CFP: The Virgin and the City: Urban Marian Spaces in Late Medieval Europe (Kalamazoo 2022, deadline 1 September 2021)

How was the Mother of God accommodated and exhibited in civic space?

This session wishes to analyze the Marian presence in Late Medieval European cities. The scholarly importance of the session lies in understanding how the Virgin became a part of urban landscapes and how the political and civic powers enhanced religious place‐making practices. What does Marian images’ location reveal about the relationship between devotion and public places? Why did the Virgin become the guarantor of civic unity? And finally, how did Mary personify the “urban ideology”?

On a methodological level, the session will encourage an interdisciplinary socio-spatial approach. Topography, urbanism, and art will be examined in relation with Marian devotion to understand the semantization of the civic space. The analysis of case studies will aim not only to highlight specific aspects and general phenomena in Late Medieval Europe, but also to define key concepts, identities, and devotional practices in urban development processes.

Scholars are invited to submit a 300-word abstract, excluding references. Proposals should also include name, affiliation, email address, the title of the presentation, 6 keywords, a selective bibliography, and a short CV. Please send the documents to by September 1, 2021.


Published by ameliahyde

Amelia Roché Hyde holds an MA from The Courtauld Institute of Art, where she studied cross-cultural artistic traditions of medieval Spain, taking an in-depth look at the context and role of Spanish ivories within sacred spaces. Her favorite medieval art objects are ones that are meant to be handled and touched, and she has researched ivories, textiles, and illuminated manuscripts at The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The British Museum. Amelia is the Research Assistant at The Met Cloisters.

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