Archive for the ‘Conferences’ Category

If you live in the New York City area this January, and are an historian, you’re in luck: the AHA is in our back yard this time around. Of course, we’ve also been thrown a curve ball in that New Year’s Day is a Thursday, so the conference goes all the way through Monday (ick…).  Now, from a medievalist’s perspective the AHA tends to be pretty grim. There are very, very few premodern sessions, and the ones that do exist aren’t always in one’s area of interest. That being said, here are the sessions that caught my eye in the program, complete with hyperlink to more detailed information. Maybe I’ll see you at some of them!

Friday, January 2

AHA Session 2  Teaching and Learning the Great War in the Digital Age

Time and Place: 1:00 PM-3:00 PM, Beekman Parlor (New York Hilton, Second Floor)

Society of Civil War Historians 2 Contested Loyalty: Debates over Patriotism in the Civil War North

Time and Place: 3:30 PM-5:30 PM, Conference Room J (Sheraton New York, Lower Level)

AHA Session 42 Digital Tools: From the Archive to Publication

Time and Place: 3:30 PM-5:30 PM, Beekman Parlor (New York Hilton, Second Floor)

Co-sponsored by MapStory Reception for History Bloggers and Twitterstorians

Time and Place: 5:30 PM-6:30 PM, Central Park East (Sheraton New York, Second Floor)


Saturday, January 3

AHA Session 75 Imperial Policing and the Networks of Empire

Time and Place:8:30 AM-10:00 AM, Conference Room D (Sheraton New York, Lower Level)


One of the smaller projects I have in the works is an article on Frederick Barbarossa’s generalship, a version of which I gave at Leeds Medieval Congress this past summer.  In working on it again yesterday, I came across my notes from some of the Leeds sessions I attended–incomplete notes, but they might be of interest to folks researching the crusades or medieval military history, as a lot of these papers represent the latest innovative work from dynamic scholars, both younger and established.  I apologize in advance for the choppiness and uneven coverage, as well as for any errors of interpretation of which I’m sure there are a few. And regarding the armor and weapons papers, much is lost since those presentations relied heavily on great visual aids.  See the archived congress pages for more information about the sessions themselves.

Here’s a list of the papers my notes cover:

–Danielle Park, “Diplomats and Diplomatics: New Directions in the Use of Charter Evidence – The Concept and Consequences of the Crusades in the Charters of Crusade Regents”

–James Naus, “Crusade and Legitimacy: The Ideology and Imagery of Reconquest in France”

–Ian Wilson; “Cowardice, Chivalry, and the Crusades”

–Andrew Spencer, “‘Apres moi, le deluge’: The Lancastrian Affinity after Earl Thomas”

–David Simpkin, “Retinues under Stress: The Impact of War Mortalities on Military Networks during the Later Middle Ages”

–Lucy Rhymer, “‘We, my blessed Lord Gloucester’s servants, may now come out of hiding’: The Fate of Duke Humphrey’s Posthumous Retinue”

–Claire Featherstonhaugh, “The Government Activities of the Earls, c. 1330-1360”

–Kathleen Neal, “Reason and Right: Letters of Request to Chancery in 13th-Century England”

–Gwillim Dodd, “Form and Substance: Letters to King Edward II, 1307-1327”

–Nick Dupras, “Busy Hammers: The Construction of Armour in Late Medieval Europe”

–Jenny Day, “‘Maen Wyn, do not leave your knife behind!’: The Fall and Rise of Knives and Bows in Medieval Welsh Poetry”

–Arbitration and Reputation: Informal Dispute Resolution and ‘Out of Court’ Settlements in Medieval Law – A Round Table Discussion

–Thom Richardson, “Armourer’s Tools”

–Kelly DeVries, “What Armour Was Worn by Second Crusaders?: Evidence from the Baptismal Font of the Church of San Frediano, Lucca”

–SarahLouise Howells, “Affluence and Aesthetics: An Investigation into the French Armoured Gisant”


On January 4th I journeyed to the heart of historical studies in the United States–the American Historical Association’s convention, this year conveniently located in Chicago. Only a miserable 13 hours by train from Rochester. The train on the way out was too hot; the one on the way back was cold, but that’s much more bearable. One day, after I pen that NYT best-seller, I’m going to fly everywhere, or at least get a cabin if I’m traveling by train. Still young enough to spend a night in a coach seat, but not by much. Maybe I should follow my friend Jay’s systematic approach to train travel, which involves coming prepared with ear plugs, a sleeping mask, and an inflatable neck-pillow. (more…)