With IMC 2019 just a few days away, we are looking to the future and making plans for IMC 2020. We are delighted that the call for papers and session proposals for IMC 2020: Borders is now live.
The 27th International Medieval Congress will take place at the University of Leeds between Monday 6 July and Thursday 9 July 2020, and we anticipate around 2,500 speakers to present at 750 sessions over four days.
As Europe’s largest conference in the humanities, the IMC seeks to provide an interdisciplinary forum, bringing together a global community of medieval scholars from a wide variety of disciplines. As such, the Call for Papers welcomes contributions not just on the theme of ‘Borders’ but on all aspects of Medieval Studies.
Medieval borders have preoccupied scholars for several decades in various guises. The term ‘border’ designates a wide variety of phenomena: physical geographical limits, that can be signalled by border markers or natural features, points where toll has to be paid, political boundaries, that vary from points in space to linear and fortified military fronts, ways of controlling space, frontier zones, borderlands, porous zones of encounters and contact, ways of limiting community and identity, ideological and metaphorical delimitation including discourse and representation, bordering practices, the process of creating and performing borders, and borderscapes to capture fluidity and change over time. This strand seeks to bring together medievalists of all fields interested in both the theory and practice of borders in all their variety, from physical boundaries and material borders to dynamic social and spatial relationships.
We spoke to IMC Director, Axel Müller, about the importance of this year’s theme. “Borders in the Middle Ages – as today – serve as points of demarcation (and also meeting points) of different cultures, communities and societies. Often borders are perceived (or actual) concepts which have a strong subjective association which are reflected in emotive responses by individuals and groups.
“It is important to discuss the development, change, and overcoming of borders at an international meeting such as the International Medieval Congress at Leeds.”
The Special Thematic Strand ‘borders’ will be co-ordinated by Prof. Nora Berend (Faculty of History / St Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge), and all paper and session proposals will be reviewed by the IMC Programming Committee. Prof. Berend’s research covers medieval themes in modern nationalism, canon law, and the role of non-Christians in medieval Christian society.
The deadline for individual paper submissions is 31 August 2019. Session proposals must be submitted by 30 September 2019.
Session and paper proposals received after the deadline will not be considered.