CALL FOR PAPERS
ARTHURIAN VILLAINS ON FILM:
STUDIES IN COMMEMORATION OF THE THIRTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF JOHN BOORMAN'S EXCALIBUR
THE 46TH INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS ON MEDIEVAL STUDIES,
WESTERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY, KALAMAZOO, MI
12-15 MAY 2011
CO-SPONSORED BY THE ALLIANCE FOR THE PROMOTION OF RESEARCH ON THE VILLAINS OF THE MATTER OF BRITAIN AND THE VIRTUAL SOCIETY FOR THE
STUDY OF POPULAR CULTURE AND THE MIDDLE AGES
PROPOSALS BY 1 SEPTEMBER 2010 (EARLY SUBMISSION RECOMMENDED)
In furtherance of our respective missions, the Alliance for the Promotion of Research on the Villains of the Matter of Britain and the Virtual Society for the Study of Popular Culture and the Middle Ages (formerly the Society for the Study of Popular Culture and the Middle Ages) are proposing a session devoted to the theme of Arthurian Villains on Film: Studies in Commemoration of the Thirtieth Anniversary of John Boorman’s EXCALIBUR. Papers included in these sessions will explore the representations of the villains of the Matter of Britain, both traditional ones (e.g. Cerdic, Lot of Orkney, Mark of Cornwall, Mordred, Morgan le Fay, Morgause, and Vortigern) as well as those (e.g. Brack, Cynric, Mab, Mad Madame Mim, Palamides, Ruber, and, even sometimes, Merlin) unique to specific productions, as represented in films, television programming, and other visual electronic multimedia, such as electronic games and Internet videos.
The Arthurian legend has been represented in films since at least the late 1890s and in television programming since the 1950s, and the villains of these productions serve important, though often overlooked, roles as the initiators of dramatic action and as the counteragents to their respective heroes. Despite these vital narrative functions, study of the filmic villains of the Matter of Britain remains in its infancy with few studies engaged with their role in specific productions and with only a handful of overviews of their careers as investigated (in chronological order) by Elizabeth S. Sklar, Jacqueline de Weever, Maureen Fries, and Michael A. Torregrossa.
Since its introduction in the 1980s, Arthurian film and television studies has matured into a legitimate field of investigation, and the thirtieth anniversary of John Boorman’s EXCALIBUR (1981), a key text for the study of Arthurian villains on film, marks an appropriate time to reflect upon the role that the villains play in the Arthurian story. Boorman’s EXCALIBUR has become a seminal text for scholars of Arthurian-themed films and part of the modern canon of popular Arthuriana. Moreover, it is especially important for its presentation of the villains Morgana and Mordred and their relationship to King Arthur, as Boorman is the first filmmaker (as Torregrossa has explored) to fully depict the incest of King Arthur (here with Morgana), an act that results in the conception of Mordred, and its consequences. In addition, Boorman’s versions of both Morgan le Fay and Mordred have shaped countless later representations of these characters in popular Arthuriana throughout the globe.
PLEASE SUBMIT PROPOSALS OF 500 WORDS OR LESS, PARTICIPANT INFORMATION FORM (AVAILABLE AT
http://www.wmich.edu/medieval/congress/submissions/index.html IN JULY), AND A COPY OF YOUR CV TO THE ORGANIZERS AT
PLEASE INCLUDE “KALAMAZOO 2011 PROPOSAL” IN THE SUBJECT LINE
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE ALLIANCE FOR THE PROMOTION OF RESEARCH ON THE VILLAINS OF THE MATTER OF BRITAIN, PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR
BLOG AT http://ArthurianVillainyResearch.blogspot.com/
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE VIRTUAL SOCIETY FOR THE STUDY OF POPULAR CULTURE AND THE MIDDLE AGES, PLEASE CHECK OUT OUR BLOG AT
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