Workshop ‘Cultures of Use and Reuse. Towards a Terminological and Methodological Framework of Reframing and Recycling’

When?          3-6 April 2023

What?            In recent years, various terms and concepts have emerged to analyse the phenomena of use and re-use of medieval objects. This workshop will work towards a common terminological and methodological framework, starting with two key approaches: recycling and reframing. An interdisciplinary group of scholars will offer insights into their own research and their respective academic fields in a series of seminars and visits to collections based in Oxford.

Call for Papers is closed now. If you wish to participate in this workshop (non-speaker), please email Dr Hannah Ryley (hannah.ryley@ell.ox.ac.uk) or Carolin Gluchowski (carolin.gluchowski@new.ox.ac.uk).

Convenors: JProf. Dr Julia. von Ditfurth (Faculty of Art History, University of Freiburg); Dr Hannah Ryley (Balliol College, University of Oxford); Carolin Gluchowski, M.A. (New College, University of Oxford) in collaboration with the Ashmolean Museum Oxford, the Bodleian Libraries Oxford, Balliol College Library, and New College Library.

Image: Bodleian Library MS. Lat. liturg. f. 4, 9r: The prayerbooks of the Cistercian convent of Medingen are an outstanding example for the reworking of manuscripts in the course of late-medieval church reforms.

Early Text Cultures Workshop: Translating Cultures in Contact

Dear all,

The Early Text Cultures research network at the University of Oxford is pleased to announce the programme of the workshop Translating Cultures in Contact, which will conclude the seminar series on Textual Cultures in Contact. The event will take place online on Zoom, on Tuesday 5th July, from 9:00 to 16:00 BST (UK time). 

The event will explore dynamics of textual and cultural translation in Hellenistic Egypt, the medieval Latin, Greek and Arabic worlds, and Tibet and Mongolia. Please find the programme below; abstracts can be found on our website.

To receive the Zoom link for the event, please register here

9:00–9.10        Welcome and Opening Remarks

Domenico Giordani, UCL / University of Oxford

9:10–10:20       SESSION I: BYZANTINE TRANSLATIONS OF LATIN

CHAIR: Domenico Giordani, UCL / University of Oxford

1.  On the boundaries of philology and history of science: the Greek translation of the Semita Recta

Flavio Bevacqua, Università degli Studi di Padova

2. Translating Saint Jerome into Greek: the Life of Hilarion (BHL 3879)

Anna Lampadaridi, Paris, CNRS (UMR 5189 HiSoMA)

10:20–11:30     FIRST BREAK

11:30–12:30     SESSION II: HELLENISING ANCIENT EGYPT

CHAIR: Jordan Miller, University of Oxford

3.  Textual and Historical Observations on Inscribed Foundation Plaques of Hellenistic Egypt

Efstathia Dionysopoulou, Université de Lyon II

4. Untranslatability and the Case of Ptolemaic Priestly Decrees

Giulia Tonon, University of Liverpool

12:30–13:30     LUNCH BREAK

13:30–14:40     SESSION III: TRANSLATING FOUNDATIONAL FIGURES

CHAIR: Natasha Downs, University of Edinburgh

5.  Tibetan Buddhism and the Cult of Chinggis Khan

Dotno Pount, University of Pennsylvania

6. Greco-Arabic, Beyond Translation: Homer by the Rivers of Babylon

Teddy Fassberg, Tel Aviv University

14:40–15:00     THIRD BREAK

15:00–16:00     SESSION IV: FINAL ROUNDTABLE

CHAIR: Flaminia Pischedda, University of Oxford

If you have any questions, please get in touch with us by replying to this email. Please do feel free to forward this email to anyone who may be interested. 

We look forward to seeing you there! 

All best wishes, 
ETC Board 


Workshop Report: ‘The Murbach Hymns (MS. Junius 25) – Vernacular Glossing in the Early Middle Ages’

The workshop ‘The Murbach Hymns (MS. Junius 25) – Vernacular Glossing in the Early Middle Ages’ (17–18 February 2022) highlighted a remarkable text ensemble: the Murbach hymns, a Latin hymnal with Old High German interlinear glosses. Taking this text, one of the oldest sources of Old High German, and its manuscript MS. Junius 25 (Oxford, Bodleian Library) as starting point, the importance of vernacular glossing and writing in the Early Middle Ages became clear: It sits at the crossroads of theological, linguistic, and layout approaches to the text.

Helen Gittos and Luise Morawetz discussing MS. Rawl. C. 697 (Oxford, Bodleian Library) at the Weston Library.

Participants from all over the world were able to participate thanks to the hybrid conference format, accessible online as well as in person. To allow all participants the same close-up insights into the materiality of the valuable and fragile manuscripts, the workshop opened with a presentation of the manuscript MS. Junius 25. Due to the excellent equipment of the Bodleian Library, it came to life in the expert hands of the curators, who turned the pages and the whole volume as real-time reaction to questions and requests from the audience, who were introduced to the material and linguistic peculiarities of the rare object. The speakers present at Oxford had the chance to consult and discuss the original manuscripts beforehand.

Over the course of further sessions, scholars from different research communities came together and presented their work on linguistics, pragmatics and material studies. Combining different disciplines resulted in a comprehensive survey of the use and characteristics of vernacular in the Early Middle Ages, including Old High German, Old Frisian and Old English. The theoretical insights were put into practice in a Latin-Old High German compline, which demonstrated how the oldest variety of the German language could be brought back to life. For the first time in history, the glosses of the Murbach hymns were set to music, among other Old High German texts read during the service. The workshop was brought to a close with a consultation of further glossed manuscripts of the Bodleian Library (MS. Auct. F. 1. 16, MS. Rawl. C. 697, MS. Canon. Pat. Lat. 57), partly neither digitised nor edited, which put the focus again on the object – the foundation of historical linguistic studies.

The St Edmund Consort performing the Latin-Old High German compline in the crypt
of St-Peter-in-the-East in Oxford.

The event was designed as a workshop and was intended to allow the participants to interact with each other and develop ideas collectively. Extended breaks were included in which discussions could continue in person as well as online. This opportunity was used by many, despite sessions already overrunning to address all questions. During the sessions, breakout groups allowed smaller groups of participants to share their thoughts before entering the main discussion, enabling equal contributions from listeners and speakers and leading to lively participation.

The interdisciplinary approach to early vernacular and the workshop format worked well, as the high numbers of registrations and intense and vibrant discussions showed. The workshop brought the exciting text and manuscript of the Murbach hymns back into the focus of linguistic research.

We hope to deepen the collaborations established during the event and continue the debates about the status of the vernacular in the Early Middle Ages in future, exploring the interdisciplinary approach further and testing it on other material from the rich collections of Oxford and beyond.

The manuscript in focus. The setup of the workshop in St Edmund Hall (Oxford) during the presentation of Auct. F. 1. 16 (Oxford, Bodleian Library).

I want to thank all participants and supporters of this workshop, above all the speakers (in order of their presentations): Prof. Dr Daniela Mairhofer (Princeton); Prof. Dr Michael Stolz (Bern); Dr Elke Krotz (Vienna); Dr Matthias Standke (Berlin); Prof. Dr Alderik Blom (Marburg); Dr Helen Gittos (Oxford); Prof. em. Dr Elvira Glaser (Zurich); Prof. Dr Stephan Müller (Vienna).

I also want to thank the team of the Bodleian Libraries, Dr Alexandra Franklin, Dr Matthew Holford and Dr Andrew Dunning; Tom Revell, who produced this event; James Whitbourn, who set the Murbach hymns to music, and the St Edmund Consort, who performed the compline; and Will Thurlwell, Prof. Dr Howard Jones and Prof. Dr Henrike Lähnemann, who supported the workshop in person.


In association with the Bodleian Libraries and Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by the Centre for the Study of the Book (CSB), The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH) and the University Council of Modern Languages (UCML).

Convenor: Luise Morawetz (luise.morawetz@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk)

Webinar: The Murbach Hymns (MS. Junius 25) – Vernacular Glossing in the Early Middle Ages

This webinar (17th/18th of February 2022) centres around the Murbach hymns, a Latin hymnal with Old High German interlinear glosses from the ninth century, whose manuscript and textual context will be examined, as well as, on a wider scale, the use and function of vernacular language in the early Middle Ages. The manuscript MS. Junius 25 and other glossed manuscripts from the Bodleian Library will be presented and analysed, giving the audience the opportunity to view these valuable objects up close. In three discussion sessions, the materiality of the manuscripts and their content will be set in context with each other, drawing a connection between the object and its use. The focus will initially be on the texts of MS. Junius 25. In further sessions, the use of vernacular language in different cultural contexts and the emergence and function of (vernacular) glosses will be explored.


PROGRAMME
All times are GMT.


Thursday, 17 February 2022


2-3 pm: Meet the Manuscript: MS. Junius 25 and the Murbach Hymnal

MS. Junius 25

  • Prof. Dr Daniela Mairhofer (Princeton)
  • Luise Morawetz (Oxford)
  • Prof. Dr Henrike Lähnemann (Oxford)
  • Dr Matthew Holford (Oxford)

3.45-5 pm: A Textual Analysis of the Manuscript

  • Prof. Dr Michael Stolz (Bern): Marginalien zu MS. Junius 25
  • Dr Elke Krotz (Vienna): The Glossaries Junius A, B and C
  • Dr Matthias Standke (Berlin): Murbacher Hymnar? Begriffs‑ und Überlieferungsgeschichte: Versuch einer Einordnung

9.15 pm: Latin-Old High German Compline in the Crypt of St-Peter-in-the-East. Live streamed via youtube. Booklet with texts.

Friday, 18 February 2022


9-10 am: Vernacular Language in Use

  • Prof. Dr Alderik Blom (Marburg): Two Old Frisian Glosses on the Psalms
  • Dr Helen Gittos (Oxford): Vernacular languages in medieval liturgy

11-12 am: The Practice of Glossing

  • Prof. em. Dr Elvira Glaser (Zurich): The Functionality of Vernacular (Old High German) Glosses
  • Prof. Dr Stephan Müller (Vienna): Alliterations and Abbreviations. How to discover the German language between Latin lines of the Murbach hymns

2-3.30 pm: Meet the Manuscript 2: Consultation of other Glossed Manuscripts from the Bodleian

MS. Auct. F. 1. 16, MS. Rawl. C. 697, MS. Canon. Pat. Lat. 57

  • Prof. Dr Daniela Mairhofer (Princeton)
  • Luise Morawetz (Oxford)
  • Prof. Dr Henrike Lähnemann (Oxford)
  • Dr Matthew Holford (Oxford)

The presentations and papers will be published online before the event. Questions for the speakers can be asked during the sessions or before the event via Twitter (#MurbachHymns) or email (luise.morawetz@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk, reference: Workshop Murbach Hymns). Papers here (password protected; please register here for the event to get access). If you have any questions, please contact Luise Morawetz (via email or Twitter).

In association with the Bodleian Libraries and Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH) and the University Council of Modern Languages (UCML).


The first lines of the Murbach hymns (fol. 122v, Oxford, Bodleian Library MS. Junius 25).

Workshop: Body, Gender, Purity, and Sexual Pleasure: Biblical and Medieval Models

Friday November 19th 13.00-14.30 

Location: St John’s College, New Seminar Room

In medieval Europe, Jews and Christians put some of the same cultural resources (the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament) to different uses. Stereotypes abound here: Judaism is seen to be preoccupied with ritual pollution, Christianity with moral purity; Judaism is anxious about food, but celebrates marital sex. Christianity has fewer food laws, but many more anxieties about sexual activity—and about the body as a potential source of sin. All of these dichotomic assumptions invite renewed critical scrutiny—especially in a comparative framework—and a re-consideration of the biblical directives both cultures were grappling with.  

This workshop brings together expertise from the early, central, and late Middle Ages (respectively, Conrad Leyser, Neta Bodner, and Alice Raw), in conversation with Laura Quick’s expertise in the Hebrew Bible. Participants are invited to read with us to question how the body was treated, even used, as a vehicle for “correct” piety in ways that both differ and intersect across the Middle Ages. 

Spaces are limited to 30 participants; please sign up here: https://forms.gle/n6nvcCC4Us9C7R398

CFP: Adapting Violence in/from Classic Texts

A 2-day online workshop to be held 24–25 March 2022, organised by Amy Brown (University of Bern) and Lucy Fleming (University of Oxford). This interdisciplinary event brings together specialists in literature, retelling, and feminist practice to consider how adaptations address various forms of violence in and from their canonical source-texts. Sources and adaptations examined may be in any language, though the workshop will be conducted primarily in English. Please submit proposals for 20-minute conference papers and/or text workshops online or via adaptingviolence@gmail.com. The deadline for submissions is 15 December 2021; we welcome papers from faculty members as well as postgraduates and early-career researchers. The workshop is supported by the University of Bern Fund for Promotion of Young Researchers. Attendance is free.

Plenary Sessions:

  • Urvashi Chakravarty (University of Toronto), Keynote Speaker
  • Maria Sachiko Cecire (Bard College), Plenary Respondent
  • Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni (University of Houston), Author Talk
  • Round Table on violence in adaptations (TBA)

Proposal Portal:

Due by 15 Dec 2021. For proposals we ask for a title, a 200 word abstract, and for ‘Text explorations’ an excerpt or description of the media you’ll share. Please submit online through our proposal portal – but if you have any problems, email us ( adaptingviolence@gmail.com ). Do note that the responses cannot be saved to return to later – you’ll want to draft your abstract somewhere else and paste it in.

Rationale:

Jyotika Virdi (2006) described the feminist creator seeking to represent rape in film as caught between a ‘rock and a hard place’’—that is, between the ethical call to represent oppressive reality, and the risk that representing violence may perpetuate harm. Similar concerns underlie the representation—in film, literary retellings, and other forms of adaptation—of racial violence, homophobia and transpohbia, and graphic physical violence, all of which are common in works held in high esteem for their literary and/or cultural value. Violence in these ‘classic’ works thus becomes a flashpoint for social, political, and creative tensions. In response, adaptations may reify violence in these texts, or critique it; they may represent violence in the name of fidelity, or seek to reclaim the text. Both adaptors and scholars must grapple with difficult questions: When is violence in adaptation important or useful? When is it negligent or even harmful? What uses does violence serve when adapting culturally prestigious texts, and how is these texts’ very prestige linked to the violence they contain?  

This two-day, online workshop will bring together specialists in the contemporary adaptation of ‘classic texts’ and adaptation as a premodern cultural practice to consider what concerns shape the reception and re-visioning of violence. We will explore the stakes involved in adaptation, and the uses and abuses of violence in adapting texts of high cultural value.  

We define ‘violence’ broadly, including both physical violence and social oppressions, and are interested in considering adaptation strategies across and in reaction to different axes of power, including but not limited to race, gender, and sexuality. In this workshop we seek to bring together scholars working on adaptations (any period) of ‘high status cultural texts’, where the source texts predate 1865. Those texts religious, mythological, artistic and historical source-texts as well as literary forms, and adaptations may be in widely varying media. These source-texts need not derive from any particular language, region, or literary tradition; rather, we aim to feature studies from a wide range of cultural contexts and time periods, to approach our central questions from many varied perspectives. In asking what it means to (re-)write violence, potential papers could address:  

  • Case studies grappling with the ethics of rewritten violence; 
  • Applying a lens of feminist theory, queer studies, violence studies, trauma studies or other interdisciplinary modes to ‘classic’ texts; 
  • Retellings or adaptations that challenge contemporary/contemporaneous ideas of violence; 
  • Retellings for particular or unusual audiences or readerships;  
  • The canonization of works containing violence;  
  • How adaptations and retellings relate to ‘real-world’ violence; 
  • The act of adaptation as a form of violence; 
  • Rewritings of violence that are radical, liberating, and even empowering acts. 

Workshop Format:

This workshop will be entirely online, with both synchronous and asynchronous participation options possible. Given the nature of global online conferences we anticipate that many participants will alternate between synchronous and asynchronous participation depending on their location, work and/or family commitments, accessibility needs, and other considerations. Some material will be uploaded and professionally captioned in advance; plenary sessions will be recorded, professionally captioned, and uploaded after the fact. Still other sessions will be unrecorded.

Further Information:

For full details, please visit the workshop website.

MedievalWiki: Training Workshop and Social Editing Session

Fri, October 29, 2021

1:30 PM – 3:30 PM British Summer Time

Online: via Zoom
FREE booking required https://www.eventbrite.com/e/medievalwiki-meet-up-tickets-182576600527

This workshop is for brand new and experienced Wikipedia editors who are interested in improving Wikipedia according to the aims of MedievalWiki (on which, see below). Lucy Moore (York) and Fran Allfrey (KCL) will be hosting.

We will gather on Zoom and introduce newcomers to the MedievalWiki project and how to get started. This will be a relaxed and informal workshop, designed to build the confidence of new and new-ish editors and to provide a social space for more experienced editors.

Everyone is welcome! Medievalists and non-medievalists, researchers, and students. If you can’t make the whole two hours, feel free to drop in just for the first or the second hour (let us know when you book when you plan to stop by).

What is MedievalWiki?

MedievalWiki is a project to improve the quality of medieval articles on Wikipedia (and related projects including Wikimedia and Wikidata). The project is specifically dedicated to making and editing articles with citations to medieval scholars whose work is indebted to or develops feminist, queer, and critical race studies methods and theories. Making and editing biographical pages for Black medievalists and medievalists of colour, women and non-binary and queer medieval scholars, and artists whose work remakes the medieval is firmly within the MedievalWiki remit.

You can read more about the MedievalWiki project here https://medievalwomenwiki.wordpress.com/

Please send any questions to Dr Fran Allfrey francesca.allfrey@kcl.ac.uk

Workshop on the Murbach Hymns and MS. Junius 25

When?        17th/18th February 2022 (week 5, HT)

What?         In this workshop, the fascinating Murbach hymns – a Latin hymnal with Old High German interlinear glosses from the 8th/9th century – and their manuscript (Oxford, Bodleian Library MS. Junius 25) will be carefully examined regarding their translation technique, use and function, cultural background and transmission. Expect two days full of presentations and discussions, a consultation of this and other manuscripts and a live recitation of the hymns.

Updates and official registration on this page!

Convenor: Luise Morawetz (luise.morawetz@mod-langs.ox.ac.uk)

Image: fol. 122v, Oxford, Bodleian Library MS. Junius 25

Workshop: Oxford Medieval Commentary Network

Saturday, 9 October 2021, Christ Church, Oxford

Sign-ups for the workshop are now open. Sign-up closes 15 July 2021.

Sign-up form

The first workshop and initial meeting of the Medieval Commentary Network will take place at Christ Church, Oxford, on 9 October 2021, from 9am – 5pm. A buffet lunch will be provided. The workshop is free of charge for all participants.
This will take place as an in-person workshop (unless government regulations change). Unfortunately we are unable to live-stream the event, but we are hoping to make recordings of some talks available online after the event (subject to speaker approval).

Speakers include Alastair Minnis, Andrew Kraebel, Edit Lukacs, Audrey Southgate, Elizabeth Doherty, Malena Ratzke, Zachary Guiliano, Bond West, Rachel Cresswell, and others. The full conference programme will be available at https://medievalcommentary.network/ by the end of July.

We recognise that the current situation brings with it a great deal of uncertainty regarding travel; if you find you are no longer able to attend, please let us know as soon as possible.

Please email medievalcommentarynetwork@gmail.com with any questions and for further information.

CALL FOR PAPERS (archived version; CfP now closed)

Manuscripts Live: Singing from Medieval Sources in the Bodleian Library

Building on the success of Gregorian chant workshops  with manuscripts from the Bodleian Library (Singing Together, Apart 1  and Singing Together, Apart 2 ), a group of Oxford medievalists are offering insights into working with manuscripts during lockdown. Meet some of the manuscripts from the Abbey of Medingen, recently digitized through the Polonsky German project, and sing along to chants from the Easter period.  A special focus was on the ‘Exsultet’ which attracted some of the most colourful illumination of the manuscripts as well as detailed devotional instructions in Latin and Low German on how to sing it both out aloud and “on the harp strings of the soul”. Read more on Savouring the Exultet at Medingen in this blog post by Innocent Smith OP for the Polonsky German manuscript digitisation project.

Andrew Dunning, R.W. Hunt Curator of Medieval Manuscripts, showed the Medingen manuscripts at the Bodleian Library live via visualiser from the Weston Library; Zachary Guiliano, Chaplain of St Edmund Hall, Henrike Lähnemann, Professor of Medieval German Literature and Linguistics, and Nick Swarbrick, Gregorian chant instructor, and Connor Wood, Organ Scholar at St Edmund Hall, formed a Schola in the Crypt of St-Peter-in-the-East, the library of St Edmund Hall, and commented on the manuscripts, the music, and their theological significance. Two graduate students working on the Easter prayer books, Carolin Gluchowski and Marlene Schilling, pointed out some of the special nuntastic features of the manuscripts.

This was part of the IMC Leeds Fringe Events but open to all manuscript and music enthusiasts! Music downloads for the event: Nunc dimittis (audience sings the ‘repetitio’ Lumen ad revelacionem gencium as congregational responses); Exultet (audience sings the congregational responses); Victime paschali laudes (audience sings the ‘Christ ist erstanden’ as congregational response and the question of the disciples Dic nobis Maria…)

Exultet iam angelica turba celorum…

Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Lat. liturg. f. 4, fol. 20r – view the full manuscript on the Polonsky German website hab.bodleian.ox.ac.uk

Website Medingen Manuscripts

Recording of the first Polonsky German Workshop “Singing Apart, Together”.

Instruction for the Medingen Provost when during the ‘Exsultet’ to put the incense into the Easter candle, Bodleian Library MS. Lat. liturg. e. 18, fol. 36v