TitleBorders as Areas of Control
Date/TimeThursday 7 July 2022: 09.00-10.30
OrganiserIMC Programming Committee
Moderator/ChairLucas Villegas-Aristizábal, Bader International Study Centre, Queen's University, Ontario
Paper 1527-a Border inside Borders: Forms and Functions of Boundaries Related to Medieval Castles in the Rural Landscape
(Language: English)
Martina Bernardi, Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici, Università degli Studi Roma Tre
Index Terms: Archaeology - General; Archaeology - Sites
Paper 1527-b Settlements and Frontiers around São Mamede's Hill in the Middle Ages
(Language: English)
Ana Cristina Santos Leitão, Faculdade de Letras, Universidade de Lisboa
Index Terms: Historiography - Medieval; Local History
Paper 1527-c (Illegally) Crossing Thresholds: Passing as Animals in the Human-Controlled Landscape
(Language: English)
Anthony Revelle, Department of Romance Languages & Literatures, University of Michigan
Index Terms: Language and Literature - French or Occitan
AbstractPaper -a:
Castles are fortified structures that have shown different forms and functions over the centuries, closely related to the historical and territorial context in which the structures were built. However, these realities in the rural landscape have two characteristics connected with boundaries and landscape: to border and to be borded. Castles often (but not always during the Middle Ages) have the function of enclosing the population within the walls, but at the same time these are structures located within other borders. This paper aims to illustrate all the borders evidence related to medieval castles in the Italian context.

Paper -b:
The main research question of this PhD dissertation is the formation of the urban network composed by 8 villages, located around the Serra de São Mamede. The spatio-temporal delimitation of the research field, is in Alto Alentejo region in the kingdom of Portugal and the chronological scope defined is from the 13th to 15th centuries.

The network originated in the process of Christian reconquest, of Iberia Peninsula, and was created from the need to populate an almost desert area that needed to be occupied in order to create a land border with the kingdom of Castile in an offensive/defensive logic for that territory, which represented a strategic physical barrier.

Paper -c:
In Guillaume de Palerne, written c.1200 in Old French, the daughter of the emperor of Rome escapes her father's authority by fleeing the city disguised as a bear with the young knight she wants to marry. The lovers' flight depends upon their ability to pass as animals as their journey involves a succession of landscapes (countryside, wilderness, gardens, and a quarry) that are all, in various ways, under the dominion of the emperor or of other lords. This paper proposes to read this chivalric romance in terms of how a medieval author imagines an animal perspective on landscapes that are designed for human intents. For this purpose, I read Guillaume de Palerne alongside a tale of the Roman de Renart, that stages the adventures of a noble fox robbing rich peasants and monks, for Renart presents a case study of envisioning a rural landscape at animal height while metaphorically reasserting the noble dominion over the countryside. This comparative approach aims to investigate the place of wild(er)ness within noble identities as within medieval landscapes, through the series of crossed thresholds staged in these texts.