IMC 2008: Sessions

Session 1004: Politics and Political Thought in England

Wednesday 9 July 2008, 09.00-10.30

Moderator/Chair:Rory Cox, St Peter's College, University of Oxford
Paper 1004-aProphetic Nature in the War of the Roses: Folklore and Propaganda
(Language: English)
Kirsten Bell, St Chad's College, Durham University
Index terms: Folk Studies, Historiography - Medieval, Politics and Diplomacy
Paper 1004-bPolitics and Performance in Post-Reformation Chester: St. Werburgh's Abbey and the Harrowing of Hell
(Language: English)
Ted Lerud, Department of English, Elmhurst College, Illinois / Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Studies, University of Oxford
Index terms: Political Thought, Politics and Diplomacy

The War of the Roses was a struggle in which the combatants had to rely on more than just military might in order to gain the upper hand. The opponents may have played on the folklore beliefs of their subjects in order to propagate support for their side. Many everyday occurrences where believed to be prophetic, including many aspects of nature. These included, but were not limited to, voices on the wind, bodies of water, precipitation (or lack thereof), and astronomical sightings. Another example that was used as propaganda was the false description of Richard the Third’s unnatural physical appearance. Through my paper, I plan to explore the depth to which nature was discussed in a prophetic manner and the motive behind the recording of such accounts.
Abstract to follow.