing, Reading and Interpreting the Apocalypse in Complex Medieval Manuscripts"
Richard K. Emmerson, Florida State University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Are Bestiaries Really Psalters, and Vice Versa?"
Christopher de Hamel, University of Cambridge
Sponsored by the Richard Rawlinson Center and Boydell & Brewer

2007

"When Did the Near East Become Muslim? Patterns of Christian Decline in Palestine, Syria, and Mesopotamia, 634-1340"
R. Stephen Humphreys, University of California, Santa Barbara
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Dante’s Gift: Reflections on the 'Divine Comedy'"
Christopher Kleinhenz, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2006

"The Good, the Bad and the Ugly"
Madeline H. Caviness, Tufts University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Historical Fictions in Medieval Castile"
Alan D. Deyermond, Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer and the Ibero-Medieval Association of North America (IMANA)

2005

"Mastering Authority and Authorizing Mastery in the Long Twelfth Century"
Jan M. Ziolkowski, Harvard University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The Medieval Textual 'I'"
A. C. Spearing, University of Virginia 
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2004

"Making History: Actions and Agents within the Liturgical Framework of Time"
Margot Fassler, Yale University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Margin and Center: The Book of Hours and the Late Medieval Culture of Prayer"
Eamon Duffy, Magdalene College, University of Cambridge
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2003

"The Specter of Judaism in the Age of Mass Conversion: Spain 1391-1492"
David Nirenberg, Johns Hopkins University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The French of England: A Question of Cultural Traffic?"
Jocelyn Wogan-Browne, Fordham University 
Sponsored by Boydell & Brewer

2002

"Relics, Swords and the Stories They Tell in the 'Chanson de Roland'"
Eugene Vance, University of Washington
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Competing Conversations in the Generation of 1400: Townspeople, Inquisitors, Societies of the Devout and Women Writers"
John Van Engen, University of Notre Dame

2001

"Mural Paintings and Manuscripts as Evidence for the Papal 'Rapprochement' with Byzantium in the Ninth Century"
John Osborne, University of Victoria
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Reading the Heroes and Saints of Early Medieval Latin Literature"
Danuta Shanzer, Cornell University

2000

"The End of Christian Art"
Karl F. Morrison, Rutgers University
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Tensions, Ambiguities, and the Pressures of History: Constructing the Cultural Biography of Joseph the Carpenter"
Pamela Sheingorn, Baruch College and Graduate Center, CUNY

1999

"On the Performance of Medieval Music"
Christopher Page, University of Cambridge
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The Making of Maid Marian"
Stephen Knight, Cardiff University

1998

"From Roman Tax Exemptions to Medieval Holy Places: Landmarks in the History of Immunities"
Barbara H. Rosenwein, Loyola University, Chicago
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Oculus Paleographicus"
Rev. Leonard E. Boyle, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana

1997

"Gothic Ivory Carvings and the Limits of Connoisseurship"
Paul Williamson, Victoria and Albert Museum
Sponsored by the International Center of Medieval Art

"Alchemy and the Use of Vernacular Language in the Late Middle Ages"
Michela Pereira, Univeristà degli Studi di Siena
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"The Study of Pope Gregory VII"
H. E. J. Cowdrey, University of Oxford

1996

"Where East is West: Art and Its Viewers on Venetian Crete"
Robin Cormac, Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"When Did the Middle Ages End? Perspectives of an Intellectual Historian"
Marcia Colish, Oberlin College

1995

"'Scivias': Reading without Learning, Learning without Reading"
Michael Clanchy, Institute of Historical Research, University of London
Sponsored by the Medieval Academy of America

"Thomas Becket: The Construction and Deconstruction of a Saint from the Middle Ages to the Reformation"
Phyllis B. Roberts, Graduate School and University Center, CUNY

1994

"From the Ancient to the Medieval City: Continuity and Change in the Early Middle Ages (with Special Attention to Tours)"
Nancy Gauthier, Université de Tours

"Tobit’s Nights. A Scriptural (Fish)bone of Contention about Ethical Individualism"
Alain Boureau, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales

1993

"Medieval Transition from Latin to Romance before 1300"
Roger Wright, University of Liverpool

"Quis Teutonicos constituit judices nationum? Or, the Trouble with Heinrich"
Horst Fuhrmann, Monumenta Germaniae Historica

1992

"Latinate Jewish Wills in Medieval Spain"
Robert I. Burns, S.J., University of California, Los Angeles

"Witchcraft and Sainthood: Anthropological Problems and Structural Comparison"
Gabor Klaniczay, University of Budapest

1991

"The Oral Text of 'The Wanderer'"
J. B. Bessinger, Jr., New York University

"The Insular Tradition: An Overview"
Rosemary Cramp, Durham, England

1990

"Frederick Barbarossa as 'Lord of the World'"
Robert E. Benson, University of California, Los Angeles

"In Search of the Real Bernard"
Jean Leclerq, Abbaye Saint-Maurice, Clervaux

1989

"Norman Art of Sicily and Its Dynastic Patronage"
Beat Brenk, Universität Basel

"Sutton Hoo: The Pros and Cons"
Sir David Wilson, British Museum

1988

"Learning in the Middle Ages"
John Contreni, Purdue University

"The Theology of the Resurrection and Bodily Miracles in the Thirteenth Century"
Caroline Walker Bynum, Getty Center

1987

"Sermons for the People: The Anglo-Saxon Contribution"
James Cross, University of Liverpool

"Why and How to Write the Biography of a Medieval Character: Saint Louis?"
Jacques LeGoff, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales

1986

"Society and the Body: The Social Meaning of Asceticism in Late Antiquity"
Peter Brown, Princeton University

"The Carolingian Age: Reflections on Its Place in the History of the Middle Ages"
Richard Sullivan, Michigan State University

1985

"Signs and Ceremonies in Medieval Monasticism"
Giles Constable, Harvard University

"Looking at William Caxton: The Historian's Eye and the Bibliographer's Eye"
Paul Needham, Pierpont Morgan Library

1984

"Representation of Time in the Late Middle Ages"
John Leyerle, University of Toronto

"The Legacy of John Wyclif"
Anne Hudson, University of Oxford

1983

"King Arthur as a Medium for Political Action"
Karl-Heinz Goeller,Universität Regensburg

"Crisis of Faith in the Twelfth Century"
Karl Bosl, Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften

1982

Address at the Public Session of the Fellows of the Medieval Academy of America
Laurence K. Shook, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies

1981

"The Crusades from the Point of View of Byzantium"
Sir Steven Runciman, Dumfriesshire, Scotland

"Roots and Essence of Colonialism: Medieval Attitudes to Alien Culture and Society"
Joshua Prawer, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

1980

"The Miracles of St. Benedict"
Benedicta Ward, University of Oxford

"Albert the Great and Medieval Culture"
James Weisheipl, O.P., Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies

1979

"How Original was Joachim of Fiore's Theology of History?"
Marjorie Reeves, University of Oxford

"Nova et Vetera: On the Improvement of Our Methods"
Leopold Genicot, Université de Louvain

"Reform and Revolution in Sixteenth-Century Germany: Perspectives of Research and Discussion"
Günter Volger, Alexander Humboldt Universität

1978

"Rhetoric and Philosophy in the Renaissance"
Paul Oskar Kristeller, Columbia University

"The Rhetoric of Damnation: the Poetics of Dante's 'Inferno'"
John Freccero, Yale University

1977

"The Idea of Man in the Middle Ages"
Gordon Leff, University of York

"Interaction of Social and Religious Changes in Germany, 1400-1600"
Heiko A. Oberman, Universität Tübingen

"The Familia as a Basic Structure of Medieval Society"
Karl Bosl, Universität München

1976

"Image and Text in the Early Middle Ages: Some Problems in Interpretation"
Paul J. Meyvaert, Mediaeval Academy of America

"The Social Context of Medieval Love Language in Religious, Courtly, and Popular Literature"
Jean Leclerq, Clervaux, Rome, and Western Michigan University

1975

"Children in Medieval Art"
Ilene H. Forsyth, University of Michigan

"Bernard of Clairvaux and the Language of Love"
Jean Leclerq, Clervaux, Rome, and Western Michigan University

1974

"It Seems There Is No God, 1256/1274"
Edward A. Synan, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies

"Saint Bonaventure: Some Aspects of His Life and Doctrine"
Theodore Crowley, OFM, Queen’s University, Belfast

1973

"The Notion of the 'Middle Ages' and the Future of Medieval Research"
Karl Ferdinand Werner, Institut historique allemand, Paris

1972

"Modern Psychology and Medieval Studies"
Jean Leclerq, Clervaux and Rome

1971

"The Plowman and the Tree: Labor and Grace in the Fourteenth Century"
John Leyerle, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto

1970

"What Is the Most Significant Feature of Medieval Rhetoric?"
Panel discussion, chaired by James J. Murphy, University of California, Davis

1968

"The Reformation of the Twelfth Century"
Giles Constable, Harvard University

1966

"Visual Exegesis in Medieval Art"
Harry Bober, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University

1964

"Gerald the Welshman"
Urban Tigner Holmes, University of North Carolina

1962

"The Nature and Value of Medieval Studies"
Laurence K. Shook, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies

"The Notion of the Middle Ages"
Laurence K. Shook, Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies