Session Title

The Life of "I": Biography, Autobiography, and the Self in the Middle Ages

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Program in Medieval Studies, Princeton Univ.

Organizer Name

Sara S. Poor

Organizer Affiliation

Princeton Univ.

Presider Name

Sara S. Poor

Paper Title 1

"Restoring to Me Your Brother's Beauty": Interiority as Hebraica Veritas in Abelard's Planctus

Presenter 1 Name

Ruth Nisse

Presenter 1 Affiliation

Wesleyan Univ.

Paper Title 2

Confessing Nothing: Marguerite Porete's Middle English "I" without "You"

Presenter 2 Name

Amy Conwell

Presenter 2 Affiliation

Univ. of Toronto

Paper Title 3

Doubling and the Creation of the Female Devotional Self in Late Medieval England

Presenter 3 Name

Elise Wang

Presenter 3 Affiliation

Princeton Univ.

Start Date

14-5-2016 10:00 AM

Session Location

Schneider 1345

Description

From St. Augustine’s profound Confessiones to Margery Kempe’s memorable Boke, it’s resoundingly clear that people in the Middle Ages were a bundle of contradictions. Even so, they understood the importance of self-expression and knew that personal identity is inextricable from aesthetic conventions. New work in the discipline of medieval studies is uncovering exactly what these conventions were, rewriting the history of the self to show that the medieval “I” is the locus of personal and historical dynamics, as well as the occasion for poetic and musical effects. Medieval selves, whether fashioned in texts or monuments, are surprising and even unruly entities and thus demand our attention, not only for what they teach us about medieval people but for what they tell us about ourselves.

Sara S. Poor

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May 14th, 10:00 AM

The Life of "I": Biography, Autobiography, and the Self in the Middle Ages

Schneider 1345

From St. Augustine’s profound Confessiones to Margery Kempe’s memorable Boke, it’s resoundingly clear that people in the Middle Ages were a bundle of contradictions. Even so, they understood the importance of self-expression and knew that personal identity is inextricable from aesthetic conventions. New work in the discipline of medieval studies is uncovering exactly what these conventions were, rewriting the history of the self to show that the medieval “I” is the locus of personal and historical dynamics, as well as the occasion for poetic and musical effects. Medieval selves, whether fashioned in texts or monuments, are surprising and even unruly entities and thus demand our attention, not only for what they teach us about medieval people but for what they tell us about ourselves.

Sara S. Poor