CFP: Games and Visual Culture in the Middle Ages

g24.025vContributions are sought for an interdisciplinary collection of essays to be edited by Elizabeth Lapina and Vanina Kopp. The volume will include articles dedicated to the study of representations of the act of playing games of the type that required no or little physical exertion, as well as of material artifacts related to games. It will cover a broad geographical and chronological range (from the Iberian Peninsula to the Middle East, from the 5th through the 15th centuries) as well as a variety of media and supports (manuscript illuminations,  mural paintings, sculpture, ivories, misericords, altarpieces, etc.).

The articles will display a wide spectrum of approaches to medieval games as reflected in visual and material culture: articles written by art historians, historians, scholars of literature and archaeologists are equally welcome. Gaming was a past-time that transcended many boundaries: women and men, the learned and the illiterate, children and adults, the clergy and the laity, the city and the court, the rich and the poor, Christians and non-Christians played games. The volume will address the questions of who played which games, when, where and why, as well as the means and ways of their representation. It will inquire to what extent games challenged social divisions and to what extent they reinforced them, and will attempt to understand the rules of visualizing this. It will also relate games to other activities, especially love/sex, violence, competition and leisure.

If you are interested in contributing to the volume, please send an abstract (200-300 words) to Elizabeth Lapina (lapina and Vanina Kopp (vkopp      before January 1st, 2017. Essays, of between 6,000 and 8,000 words, including notes, in     English, will be due before  January 1st, 2018.

Photo credit: New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, MS G.24, f. 25v (detail).

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