Session Title

Anglo-Saxon Childhood, Adolescence, and Education

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Georg-August-Univ. Göttingen

Organizer Name

Andreas Lemke, Winfried Rudolf

Organizer Affiliation

Georg-August-Univ. Göttingen, Georg-August-Univ. Göttingen

Presider Name

Winfried Rudolf

Paper Title 1

Laments for the Living: Dying Parents and Surviving Children in Anglo-Saxon Literature

Presenter 1 Name

Stacy S. Klein

Presenter 1 Affiliation

Rutgers Univ.

Paper Title 2

Naming the Anglo-Saxon Child: Ethnicity, Semantics, and Cultural Change

Presenter 2 Name

Leonard Neidorf

Presenter 2 Affiliation

Harvard Univ.

Paper Title 3

"Sharper than a Serpent’s Tooth”: Parent-Child Litigation in Later Anglo-Saxon England

Presenter 3 Name

Andrew Rabin

Presenter 3 Affiliation

Univ. of Louisville

Start Date

8-5-2014 1:30 PM

Session Location

Bernhard 158

Description

"Medieval art until about the twelfth century did not know childhood or did not attempt to portray it." This statement by Phillipe Ariès (1962) has dominated scholarship on medieval infancy and adolescence for some decades, finding some counteraction only in recent years, and with restriction to certain areas of medieval Europe. While archeaological evidence has been surveyed in some detail (e.g. Crawford, 1999), this session aims at foregrounding the role of children and teenagers in Anglo-Saxon literature, and especially those texts which are not necessarily known as straightforwardly canonical. We attempt to present new evidence which demonstrates as much Anglo-Saxon interest in the creation and development of human life in its early stages as is usually indentified in notions of transience and death in Old English literature. The aim is to reach a more refined understanding of the triad of infantia – pueritia – adolescentia, concepts which were not unequivocally understood by medieval authors and scholars themselves. Uniting historical, legal, liturgical and educational writings as well as palaeographical evidence, this session hopes to open up a new debate on the social history of Anglo-Saxon children, their literary roles, their vulnerability and protection, liability and education.

Andreas Lemke, Winfried Rudolf

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May 8th, 1:30 PM

Anglo-Saxon Childhood, Adolescence, and Education

Bernhard 158

"Medieval art until about the twelfth century did not know childhood or did not attempt to portray it." This statement by Phillipe Ariès (1962) has dominated scholarship on medieval infancy and adolescence for some decades, finding some counteraction only in recent years, and with restriction to certain areas of medieval Europe. While archeaological evidence has been surveyed in some detail (e.g. Crawford, 1999), this session aims at foregrounding the role of children and teenagers in Anglo-Saxon literature, and especially those texts which are not necessarily known as straightforwardly canonical. We attempt to present new evidence which demonstrates as much Anglo-Saxon interest in the creation and development of human life in its early stages as is usually indentified in notions of transience and death in Old English literature. The aim is to reach a more refined understanding of the triad of infantia – pueritia – adolescentia, concepts which were not unequivocally understood by medieval authors and scholars themselves. Uniting historical, legal, liturgical and educational writings as well as palaeographical evidence, this session hopes to open up a new debate on the social history of Anglo-Saxon children, their literary roles, their vulnerability and protection, liability and education.

Andreas Lemke, Winfried Rudolf