Imagining French Narrative and Song

c. 1100 – c. 1350

January 14th, 2023

Conference – 9 am
St John’s College (Lightfoot Room, Old Divinity School)

University of Cambridge

Concert – 7:30 pm
The Round Church, Bridge St., Cambridge

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Sarah Kay

We are delighted to welcome Dr. Sarah Kay, Professor Emerita of French Literature, Thought and Culture at New York University, Life Fellow of Girton College, University of Cambridge, distinguished scholar, and specialist in French, Occitan and Latin medieval literature.

Dr. Kay will open the conference with ‘Naturally International: French Song in the Early Thirteenth Century’.

The conference schedule and all abstracts are available via the sidebar (if not open, click at the top left).

The role of Old French narrative and song in the dissemination of chivalric ideals and culture, within France and into Europe, has long been acknowledged. ‘Imagining French Narrative and Song, c.1100– c.1350’ explores these works at three levels. First, how were these works imagined at the time of their creation? Second, how were they re-imagined, translated, and adapted during their cultural diffusion? And last, how are we, as modern scholars and interpreters, to imagine these works, as literature, as performance, and as music?

This event aims to explore the processes of creation, translation, adaptation, and interpretation in Old French narrative and song, including underexplored musical aspects, and other closely related literary, musicological, and performance elements.

Concert: Ensemble Leones

We are also very pleased to present the noted Ensemble Leones for a post-conference concert: “In the Frensce manere”: French Song in Medieval Europe, French and French-inspired medieval music, in Cambridge’s Romanesque landmark, the Round Church.

Many thanks

to Music & Letters, the University of Cambridge, and RMA for their support. For discounts available to RMA members, please see the respective sales websites.