Tuesday, April 25, 2017

"The Algebra of Atonement"
Valerie Allen, John Jay College, CUNY
Friday, May 5th
Room 9204
CUNY Graduate Center (365 5th Ave, between 34th and 35th)

Persian mathematician al-Khwarizmi’s Algebra (c.830) and St. Anselm’s Cur Deus Homo, (c.1098) have just about nothing in common. The latter was composed some fifty years prior to the earliest translation into Latin of the former, and the two texts address very different topics: calculation of business transactions on the one hand and, on the other, Christian salvation. Yet algebra developed in part out of the need to divide estates according to Islamic law and was motivated by the need to satisfy entitlement and debt. Understood thus, it addresses concerns not dissimilar to the problem Anselm confronts of how to make satisfaction of the debt owed God. In this talk I connect the texts as two methods for achieving equivalence between incommensurables. I consider what models of equality inform both al-Khwarizmi’s algebraic and Anselm’s salvation equations, and what theological implications follow from Anselm's logical method.

Friday, February 24, 2017

End Time(s) in Medieval Performance
Futurity and Absence
Jill Stevenson, Marymount Manhattan College
March 3, 2017
CUNY Graduate Center
365 5th Ave (btw 34th and 35th Streets) 
in the English Studies Conference Room (4406)

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Translating the Laws of Crusader Outremer:
A Collaborative Approach
February 3, 2017
CUNY Graduate Center (365 5th Ave, between 34th and 35th)
English Studies Conference Room 4406
Please join us for a talk by Laura Morreale and Nicholas Paul of Fordham University.

Friday, September 9, 2016

2016-2017 Medieval Club of New York Schedule

2016-2017 Medieval Club of New York Schedule
Unless otherwise indicated, all talks will be at 7:30pm
at the CUNY Graduate Center
365 5th Ave (btw 34th and 35th Streets) 
in the English Studies Conference Room (4406)

Thursday September 15th, at the Morgan Library. Tour of the Hans Memling exhibition, led by curator John Mariari. You may sign up for either the 5:30 or 6pm tours by writing to Sara McDougall,  at smcdougall@jjay.cuny.edu.

Oct. 7: A presentation devoted to the Metropolitan Museum of Art's "Jerusalem" exhibit, by curators Melanie Holcomb and Barbara Boehm 

Dec. 2 Maureen Miller, UC Berkeley, "Writing About Clothing in Late Medieval Rome: Papal Inventories, Connoisseurship, and Power"

Feb. 3 Presentation on the Fordham University digital crusader law project by Laura Morreale and Nicholas Paul 

March 3 Jill Stevenson, Marymount Manhattan College, "Making End Time(s) in Medieval Performance"

May 5 Valerie Allen, John Jay College CUNY, "The Algebra of Atonement."

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Unfortunately Simon Doubleday's talk [described below] is postponed until some time next year.
Regrets and apologies for any inconvenience.

Those too eager to wait until next year can attend Simon's talk at  the Hispanic Society of America on April 9.

"The Wise King's Nightmare
Simon Doubleday, Professor of History, Hofstra University
Friday April 1, 7:30PM [POSTPONED]
365 5th Ave (btw 34th and 35th Streets)
English Studies Conference Room (4406)
Among the Cantigas de Santa María of Alfonso X, el Sabio (1252-84), one song to the Virgin describes a scene in which the king himself experiences a nightmarish vision while taking a siesta in his palace in the city of Seville, recently conquered from its Muslim rulers. The king dreams he sees the Virgin Mary, crying out in the castle chapel. In her arms, she is carrying a small child, and she running desperately to the chapel door, for the chapel is on fire. Alfonso dreams that she calls out to him to rescue her child, even if she must die. This talk will attempt to unpack the meanings of this nightmare, in the context of a tense colonial occupation, asking whether it can be read as having psychological as well as theological significance, and how, more broadly, we might use the Cantigas de Santa María, as evidence for the history of emotions in medieval Spain. Might the Wise King's nightmare even provide a glimpse of a repressed horror of thirteenth-century war, and its impact on civilian populations?