Medieval Studies and the Far Right

MSF poster

Medieval Studies and the Far Right Conference


09:30-10:00 - Registration

Opening remarks : Alyssa Steiner

10:10-11:30 - Session 1: Constructing the Medieval

● Elias Friedrichs, Cologne: Were the Middle Ages fascist? Pitfalls of Evaluating the Past

● Sophia Mösch, Oxford: Twentieth-century Western Constructions of Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages: The Problem of Periodisation

● Henrike Lähnemann, Oxford: Remembering the Reformation from the Right

11:30-12:00 - Coffee

12:00-13:00 - Session 2: Racialising in the Middle Ages

● Thomas Revell, Oxford: The Persecution and Forced Conversion of Judas in the Old English Elene

● Adrian Meyer, Cologne: Bourgeois, Jews and Money. Imagining Non-Monetary Middle Ages

13:00-14:00 - Lunch

14:00-15:00 - Session 3: Instrumentalising the Middle Ages

● Linus Ubl, Oxford: Place and identity: Storytelling of lieux de memoire. The example of Montségur

● Dominic Weber, Basel: Satanism, Neopaganism, Antisemitism- The Middle Ages as an inspirational Space in Far-Right Black, Pagan and Viking Metal

15:00-15:30 - Break/Crypt tour

The 12th-century church of St Peter-in-the-East is on the site of St. Edmund Hall, and currently serves as the college library During this break, there will be the opportunity to tour the crypt of this Norman church with Professor Henrike Lähnemann.

15:30-17:00 - Session 4: Theorising the Medieval

● Ilya Afanasyev, Moscow: Beyond the Far Right: Medieval Studies and Common-Sense Nationalism

● Oliver Eagleton, Oxford: New Materialism, Premodern Matter

● Sam Dunnett, Oxford: Poetry, preferably nature, and the age of myths’: Fascist Ecology and Premodernity’

17:00-18:00 – Plenary chaired by Charlie Powell.


Deadline: 12th March 2019

This interdisciplinary conference invites speakers to explore the relationship, past and present, between the medieval and far right ideologies. Key areas for focus are: examining racisms in the medieval, unpicking the history of medieval studies, and confronting contemporary far right medievalism.

We welcome abstracts of 300-500 words relating (but not limited to) the following topics: 

  • Racial constructions, anti-Semitism, and racism in medieval history and culture
  • Discourses of power in medieval text
  • The history of medieval studies and cultural nationalism
  • Racism in 20th century scholarship
  • Fascism and the aesthetics of the Medieval
  • The Medieval and the alt-right
  • Far-right medievalisms in the academy and in public discourse

Please send abstracts to organisers Charlie Powell and Alyssa Steiner at by 12th March 2019.

In association with Oxford Medieval Studies, Sponsored by The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities.

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 A conference in association with Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH).


Oxford Medieval Studies