Session Title

Method and the Middle English Text (A Roundtable)

Sponsoring Organization(s)

Interdisciplinary Graduate Medieval Colloquium, Univ. of Virginia

Organizer Name

Zachary E. Stone

Organizer Affiliation

Univ. of Virginia

Presider Name

Zachary E. Stone

Paper Title 1

Discussant

Presenter 1 Name

Emily Steiner

Presenter 1 Affiliation

Univ. of Pennsylvania

Paper Title 2

Discussant

Presenter 2 Name

Kellie Robertson

Presenter 2 Affiliation

Univ. of Maryland

Paper Title 3

Discussant

Presenter 3 Name

Daniel Davies

Presenter 3 Affiliation

Univ. of Pennsylvania

Paper Title 4

Discussant

Presenter 4 Name

Michelle Ripplinger

Presenter 4 Affiliation

Univ. of California-Berkeley

Paper Title 5

Discussant

Presenter 5 Name

Evan Cheney

Presenter 5 Affiliation

Univ. of Virginia

Start Date

12-5-2016 1:30 PM

Session Location

Valley I Hadley 102

Description

From D. W. Robertson and E. T. Donaldson through the work of Lee Patterson and Carolyn Dinshaw as part of a wider debate about historicism and psychoanalysis, Middle English studies is a field that has long been characterized by methodological debate. The present moment is no different. On the one hand there are those who work extensively with older methodologies such as philology, codicology, paleography, biography, and forms of historicism, materialist and other. On the other hand, there are those who emphasize newer methodologies such as ecocriticism, object-oriented ontology, new materialism, affect studies, new formalism, disability studies, queer theory, digital humanities, etc. Recent publications and interventions by scholars like Andrew Cole and D. Vance Smith, for the older methodologies, and Jeffrey Jerome Cohen and Eileen Joy, for the new methodologies, have clearly stated the goals and methods of the respective parties. Missing from these discussions, however, is a sense of how these different methods and intellectual investments can operate together as a scholarly praxis. How, for instance, can one combine an interest in codicology with an interest in ecocriticism, biographical readings with affect studies, materialist historicism with the new materialisms, philology with new formalism? The goal of this roundtable is not to correct or affirm any specific view or theoretical model. Rather, we wish to experiment with what might result from a scholarly disposition of both/and rather than either/or. We are interested in what makes Middle English texts so profoundly hospitable to such an array of methodological approaches. This discussion will extend conversations begun at a conference on the same topic hosted by the University of Virginia 8-9 April 2016.

Zachary Stone

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May 12th, 1:30 PM

Method and the Middle English Text (A Roundtable)

Valley I Hadley 102

From D. W. Robertson and E. T. Donaldson through the work of Lee Patterson and Carolyn Dinshaw as part of a wider debate about historicism and psychoanalysis, Middle English studies is a field that has long been characterized by methodological debate. The present moment is no different. On the one hand there are those who work extensively with older methodologies such as philology, codicology, paleography, biography, and forms of historicism, materialist and other. On the other hand, there are those who emphasize newer methodologies such as ecocriticism, object-oriented ontology, new materialism, affect studies, new formalism, disability studies, queer theory, digital humanities, etc. Recent publications and interventions by scholars like Andrew Cole and D. Vance Smith, for the older methodologies, and Jeffrey Jerome Cohen and Eileen Joy, for the new methodologies, have clearly stated the goals and methods of the respective parties. Missing from these discussions, however, is a sense of how these different methods and intellectual investments can operate together as a scholarly praxis. How, for instance, can one combine an interest in codicology with an interest in ecocriticism, biographical readings with affect studies, materialist historicism with the new materialisms, philology with new formalism? The goal of this roundtable is not to correct or affirm any specific view or theoretical model. Rather, we wish to experiment with what might result from a scholarly disposition of both/and rather than either/or. We are interested in what makes Middle English texts so profoundly hospitable to such an array of methodological approaches. This discussion will extend conversations begun at a conference on the same topic hosted by the University of Virginia 8-9 April 2016.

Zachary Stone