Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Medieval Material Matters

This one-day interdisciplinary research day aims to cultivate research links between medievalist postgraduate communities, and the conference will be a free public event. The theme of the event – Medieval Material Matters – has been chosen as a means of focusing discussion. A plenary lecture by an international established academic working on questions of materiality, will be delivered in the morning. In order to maximise opportunities for exploratory conversation following the plenary, there will be 2 sessions for short presentations (10-15 minutes) based on pre-circulated papers in the morning and afternoon, followed by a session discussing a piece of secondary reading in seminar format. The final part of the day will be used to think about future collaboration.

The research day will seek to address the following questions:

  • How might ‘materiality’ be understood – and critiqued – in medieval contexts? How does textual materiality fit into this understanding? What are the role of objects (material or otherwise) within this context?
  • What perspectives can research in Medieval Studies offer on discussions/theorisations of materiality in other periods?
  • How might the digital environment in which medieval research increasingly takes place affect our thinking about the materiality of cultural artefacts, objects, and spaces?

This event is running as part of the prestigious and well-established Medieval Seminar Series at the University of Warwick.


9:30-10:00 Registration

10:00-11:30 Plenary lecture by Catherine Brown

11:30-12:00 Coffee break

12:00-13:00 1st Paper Panel Manuscripts and their material worlds
Louise Campion, University of Warwick
The Materiality of the Heart in Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS Misc. 330, and London, British Library, MS Additional 37049
Jane Sinnett-Smith, University of Warwick
Second-hand sanctity: contact relics and sacred materiality in Gautier de Coinci’s Miracles de Nostre Dame

13:00-14:00 Lunch break (lunch included)

14:00-15:30 2nd Paper Panel Materialities of space and place

Matt Lampitt, King’s College, London
Material Politics: Nonhuman Agency in Texts from the Twelfth-Century Welsh Border
Luís Ferro, University of Porto
Sacred Places: when were the 'Cubas' from the Kûra of Beja constructed?
Liam Lewis, University of Warwick
Stones of the Heart: Love, Sex, and Mineral Transformation in Philippe de Thaon's Bestiaire and Ancrene Wisse

15:30-16:00 Coffee break

16:00-17:30 Materiality workshop (group discussion of set reading, tbc)

17:30-18:30 Wine reception

18:30- Restaurant meal (pay-as-you-go)



Medievalist keynote Speaker: Professor Catherine Brown, University of Michigan.

Supported by the Humanities Research Centre (Warwick), the Department of French Studies at Warwick, and the Society for French Studies.


Wolfson Research Exchange

University of Warwick Library,
Gibbet Hill Road,
CV4 7AL,
United Kingdom