In 2002, the Medieval Institute inaugurated a lecture series in honor of Robert M. and Ricki Conway. Robert Conway was a 1966 graduate of Notre Dame and trustee of the University; he was, and his wife Ricki continues to be, a long-time friend and supporter of the Medieval Institute. The annual Conway Lectures bring senior scholars of international distinction to Notre Dame each fall to speak on topics across a variety of disciplines.
The 2023 Conway Lectures
"Women and Knowledge in the Middle Ages"
- Linda Gale Jones (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona)
- Leonora Neville (UW–Madison)
- Sara Ritchey (UT Knoxville)
Dates & Times
Thursday, September 7, 2023
- 2–3:30 p.m., Lecture 1
- 3:45–5:15 p.m., Lecture 2
- 5:15–6:30 p.m. Reception
Friday, September 8, 2023
- 10–11:30 a.m., Lecture 3
- 11:45 a.m.–12:45 p.m., Speaker Roundtable
2022: "Medieval Multilingualism"
- Scott Johnson (U of Oklahoma), "Christian Indigeneity and Christian Language in the Roman Near East"
- Paul Russell (Cambridge), "Interrogating the Anecdote: Thinking about Multilingualism in Western Britain, 600-1200" | Prof. Russell's Lecture Handout
- Susie Phillips (Northwestern), "Trading Types: Mercantile Multilingualism and Race in the Premodern Virtual Classroom"
- Speaker Roundtable, "Medieval Multilingualism"
2021: "Dante and Medieval Studies"
In September 2021, the Conway Lectures celebrated two important anniversaries: the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante Alighieri and the 75th anniversary of the Medieval Institute.
Carol Lansing (UC, Santa Barbara), "The Power to Choose? Piccarda Donati in the Paradiso and Girls in Bologna's Criminal Court"
Areli Marina (Kansas), "Battering Ram and Fire: Civic Glory and Devastation in Dante's Age"
Simon Gilson (Oxford), "Dante's Philosophers"
2020: "Race in the Middle Ages"
- Sara Lipton, "'Jews Will Not Replace Us': Identity and Difference in Medieval Polemic and Modern Politics"
- Cord J. Whitaker, "'From Medieval America to Modern': Medieval Black Metaphors, the Harlem Renaissance, and Antiracist Chivalry Today"
- Suzanne Conklin Akbari, "Racializing Religion: The Case of the Ethiopian Magus and the Jews of Cologne"
- Roundtable with all speakers and audience Q&A
A graduate-student-led reading group on premodern critical race studies was also formed for the 2020–21 year. This biweekly reading group created a space in which participants read and discussed foundational theoretical texts within this subfield and thought through ways to apply this theory to their own work. Readings for the fall semester included books and articles published by the 2020 Conway speakers. Following the Conway lectures, readings and discussion topics were chosen based on the needs and research interests of group participants.
Peter Adamson (Ludwig Maximilians Universitat München), "Don't Think For Yourself: Faith and Authority in Medieval Philosophy"
Published as Don't Think For Yourself: Faith and Authority in Medieval Philosophy (2022)
Lecture 1 "Taqlīd: Authority and the Intellectual Elite in the Islamic World"
video | slides
Lecture 2 "Testing the Prophets: Reason and Medieval Religious Debates"
video | slides
Lecture 3 "The Right to Speak: Women in Byzantine and Latin Christian Philosophy"
video | slides
Niklaus Largier (UC Berkeley), "The Rhetoric of Mysticism"
Susan Rankin (Cambridge), "Manuscripts for Musicians: 750–900"
Published as Sounding the Word of God: Carolingian Books for Singers (2022)
William J. Courtenay (U Wisconsin–Madison), "Religious Ritual and Prayers for the Dead in the Medieval University of Paris"
Published as Rituals for the Dead: Religion and Community in the Medieval University of Paris (2018)
John V. Fleming (Princeton), "Asceticism and Literature in the Middle Ages"
Alice-Mary Talbot (Dumbarton Oaks), "Varieties of Monastic Experience in Byzantium, 9th–15th Centuries"
Published as Varieties of Monastic Experience in Byzantium, 800-1453 (2019)
Anne D. Hedeman (U Kansas), "Visual Translation and the First French Humanists”
Published as Visual Translation: Illuminated Manuscripts and the First French Humanists (2022)
Sylvia Huot (Cambridge), “Giants in Medieval Romance Literature”
Published as Outsiders: The Humanity and Inhumanity of Giants in Medieval French Prose Romance (2016)
Barbara Newman (Northwestern), “Medieval Crossover: Reading the Secular Against the Sacred”
Published as Medieval Crossover: Reading the Secular Against the Sacred (2013)
Roberta Frank (Yale), “Slip Slidin’ Away: The Nimble Leaps of Early Northern Verse”
Published as The Etiquette of Early Northern Verse (2022)
John Marenbon (Cambridge), “Abelard in Four Dimensions”
Published as Abelard in Four Dimensions: A Twelfth-Century Philosopher in His Context and Ours (2013)
Jonathan Riley-Smith (Cambridge), “The Templars and the Hospitallers as Professed Religious in the Holy Land, 1120-1291”
Published as Templars and Hospitallers as Professed Religious in the Holy Land (2009)
A. C. Spearing (U Virginia), “Medieval Autographies: The 'I' of the Text”
Published as Medieval Autographies: The "I" of the Text (2012)
Beat Brenk (University of Basel), “Our Lady: The Apse and the Icon”
Published as The Apse, The Image, and The Icon: An Historical Perspective of the Apse as a Space for Images (Reichert Verlag, 2010)
Calvin Bower (Notre Dame), “Grasping the Wind: Words for Melodies in South-German Liturgical Music, 800-1200”
Rosamond McKitterick (Cambridge), “Perceptions of the Past in the Early Middle Ages”
Published as Perceptions of the Past in the Early Middle Ages (2006)
Paul Strohm (Columbia), “English Writing and the Pre-Machiavellian Prince”
Published as Politique: Languages of Statecraft between Chaucer and Shakespeare (2005)
Fr. Ulrich Horst (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität), “The Teaching Authority of the Pope”
Published as The Dominicans and the Pope: Papal Teaching Authority in the Medieval and Early Modern Thomist Tradition (2006)