Gender and Sexuality in the Reformation

Society for Reformation Studies Conference, Westminster College, Cambridge, UK, 9-11 April 2014

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The Reformation affected not only men but also women. In particular, the Protestant rejection of the ideal of celibacy led to a new emphasis on the centrality of the family and on the roles of both the paterfamilias and materfamilias. Through the closure of monasteries and convents, the Protestant Reformation affected the options open to women as well as men, and particularly possibilities for women’s education. Shifts in the understandings of the legal place of marriage brought with them changes to the legal and social status of women. Women as well as men could either support or reject evangelical ideas, reading the Bible and responding to the call to proclaim the Gospel in ways which were deeply shaped by these changing expectations of correct gender roles. Women in the early Protestant Reformation who claimed the right to proclaim the Gospel in word or print might be silenced by either supporters or opponents of the Reformation cause. Classical concepts of masculinity and femininity might be read to modulate or contradict biblical views. The Reformation resulted in shifts in ways of thinking about and defining masculinity and femininity.

 Keynote speakers will include

  • Professor Merry Wiesner-Hanks (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
  • Professor Kaspar von Greyerz(University of Basel)
  • Dr Sarah Apetrei (University of Oxford)

We invite papers (25 minutes maximum) exploring any aspect of gender and sexuality in the Reformation.  As always, papers which reflect the current work of participants, regardless of their relevance to the theme, are also very welcome.

For further information, please contact:

Authority in the Reformation

Annual Conference of the Society for Reformation Studies,Westminster College, Cambridge, 3-5 April 2013

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The Reformation represented a crisis of authority on many levels.  In an age which was heir to Aristotelian and Neoplatonist accounts of hierarchy, and which regarded anarchy as the gravest social ill, it was inevitable that questions of power and legitimacy would assume a dominant role in contemporary controversies.  The conflicts between Scripture and Tradition as theological authorities, and between Scripture and the Papacy (or councils), or between the Pope and the monarch (or consistory), as authorities in church government, were reflected in numerous more local debates and frictions.  The Reformation and questions of authority are therefore inextricably linked.

We invite papers (25 minutes maximum) addressing different aspects of this rich and varied theme.  What views of power and legitimacy underlay different conceptions of authority in this period? How was authority displayed, asserted, and exercised?  Under what circumstances might authority be challenged or obedience withheld?  What constituted warranties for truth-claims? To what extent were personal sanctity, erudition, or mere strength of numbers regarded as conferring authority? These and many other questions are raised by the theme of Authority in the Reformation.

Leading us in the consideration of these issues will be Professor Gillian R. Evans (University of Cambridge), Professor Susan E. Schreiner (University of Chicago), and Dr J. Patrick Hornbeck II (Fordham University).

As always, papers which reflect the current work of participants, regardless of their relevance to the theme, are also very welcome.

Further informaton on the Society for Reformation Studies and its conferences can be obtained by emailing Dr Charlotte or Dr Aaron Clay

England and North-eastern France: Religious Interaction from the Reformation to the Enlightenment

Université de Strasbourg / Bibliothèque Humaniste de Sélestat, 14-15 June 2013

The Reformation was indisputably the movement at the centre of exchanges between Eastern France – and in particular Alsace – and England. Amongst topics of interest for this conference will be: the significance of the Reformers of Alsace in the creation and shaping of the Church of England; English interest in the works of Martin Bucer, and a re-examination of his contribution to the development of Anglican theology in the Tudor period and to the liturgical reforms of Thomas Cranmer; the importance of Strasbourg throughout the Tudor period for the printing of religious tracts viewed unfavourably by royal authorities; the publication by Wendelin Richelius of Strasbourg of the first edition of the Commentarii rerum in ecclesia gestarum in 1554 by the English exile John Foxe which, much enlarged, became the celebrated Acts and Monuments; and links between Strasbourg and Alsatian Protestant hymnody and the development of congregational psalmody within the English Church during the 16th century.

Conference papers may be given in French, English or German, and will be published.

Proposals should be submitted before 31 January 2013 to Annie Noblesse-Rocher (, Jean-Jacques Chardin (, Anne Bandry-Scubbi (, and Gerald Hobbs ( The Steering Committee of the Conference will notify authors of their decision before the end of February 2013.

Psalm Culture and the Politics of Translation

Charterhouse Square, Queen Mary, University of London, 15-17 July 2013

We invite paper and session proposals for an interdisciplinary conference on English responses to the Psalms, from the Anglo-Saxon period to the Civil War. Invited speakers include Eric Stanley (Oxford), Jane Toswell (Western Ontario), Daniel Anlezark (Sydney), Elizabeth Solopova (Oxford), Annie Sutherland (Oxford), James Simpson (Harvard), Brian Cummings (York) and Margaret Hannay (Siena College, NY).

The Psalms have been at the centre of English religious life, language and identity since the Augustinian mission. This conference aims to bring together scholars working in different periods and disciplines to open up new avenues of discussion and debate. We are interested in all aspects of the English Psalm tradition, from the conversion to the Civil War, and possible areas of exploration might include:

The authority of the vernacular, and the controversy of translation Specific contexts for translation (monastic production, translations by prisoners, etc.) Psalms as political commentary Musical settings of Psalms, on the page and in performance Psalm books as physical objects and works of art Iconography Ecclesiastical and private devotion Psalms and the formation of an English literary canon Literary borrowings and intertextuality Reading, annotating and glossing Comparative analysis of individual Psalms across languages and periods The Psalms as a site of inter-cultural dialogue (between faiths, between countries)

We welcome proposals for papers (no more than 20 minutes) and panels (of 3 papers) from both established scholars and graduate students. It is envisaged that selected papers will be considered for publication in an edited, peer-reviewed collection. Using the forms provided here, please submit all proposals and Deadline for proposals: 1st December 2012 Organisers: Ruth Ahnert (QMUL), Tamara Atkin (QMUL), Francis Leneghan (Oxford)