Power and Identity:

The Reading of History in High Medieval Europe

28th-30th June 2017, Aberystwyth

Chronicles, saints’ lives, and other reconstructions of the past constitute our most important and challenging set of sources for the intellectual, social, and political history of high Medieval Europe (c. 900 – c. 1300). They offer unique insights into political culture, forms of memory, networks of communication, origin myths, and the role of the past in shaping identities. Scholarly interest has moved away from examining these texts as repositories of facts towards an appreciation instead of their value as products of varied and diverse cultural, intellectual, and textual traditions. This international workshop for postgraduates and early career scholars  will focus on the following areas:

·      The use of the past as an expression of identity

·      The representation and interpretation of political power through reconstructions of the past

·      The influence of classical and early medieval intellectual, literary, and rhetorical traditions

·      The place of these renditions within wider social contexts (including networks of patronage, reception, communication, and information)

The workshop includes papers from participants from a truly international scholarly community including the UK, the US, Norway, Spain, Italy, France, Belgium, Poland, the Netherlands, Austria, and Germany. A draft programme can be found here: 

Power and Identity – final programme

Keynote lectures will be given by:

Martin Aurell (Poitiers) 

Piotr S. Gorecki (Riverside/CA)

Robert Ireland (Aberystwyth)

Felicitas Schmieder (Hagen)

Moderators include: Rhun Emlyn (Aberystwyth), Thomas Foerster (Cambridge), Erik Niblaeus (Durham),  Charlie Rozier (Swansea), Phillipp Schofield (Aberystwyth), and Björn Weiler (Aberystwyth). 


Deadline for attendance registration: 20th May 2017. Standard registration fee: £25.00, postgraduates: £15.00 (includes refreshments).

Registration for the workshop and an option for university budget accommodation can be found here (limited availability – £25.00 a night).

Any questions email 

The registration fee includes tea and coffee only. Participants will need to make their own arrangements with regard to travel and accommodation (though advice and suggestions can be found here):

travel and accommodation advice

This event itself has been made possible thanks to funding from both the Graduate School and the Department of History and Welsh History, Aberystwyth. The registration fee for postgraduate speakers has been waived thanks to funding generously provided by MEDIUM ÆVUM: The Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature. They have also provided six travel bursaries for these speakers.

The workshop takes place under the auspices of the Centre for the Study of Historiography and Historical Culture (Aberystwyth)

Please email any questions or enquiries to the email address above.