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1. Annual Meeting: Report on Essen (September 2016)
On 9 to 11 September CARMEN held its 2016 meeting in Essen. Prof. Amalie Foeßel and her team (University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany) provided a wonderful atmosphere and an excellent organization. We can now look back on a successful meeting with strong attendance from German universities and research centres, especially at a rich and lively market place session. The meeting also deepened our connection with the Mediävistenverband whose vice president Prof. Wolfram Drews gave us a brief overview of medieval studies in Germany.

CARMEN has always looked towards European funding opportunities but these are increasingly competitive and can be restricted to only certain countries. In order to find alternatives we are looking into funding of international research by national funding agencies such as the Humboldt-Stiftung and the Thyssen-Stiftung, both of which gave presentations at Essen.

The special theme of the meeting, “Futures of the Past” was especially connected to the Essen Graduate School “Precaution, prevision, prediction: managing contingency” (presented by Benjamin Scheller) but was also picked up in several thematic workshops such as “Futures: Preparing for Change” (by Anke Holdenried, Bristol). At the same time, it was presented in the sense of modern societies seeking their legitimization
and thus their future in the medieval past: “Uses of the Past” (by CARMEN project director Simon Forde / Christian Krötzl, Tampere) and “Troubling Europe” (by Felicitas Schmieder, Hagen, and Elizabeth Tyler, York), and “Modern Popular Culture and the Middle Ages: Constructions and Continuities” (Frank Pointner / Martin Schubert, Essen).

Further workshops picked up other topics that were proposed by CARMEN board members or participants in the meeting and represented a vast range of interests across the international medievalist community: “Coping and adapting: The role of climate and famine in the medieval eastward expansion” (Andreas Rüther, Essen), “Wuppertal graduate school: Document – Text – Editing. Conditions and Forms of Transformation and Modeling: a Transdisciplinary Perspective” (Jochen Johrendt, Wuppertal), “Battlefields project” (Cristina Pimenta, Porto / Luis Fonseca, Porto /
Fundação Aljubarrota), “Queens, Countesses and Female Rulership” (Amalie Foeßel).

The Forum for National Associations held its annual general meeting, as well as Arc Humanities Press, and the strong connection between CARMEN and MECERN, the Medieval Central Europe Research Network, was renewed by a special workshop.

Last but not least CARMEN elected a new Academic Director, Prof. Catherine Clarke from Southampton. The whole CARMEN board is grateful to her for taking over this task – and is even more grateful to Prof. Gerhard Jaritz, Budapest, who has served as Academic Director for many years in a productive, constructive and moreover warm and supportive fashion.

CARMEN tries to not only assemble medievalists from all over the world but also to present a gem of a “medieval” venue wherever we meet. This time we managed to present a hidden jewel, at least hidden to most people internationally. Essen female monastery was founded in Carolingian times, was close to the tenth and eleventh century kings through its abbesses Mathilde, Sophia and Theophanu (971 to 1058) being members of the Ottonian royal family. While relatively little-known today, the old abbey church (now Essen cathedral) is home to the famous Golden Madonna and a rich high-medieval treasury. For those who were still present on Sunday, the world heritage site of the “Zeche Zollverein” with the “Ruhr Museum” combined medieval history with recent developments in the Ruhr region.
2. CARMEN Business
European Alliance for the Social Sciences and Humanities (EASSH -
EASSH brings together major learned societies in the social sciences and humanities and several pan-European research organizations. CARMEN was elected from among EASSH's membership to be one of the members of the Governing Board, alongside the European Sociological Association and the Irish Humanities Alliance, all representing the college of European associations and institutions.
Carmen’s Core Committee member, Cristina Pimenta (Portugal), has been working with EASSH on developing a common position reflecting various concerns and proposed remedies to the functioning of the Horizon 2020 Societal Challenges. For current activities of EASSH see here.
Read further on EASSH.
Taiwan Association of Classical, Medieval & Renaissance Studies
CARMEN Director of Projects, Dr. Simon Forde, was a plenary speaker at the Taiwan Association of Classical, Medieval & Renaissance Studies (TACMRS) conference at National Pingtung University in the south of the island on 21-22 October, 2016. Fellow plenarists were Profs. Patrick Geary (Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton) and Donald A. Beecher (Carleton University in Ottawa). Dr. Forde's presentation was on Global Collaborative Possibilities in Research and Publishing, presenting many of the trends across the world towards collaborative research teams (following the Sonderforschungsbereich paradigm) and research with a measurable social impact. This meeting, plus follow-up meetings at Zhejiang University and Peking University in China, have led to plans to launch international collaboration through CARMEN on the history of the senses and on exchange along the historic Silk Roads. Particular thanks go to Nicholas Koss for organizing and supporting this very profitable visit.

These developments build on links forged in September in Argentina during Dr. Forde's trip to Buenos Aires at the SAEMED national medieval conference, during which visit the project on the history of the senses, together with international research on the presentation of the medieval past in video-games, were initiated.

Photograph: Nicholas Koss, Simon Forde and Donald A. Beecher (l. to r.) to the left of the president of National Pingtung University and Patrick Geary to the right, with other deans and dignitaries from the host university)
(December in the Book of Hours of Adélaïde de Savoie (Musée Condé 78), c. 1460-1465)
3. Reports from Member Organizations
Medieval Central European Research Network (MECERN)
In 2015-2016, Medieval Central European Research Network (MECERN) was present at several important regional and international medieval events. In Spring, the network held its Second Biennial Conference on Unity and Diversity in Medieval (Central) Europe, organized in Olomouc (Czech Republic), in collaboration with the network’s local partner, the Palacký University. In May, MECERN organized a visit to the exhibition On Common Path – Budapest and Kraków in the Middle Ages, and in September, the network joined the hosts of the Centenial Workshop –  Erik Fügedi, a Central European historian, aiming to commemorate 100 years’ birth anniversary of the prominent Hungarian historian. At the International Medieval Congress in Leeds (UK), the network hosted a successful round session on Migration, Borders and Refugees in Medieval Central Europe, where comparable realities in medieval Central Europe were analyzed in answering the question of how similar crises situations can be traced in the area during Middle Ages. The network was also present at the Annual meeting of CARMEN that took place in Essen (Germany). In this year, the network finalized its first pilot project, an essay competition about the image of historic (mainly medieval) neighbors in the schoolbooks of the Central European region, done in cooperation with the Georg Eckert Institute for International Schoolbook Research in Braunschweig (Germany). For current activities of MECERN see here.
Read further information here.

New Schoenberg Database of Manuscripts (SDBM), University of Pennsylvania
The Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries is pleased to announce the beta release of the New Schoenberg Database of Manuscripts (SDBM). Thanks to support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the New SDBM is being redeveloped to allow you—the members of our user community—to help us build a finding aid for the world’s manuscripts.

The final release of the New SDBM is scheduled for April 2017. In the meantime, we invite you to
sign up now to start contributing and testing new features and functionality. Your participation and feedback will help us build a better tool for your research.For more information or email us.

Forthcoming Conferences of Member Societies
4. Meetings and Study Programs for Early Career Researchers
1. Masterclass on 'Anchoring Sanctity' (Dutch National Research School in Classical Studies)
31 May to 1 June 2017

2. Department of Medieval Studies at Central European University (Budapest), 2016-2017
For undergraduate students who are interested in its programs, CEU organizes an
interdisciplinary conference in August 2017. CEU provides a variety of merit-based scholarships and various other types of financial support available to students from any country.

3. Les Enluminures is very excited to announce that its new program,
Manuscripts in the Curriculum, is about to begin. It is working with colleges and universities to provide their students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with a diverse collection of medieval manuscripts. 

For additional conference calendars:
Medieval Academy of America Calendar
Leeds Calendar
(Image: Walters Art Museum, W42512R. Flemish, c. 1510)
1. Announcement of ACOR Fellowships 2017–2018
Deadline for all applications is 1 February 2017. For more information, please see the announcement on MESA’s website.
Other fellowships administered by the
Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC) are also available.

2. The Bonnie Wheeler Fellowship Fund of The Dallas Foundation announces its Research Fellowship for 2017, designed to support the research of women medievalists at the rank of associate professor. The $10,000 award is to be used during the period between 1 June and 31 December 2017. Deadline for applications is 31 January 2017. For full details and how to apply.​

For another helpful job site visit the Medievalist Jobs Facebook page.
Season’s wishes to all readers
Happy and successful 2017!
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