Call for Papers: Medieval Academy of America 2025 Conference

The Medieval Academy at 100
The 2025 Annual Meeting of the Medieval Academy of America
Harvard University, Cambridge MA
20-22 March 2025  

Call for Papers:

The Centennial Meeting of the Medieval Academy of America will take place on the campus of Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, hosted by Harvard University, Boston College, Boston University, Brandeis University, Fitchburg State University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stonehill College, Tufts University, and Wellesley College. While the conference will take place in person, the plenary lectures and some other events also will be live streamed. Plenary addresses will be delivered by Kristina Richardson (Professor of History and Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures, University of Virginia), Sara Lipton (Incoming President of the Medieval Academy of America and Professor of History, Stony Brook University), and Wendy Belcher (Professor of Comparative Literature and African American Studies, Princeton University). The Annual Meeting will be followed by the Sunday annual meeting of the Medieval Academy's Committee on Centers and Regional Associations (CARA).

Conference Location: The conference sessions, receptions, and pre-conference programs will take place at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Harvard campus is accessible by taxi and public transit from Boston's Logan Airport as well as from the South and Back Bay Amtrak stations. In addition to Harvard's own museums and libraries, visitors can take advantage of greater Boston's rich dining, entertainment, and cultural resources, including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and the Boston Public Library, all easily reached by the MBTA subway from Harvard Square.

Proposals: The Program Committee invites proposals for papers and panels on any topic from scholars studying the medieval world in all its variety, in all disciplines, regions, and periods of Medieval Studies. Panels usually consist of three 25-minute papers, and proposals should be geared to that length. Panel organizers, however, may wish to propose different formats for their panels, and the Program Committee may choose a different format for some panels after the proposals have been reviewed. Any member of the Medieval Academy may submit a paper or panel proposal. Others may submit proposals as well, but they must become members in order to present at the meeting. Exceptions may be given to individuals whose specialty would not normally involve membership in the Medieval Academy. Please contact MAA Executive Director Lisa Fagin Davis ([email protected]) with any questions about this policy.

We are particularly interested in papers and panels that cross traditional disciplinary and geographical boundaries, or that use various approaches to examine a given topic. Our goal is to create a rich and diverse program that embodies the conference theme "The Medieval Academy at 100,” placing detailed, methodologically rigorous scholarship on the Middle Ages into conversation with broader reflections on the histories and possible futures of Medieval Studies itself. We encourage those proposing papers and panels to engage with one or more of the threads below.

Threads: The Program Committee has created six threads for the Centennial Meeting, meant to promote critical engagement between scholars working on all aspects of the medieval world, as well as on more modern appraisals and interpretations of that world. These are:

1. Who? Subjects of Medieval Studies. Possible topics might include: identities (race, ethnicity, gender, religion); animals and the non-human; abilities and disabilities; and communities in theory and practice.

2. What? Definitions, Reevaluations, and Transformations. Possible topics might include: canons and canonicity; orthodoxies and heterodoxies; laws and norms; science and scientia; disciplines of/and Medieval Studies; and making the "Middle Ages", 1925-2025.  

3. When? Beginnings, Endings, and Possible Futures. Possible topics might include: remembering and forgetting; periodizations and paradigms; environmental, evolutionary, and geological perspectives on the medieval; and the future(s) of Medieval Studies, 2025-2125.

4. Where? Space, Place, and Geographies. Possible topics might include: people, things, and ideas on the move; frontiers and boundaries; opportunities and challenges of the “global turn”; landscapes, wilderness, and lived environments; and preservation and effacement of the medieval.

5. Why? Reverence, Recycling, and Rejection of the Middle Ages. Possible topics might include: medievalisms and popular cultures of the medieval; aesthetics of the medieval; politics and the medieval, then and now; and what the Middle Ages might do for us today.

6. How? Frameworks for Research, Teaching, and Public Engagement. Possible topics might include: translation in theory and practice; digital medieval studies; the science of the medieval past; the Middle Ages in the contemporary classroom; and curating and exhibiting the medieval.

Submissions: Individuals may either propose individual papers or a full panel of papers and speakers, using the links provided below. Paper proposals should include the individual's name, professional affiliation (including independent scholar), contact information, paper title, and a brief (c. 150-word) abstract. Session proposals should include the name and contact information for the session organizer, the session title, a c. 500-word abstract, and information for each of the session participants (including proposed chairs and respondents). Those submitting paper and session proposals also will be asked to indicate the thread(s) with which their contributions might best be associated. All submissions are due by Monday, 3 June 2024. If you have any questions, please direct them to the Program Committee chairs at [email protected].  

Individual paper proposals:

Panel Proposals:

The Medieval Academy offers several travel bursaries and awards in conjunction with the Annual Meeting. For more information and to apply for a bursary or award please visit:


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