CFP: Tradition and Innovation in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

We are pleased to announce a call for papers for an upcoming conference on “Tradition and Innovation in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,” to be held in Nancy (France) on 21-22 November 2024. This conference will be held in hybrid mode.

Conference Theme: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight has captivated readers for centuries with its complex narrative, moral dilemmas, and poetic excellence. The conference seeks to explore the dynamic interplay between tradition and innovation within the text, examining how the poem, but also the works derived from it and the scholarship devoted to it, draw upon established traditions while introducing novel elements.

The first axis of our inquiry focuses on the poem itself. While it is steeped in the traditions of Arthurian romance and Middle English poetry, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight departs from them and frustrates expectations in significant ways, both in terms of its content and its form. This exploration aims to shed light on the creative ways in which Sir Gawain and the Green Knight navigates established literary norms, both adhering to tradition and introducing innovative elements within its narrative structure and thematic content.

The second axis of our inquiry focuses on the many works inspired by Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. This includes rewritings, translations, and visual interpretations that grapple with the tension between fidelity to the original and the impulse to reimagine the narrative within contemporary contexts. From modern language adaptations to artistic representations, we seek to understand how the poem’s essence endures through the transformative lens of subsequent generations.

We invite proposals for individual papers (20 minutes). Please submit abstracts (250-300 words) along with a brief bio to by 20 April. Include your name, institutional affiliation, contact information, and any audiovisual requirements.

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