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IMC 2015: Sessions

Session 1713: Shifting Definitions of Medieval Epistolarity in Theory and Practice, III: Re-Using Letters in the Later Middle Ages

Thursday 9 July 2015, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:Prato Consortium for Medieval & Renaissance Studies
Organiser:Diana Marie Jeske, Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Studies, Monash University, Victoria
Moderator/Chair:Laura Carlson, Department of History, Queen's University, Ontario
Paper 1713-aPolitical Propaganda and Epistolary Fiction: Letters between Popes and Sultans and Their Use in the 15th Century
(Language: English)
Karoline Dominika Döring, Historisches Seminar, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Index terms: Language and Literature - Latin, Politics and Diplomacy
Paper 1713-bFrom Information-Transfer to Self-Reflection: The Letters of the Benedictine Nuns in Lüne, 1460-1550
(Language: English)
Lena Vosding, Institut für Geschichtswissenschaften, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf
Index terms: Language and Literature - Other, Religious Life

These three sessions investigate the parameters and problems of medieval letters as a genre, specifically the porous definition of letters throughout the medieval period (i.e. their varying application as legal contracts, sermons, etc.). Speakers will comment on methodological approaches and challenges scholars encounter when using letters as source material. Papers also will address how this permeability challenges our interpretation of these documents as well as the medieval understanding of the letter itself and its potential use. The third of these sessions analyzes the later medieval period, specifically addressing questions of new or unusual applications of epistolarity, such as forged material or letter collections not intended for distribution. This session will also capstone the whole series with a respondent who will comment on overall themes from the eight speakers.