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Receptions: Medieval and Early Modern Cultural Appropriations


A conference presented by the Perth Medieval and Renaissance Group, in conjunction with the Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies at the University of Western Australia.


Conference Title:
'Receptions: Medieval and Early Modern Cultural Appropriations'
The conference will explore cultural appropriations in, by and of the medieval and early modern world, through three sub-themes:
1) The appropriation of earlier cultures by the medieval or early modern world; 2) Cultural exchanges and frontier encounters within the medieval and early modern world; and
3) The reception or appropriation of the medieval or early modern by later periods.

17-18 August 2012

St Catherine's College, UWA.

Plenary Speakers:
Professor David Konstan
(Brown University, UWA IAS Professor-at-Large, CHE Advisory Board member)
Professor Jacquline Van Gent
(University of Western Australia, CHE Research Investigator)
Associate Professor Loiuse D'Arcens (The University of Wollongong, CHE Assoicate Investigator)

The programme includes  a range of exciting papers from local, national and international scholars.

Registration is now open
Registration rates, inclusive of GST are:
    •    Full Registration: $150 AUD
    •    PMRG Member or Standard Concession: $130 AUD
    •    Student PMRG Members: $90 AUD
    •    Day Rate: $90 AUD

For more information, including: a draft programme, a list of abstracts, and
to register online,  please visit the:
PMRG conference website

A free public lecture by Associate Professor Louise D'Arcens titled "Reception, Recovery, Re-creation: The Singular Story of the Middle Ages in Australia" will precede the conference on 16 August 2012 at 6:00 PM in the Gentilli Lecture Theatre (Geography Building, 1.31).

"This illustrated talk will explore the varied, surprising, and persistent afterlife of the Middle Ages in Australian culture. As the late eighteenth century was the foundational period of British settlement in the Australian colonies, High Enlightenment ideals have had an indisputable impact on Australian public life. Yet the story is not so simple. A growing recognition of the greater complexity of colonial Australia¹s relationship with the European past has led to a more nuanced account of its distinctive engagement with a cultural legacy stretching back to the medieval period. A picture is now emerging of a colonial culture in which medievalism - the creative modern response to the Middle Ages and adaptation of medieval concepts - has existed as a major aesthetic and cultural presence in Australian literature, architecture, political ceremony, theatre, art, and even sport. This thriving but often unacknowledged subculture, with its preoccupations with either romance, chivalry and folklore, or irrationality, disorder, and Gothic gloom, has been far more formative of settler Australia¹s cultural identity than has been recognized. Looking at examples from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, this talk will explore just some of the large body of medievalism Australia has produced, and will discuss some of the ways we can understand its highly localized interpretations of medieval motifs, narrative forms, legends, and personages."