Keynote Lecture with Lisa Fagin Davis (Boston, USA): Framing Fragments

When: Monday, 3 April 2023, 5-6.45 pm
Where: Weston Library, Lecture Theatre
Speaker: Dr Lisa Fagin Davis (Medieval Academy of America)
Admission: free, but registration is required

We are delighted to have Lisa Fagin Davis as a keynote speaker. The lecture is part of the workshop ‘Cultures of Use and Reuse. Towards a Terminological and Methodological Framework of Reframing and Recycling‘.

About the Keynote Lecture
Applying the theme of Use and Reuse to the practice of manuscript fragmentation, this lecture will address the material and ontological “framing” of leaves of dismembered manuscripts. Manuscript leaves undergo multiple types of “framing” as they journey from their medieval haptic origins to the digital realm. A parchment leaf begins as the hide on an animal’s skeletal framework, a fleshly origin whose shape is permanently imprinted on the folio. That hide is then stretched on a pergamenter’s frame for scudding and preparation for trimming and writing. The book’s binding is another framelike container that holds the leaf and provides its spatial boundaries. If a manuscript is dismembered, the leaf may find itself contained not in a binding but in a matte, the matte then framed for presentation on a wall. As we move into the digital space, images must be themselves contained in the frame of a viewer. What can we make of these various transformations and the frames that contain and constrain them?

About the Speaker
Lisa Fagin Davis received her Ph.D. in Medieval Studies from Yale University in 1993. She is a paleographer, codicologist, and bibliographer with a particular interest in pre-1600 manuscript fragments and collections in North America. She has served as the supervisor or principal investigator for several digital reconstructions of dismembered manuscripts using shared-canvas viewers and IIIF-compliant images. She has served as Executive Director of the Medieval Academy of America since 2013 and was elected to the Comité international de paléographie latine in 2019.

How to Register for the Event
If you wish to attend the keynote lecture, please register via this link.

Contact Details
For any enquires regarding the event, please contact: JProf. Dr Julia von Ditfurth (, Dr Hannah Ryley ( or Carolin Gluchowski (

This event this generously supported by the Oxford Berlin Research Partnership, New College, Balliol College, the Centre for the Study of the Book, the Ashmolean Museum, and the Bodleian Library. We are delighted to collaborate with Henrike Lähnemann, Alexandra Franklin, Andrew Dunning, and Jim Harris.

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