CFP: ‘Behold a Pale Horse’: Eschatology of the Medieval East and West, ICMS 2021, deadline 15 September 2020

Session Hosts: Sarah Mathiesen (Florida State University) and Britt Boler Hunter (Florida State University)

The COVID-19 pandemic has provoked a revival of Apocalyptic fears. Widespread anxiety in response to the pandemic leads us to ponder how medieval people conflated fears of disease with fears of the End Times. What is the dynamic between medieval diseases and the End? What did individual religious, political, or social communities see as signs of the Apocalypse?


Our aim is to cultivate a conversation about eschatology in the medieval East and West. This is an interdisciplinary, global, and cross-chronological panel that welcomes papers addressing the interaction of disease and eschatological belief in the medieval world. We define the topic of “disease” broadly, from physical illness and mental health to social, religious, or political maladies.
We encourage papers from scholars of all disciplines, particularly PhD students and ECRs.
Suggested topics include but are not limited to:

  • Medieval eschatological theology and traditions
  • Plague, illness, and disease as indication of End Times
  • Social or cultural ailments as Signs of the Times
  • Religious eschatological sects or heresies
  • Practical or how-to material relating to personal or religious eschatology
  • Art and imagery of death, disease, and the Apocalypse
  • Anxiety and mental health in the Middle Ages
  • Psychology of medieval illness and/or eschatology
  • Medieval culture surrounding death

Submissions: Please submit through the ICMS portal (wmich.edu/medievalcongresss/submissions), session ID: 1344S

Deadline: September 15, 2020

Published by Roisin Astell

Roisin Astell received a First Class Honours in History of Art at the University of York (2014), under the supervision of Dr Emanuele Lugli. After spending a year learning French in Paris, Roisin then completed an MSt. in Medieval Studies at the University of Oxford (2016), where she was supervised by Professor Gervase Rosser and Professor Martin Kauffmann. In 2017, Roisin was awarded a CHASE AHRC studentship as a doctoral candidate at the University of Kent’s Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, under the supervision of Dr Emily Guerry.

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