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IMC 2020: Sessions

Session 629: Enclosed for Life: The Rigidity (or Permeability) of Anchoritic Borders, II - Borders in Literature

Tuesday 7 July 2020, 11.15-12.45

Sponsor:International Anchoritic Society
Organiser:Victoria Yuskaitis, Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds
Moderator/Chair:Alicia Smith, Queen's College, University of Oxford
Paper 629-aBordering Existence: Living Death in Julian of Norwich's Revelations
(Language: English)
Laura Kalas Williams, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Research (MEMO), Swansea University
Index terms: Language and Literature - Middle English, Medicine, Religious Life, Theology
Paper 629-bRecurrent Terms and Expressions in Middle English Mystical Works as a Ritual
(Language: English)
Fumiko Yoshikawa, Hiroshima Shudo University
Index terms: Language and Literature - Middle English, Religious Life, Rhetoric, Theology
Paper 629-cRecluses in the City: Borders and the Urban Anchorhold
(Language: English)
Laura Moncion, Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Toronto, Downtown
Index terms: Daily Life, Religious Life, Sermons and Preaching

Medieval anchorites were simultaneously enclosed within cells and exposed through the presence of these cells; restricted physically and unrestrained mentally; dead to the world and reliant upon the church community to fulfil their vocations. The walls of the anchorite cell have been described as tomb-like, but also as permeable via the few windows. Can a border exist without the potential for that boundary to be breached? Is there a difference between the rhetoric of borders and the lived experience of these boundaries? How were anchoritic borders created and maintained, and for what purpose - and what happened when these borders failed to function?