The Shape of Return
Progress, Process, and Repetition in Medieval Culture
29-30 September 2017
Francesco Giusti and Daniel Reeve
Elizabeth Eva Leach (University of Oxford)
- What shapes does return take, and how does it shape cultural artifacts of the Middle Ages?
- How does return (as fact or possibility) regulate the flow of time and the experience of human life?
- How can return as a final goal and return as a problematic repetition coexist?
- Is repetition simply identified with a state of sin, or can it lead somewhere?
- Neoplatonic emanation and return to the self / God; the temporality and shape of religious self-perfection
- Refrain and/or repetition in musical and literary forms such as lyric, lyric collections or narrative verse incorporating refrains or concatenation
- Ulyssean return in romance, theology, hagiography; return as resolution and/or disruption
- The processes of return inherent in the use and experience of literary topoi and loci classici; exegetical return; the tension between innovation and tradition in biblical commentary
- Religious conversion as return: teleology, retrospection, spatial metaphors
- Return as related to medieval conceptions of originality and reproduction
- The experience of return in daily life: liturgy, ritual, diurnal and seasonal cycles, the mechanical clock
- Return in medieval temporal theory: for example, the medieval reception of circular time in Stoic philosophy or the book of Ecclesiastes
- The geometry of return in (for instance) mystical writing
- The queerness and/or conservatism of return
- Return from digression; return as a regulatory mechanism
- Return theorized as a constitutive process of subjectivity and/or intellection
- Return as a psychoanalytic concept related to obsession, repression, Nachträglichkeit