So many events, so many ways to join the MSP community!
Shot of the first MSP Reading Group of 2020-2021. Don’t miss out on the fun and plan to join us next time!
Friday, April 9, 2021 from 5-6:15 pm on Zoom: Please join us for three fascinating virtual presentations from UVA faculty members followed by questions and conversation. Professors Bruce Holsinger, Amanda Phillips, and Nizar Hermes will discuss their recent research projects and interests, ranging from the global history of parchment to the interdisciplinary study of textiles as both objects and sources for writing other kinds of histories. Register for this event here.
Wednesday, April 21, 2021 from 6-7 pm on Zoom: Helen Young, Lecturer in Writing and Literature at Deakin University, will speak on the functions and significance of the medieval in modern constructions of whiteness. This talk follows a special appearance from Professor Young at MSP Film Club (see below), where she will lead a discussion on the portrayal of the medieval in the popular video game Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Register here.
Friday, April 30, 2021 from 3-4 pm on Zoom: Geraldine Heng, Perceval Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Middle Eastern Studies, and Women’s Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, will give a talk on teaching early global literatures and the decentering of Europe-based and western-based curricula. Register here.
For additional talks on medieval matters this semester, check out the series sponsored by the Islamic Studies Colloquium!
MSP Film Club
The following films will be made available through UVA library for your viewing pleasure. Join us for lively post-viewing discussion about the film. Among the many subjects the group will pursue is the central question of how modern cinema engages with and uses medieval stories. With the exception of a special event with Professor Helen Young on April 19, 2021, discussions will be held on Thursdays on Zoom. If you would like to join the discussion, please register here. All are welcome – the medieval enthusiast, the film critic, the history buff and the generally curious – and invite a friend!
Thursday, April 19, 2021, 6-7 pm, on Zoom: Please join special guest Professor Helen Young, Lecturer in Writing and Literature at Deakin University, for a discussion of representations of the medieval in the popular video game Assassin’s Creed Valhalla. Register for the event and for film access here.
Thursday, April 22, 2021, 6:30-7:30 pm on Zoom: Join Professor Gregory Hays and Julie Wilson to discuss the film The Name of the Rose (1986), a mystery and historical drama directed by Jean-Jacques Annaud. The film follows Franciscan Friar William of Baskerville (Sean Connery), who is called on to solve a deadly mystery in a medieval abbey. Register for the event and for film access here.
Friday, February 26, 2021 at 2 pm on Zoom: Please join Professor Peter Baker of the UVA Department of English for a Medieval Paleography Workshop. In this engaging virtual workshop, participants will learn the ins and outs of reading and transcribing medieval handwriting. Register here.
[The image to the left is from Morgan Library Manuscript M.99, folio 7r.]
Thursday, February 25, 2021, 6:30-7:30 pm on Zoom: Join Dr. Casey Ireland to discuss The Seventh Seal (1957), a Swedish historical fantasy film directed by Ingmar Bergman. Set in Sweden during the Black Death, the film follows the journey of a medieval knight who plays chess with a personification of Death. Register for the event and for film access here.
Thursday, March 11, 2021, 6:30-7:30 pm on Zoom: Join Professor Amy Ogden and Katherine Churchill to discuss The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938), directed by Michael Curtiz and William Keighley. The film follows Robin Hood, Maid Marion and a band of outlaws as they outwit Prince John in a technicolor retelling of the classic tale. Register for the event and for film access here.
Friday, March 19, 2021 on Zoom: Professor Nahir Otaño Gracia, Assistant Professor of English at the University of New Mexico, will lead a pedagogy workshop that focuses on practical ways medievalists and non-medievalists alike can employ anti-racist work in the classroom and in academia, and shift institutional spaces using community building and life-affirming strategies.
Friday, March 26, 2021 on Zoom: Please join us for a second pedagogy workshop focused on building and editing syllabi led by Professor Nahir Otaño Gracia of the University of New Mexico. Bring a syllabus, or an idea for a syllabus, that you would like to workshop based on the principles of inclusion and anti-racism. Students and scholars of all levels welcome! Register for this event here.
Thursday, April 1, 2021, 6-7 PM pm on Zoom: Join graduate students Courtney Watts and Alexandra Kennedy in a discussion of Throne of Blood (1957), a Japanese historical drama co-written and directed by Akira Kurosawa. The film’s plot follows that of William Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, but is set in feudal Japan and includes stylistic elements drawn from Noh drama. Register for the event and for film access here.
November 19, 2020, 2-3:30 pm: Naomi Standon, Professor of Medieval History, University of Birmingham will speak on “Taking China out of Premodern Global History: Bodies, Threads and Fabrics.” Talk co-hosted by East Asia Center and the Medieval Studies Program.
Friday, Oct. 23, 2020, 4-5 pm: Join Courtney Watts (PhD English) and Adrianna Streifer (Assistant Director, CTE) for a discussion of anti-racist pedagogy in medievalism via Zoom. The fraught history of racism in medievalism and racist appropriations of the Middle Ages can lead to particular challenges navigating race in the classroom for medievalists. In this workshop, we will discuss an introductory article on anti-racist pedagogy and discuss field-specific challenges as well as methods for confronting overt and covert racism in the classroom. For details on zoom address, contact Courtney Watts (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Thursday, November 12, 2020, 5:30-6:30 on Zoom: Join Professor McGrady, Ms. Courtney Watts, and Dr. Casey Ireland to discuss Highlander (1986), a fantasy action adventure that follows the immortal life of a swordsman of the Scottish highlands who will compete for prize money in modern day New York. His premodern past will be revisited through a series of flashbacks. Access to movie available through Virgo.
October 15, 2020, 4pm on Zoom: Please join a co-sponsored session of the MSP Reading Group with the UVA Early Modern Workshop that will speak to the author Nükhet Varlik of Rutgers University about her book, Plague and Empire in the Early Modern Mediterranean World: The Ottoman Experience, 1347-1600 (Cambridge UP 2015). A limited number of copies of the book are available for those interested in joining the discussion, as is a .pdf of the Introduction. Please contact the Director of Medieval Studies, Deborah McGrady (dlm4z), for text copies and for details to join the discussion. This event is possible thanks to the support of New Literary History
Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020, 5:30 – 6:30 on Zoom: Join Professor McGrady (Director) and Professor Al-Rahim (Religious Studies) to discuss the 1963 film Saladin the Victorious, directed by the Cannes award-winning Egyptian director, Youssef Chahine. The movie provides an uncommon view of the Third Crusade that will surely spark a lively conversation. Please contact Prof. McGrady (email@example.com) for link to streamed film.
Thursday, October 22, 2020, 5:30 – 6:30 on Zoom: Join Prof. McGrady and Prof. Ogden (French) to discuss the 2001 A Knight’s Tale, a delicious romcom that breaks all the rules of “historical” movies. With a 1970s rock soundtrack and a peasant who pretends to be a knight, this film will not only amuse but lead you to rethink medieval chivalry. Praise equals critique of this film – and your thoughts? Join us to share your views. Available through UVA library on Swank. See here.
Thursday, Oct. 1., 2020, 5:30-6:30 on Zoom: Join Professor McGrady (Director of MSP) and Ms. Kathryn Churchill (PhD English) to discuss one of the more recent cinematic treatments of Joan of Arc. Directed by Luc Besson and with stunning performances by Milla Jovovich (Joan) and John Malcovich (Charles VII), this rendition is considered to be one of the most violent accounts of Joan’s life. Bring your thoughts and questions to the discussion (and popcorn!). Please contact Prof. McGrady (firstname.lastname@example.org) for link to streamed film.
Sept. 17, 2020, 4-5pm on Zoom: Please join MSP for an afternoon Q&A with author Cord J. Whitaker of Wellesly College who will discuss with us his book, Black Metaphors: How Racism Emerged from Medieval Race-Thinking (UPenn 2019). A limited number of copies of the book are available for those interested in joining the discussion, as is a .pdf of the Introduction. Please contact the Director of Medieval Studies, Deborah McGrady (dlm4z), for text copies and for details to join the discussion. This event is possible thanks to the support of New Literary History and the Department of English.
Sept 24, 2020, 5pm: Prof. Whitaker will deliver the Rushton Lecture in the Department of English via Zoom.