CFP: International Medieval Congress, Leeds, UK, 6th-9th July 2020

The Caucasus as Borderland
The Caucasus is perhaps Eurasia’s quintessential borderland. Frequently contested by empires, its history is marked by the passage of armies, migrants, traders and travellers, and by attempts to prevent these passages. But beyond this status as a borderland, this theme speaks to broader issues of how far we should consider the Caucasus as a liminal space. Did the peoples of the Caucasus see their regions as ‘borderlands’, and if so, how did this affect their self-perceptions and cultural development?
In order to promote interdisciplinary dialogue on these issues, The Medieval Caucasus Network proposes a series of panels at the International Medieval Congress- Europe’s largest gathering of medieval scholars. We welcome papers in the fields of History, Art History, Archaeology, Medieval Studies, Literature or Historical Linguistics on the cultures of the Caucasus (broadly defined), its relationship with the surrounding areas, or outside attitudes to the region. Papers relating to the Caucasus’ relationship with Byzantium are potentially eligible for bursaries; further funding for other topics may also become available. Possible paper subjects may include, but are not limited to:
– The (in)significance of borders in shaping Caucasian history and culture;
– Perceptions of borders and liminal spaces in the Caucasus;
– Liminal spaces in Caucasian religion, folklore, or material culture;
– Comparisons between the Caucasus and other borderlands, whether past or contemporary.

For further information, please see the full conference CFP at

Deadlines for Expressions of Interest
If your proposed paper topic concerns the relationship between Byzantium and the Caucasus, you may be eligible for a bursary funded by the Mary Jaharis Center. If you would like your paper to be considered for this bursary, please submit an expression of interest to John Latham Sprinkle at 580698 “at” soas. ac. uk or James Baillie at james.baillie “at” univie. ac. at by 30th August 2019. Please send a paper title, academic affiliation, and a 100-word abstract. If your paper does not relate to the Caucasus and Byzantium, the deadline for expressions of interest is 13th September (also to be sent to either of the email addresses listed above). Please also indicate whether you will require travel funding in order to attend, and if so, approximately how much you estimate will be necessary.