The 45th International Congress on Medieval Studies, the largest academic gathering of medievalists in the world, will be starting one month from today. The congress will be taking place at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan, from May 13th to 16th and is expected to draw over 3000 people.
The event will include 605 sessions featuring the presentation of scholarly papers, panel discussions, roundtables, workshops, and artistic performances. In addition, the exhibits hall will be filled with more than 70 publishers, used-book dealers and other vendors. There also will be some 90 business meetings and receptions sponsored by learned societies, associations and institutions.
The 605 sessions is down slightly from last year's congress, which had 612 sessions. Elizabeth Teviotdale, Assistant Director of the Congress, told Medievalists.net "The number of Congress sessions has hovered somewhere above 600 for the past seven years, with the numbers not always rising, and we consider that to be the upper limit for both intellectual and practical reasons. Most important, with as many as 600 sessions, the schedule necessarily includes a great number of unfortunate clashes of two or more sessions on related topics being scheduled at the same time.
"Another factor, especially as more and more participants request the use of classroom AV technology, is that the Congress takes place during WMU's first summer term, which means that the number of useful classroom spaces at our disposal varies from year to year, depending upon the summer class schedule. In the end, we hope to mount the best Congress we can each year, one that offers more than enough without taxing our facilities to the breaking point."
In a press release, Western Michigan University announced that local residents may attend the Congress for free if they register by Wednesday, April 28.
County residents and WMU community members may register online or in person at the Miller Auditorium ticket office at no charge. Those without Internet access may register by mail or fax for a nominal handling fee.
Anyone not taking advantage of the free online and in-person registration options may register after April 28, but they will be assessed a $50 late fee.
Click here to go to Congress website
Click here to go to Medievalists.net special section on the Congress
Source: Western Michigan University