Conference 2017

The 44th Annual New England Medieval Conference will take place at MIT in Cambridge, MA on Saturday, October 7, 2017. The conference theme is Charlemagne’s Ghost: Legacies, Leftovers, and Legends of the Carolingian Empire. The keynote speaker will be Simon MacLean of the University of St. Andrews, speaking on “What Was Post-Carolingian about Post-Carolingian Europe?”

It is well known that the Frankish emperor Charlemagne (768-814) and his dynasty – the Carolingians – played an important role in the formation of Europe. Yet scholars still debate the long-term consequences of the collapse of the Carolingian empire in 888 and the diverse ways in which Charlemagne’s family shaped subsequent medieval civilization. This conference invites medievalists of all disciplines and specializations to investigate the legacies, leftovers, and legends of the Carolingian empire in the central and later Middle Ages. We welcome papers that consider a wide array of Carolingian legacies in the realms of kingship and political culture, literature and art, manuscripts and material artifacts, the Church and monasticism, as well as Europe’s relations with the wider world. We urge participants to reflect on the ways in which later medieval rulers, writers, artists, and communities remembered Charlemagne and the Frankish empire and adapted Carolingian inheritances to fit new circumstances. In short, this conference will explore the ways in which Charlemagne’s ghost haunted the medieval world.

The deadline for submission of abstracts has now passed. Conference contact: Eric Goldberg (egoldber@mit.edu).

Click here for information on registration, lodging, directions, parking, and conference schedule.