In recent years belonging has become an increasingly important concept in historical research. As a socially constructed category which revolves around an individual’s inclusion and exclusion from formal and informal groups, belonging has the potential to be a useful conceptual tool within the scholarship of late medieval urban centres. Indeed, late medieval cities were environments with many formal and informal groups to which people could belong, such as street communities, parishes, guilds and the citizenry, to name a few. Belonging can be thought of, and applied, in different ways and it is the aim of the conference to explore how these different ideas of belonging might be utilised in the study of late medieval cities. The conference will provide a forum in which both early career researchers and established academics can discuss which ideas of belonging are of use, and which are problematic, in the
study of medieval urban centres.

The papers have been carefully chosen so that the conference showcases research regarding an array of geographical areas, with the aim that this will foster discussion between delegates concerning the parallels and differences in the mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion within different urban contexts. The scholars who will present are experts in different types of source material, and their expertise will enable the conference to address one of its underpinning questions concerning which sources can be used in the study of belonging. The organisers have also sought the input of researchers who study belonging in different time periods and within different disciplines. The contribution of historians who have used sociological concepts of belonging in their research in non-medieval time periods will also help ensure that delegates are able to draw upon ways of thinking about belonging that they might not encounter within their own fields of study. As well as considering the application of belonging within current research, the conference will consider its potential future use in medieval scholarship. Indeed, the last day of the conference revolves around two workshops concerning the source material that can be used to study belonging within late medieval urban centres and how ideas of belonging might be used in future scholarship.

There are bursaries available for unwaged students or ECR's to cover registration fees. If you wish to be considered for this bursary, please send a short explanation as to how the conference theme fits your research interests to Joshua Ravenhill ([email protected])

Friday 28th June

9:30-10:00 Registration and Coffee

10:00-11:15 Panel 1: Informal Communities

  • Belonging Beyond the Walls of Fifteenth Century London; Charlotte Berry (PhD, Institute of Historical Research, London)
  • Neighbours and Belonging in Late Medieval Urban England; Kirstin Bernard (PhD Candidate in Medieval History, University of York)
  • A Small Town Community: Strategies of Inclusion in Monastic Towns of South East England; Anna Anisimova (Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, Institute of World History, Russian Academy of Science)

11:15-12:30 Panel 2: The Urban Elite and the Criteria of Inclusion

  • Becoming a ‘miseur’ in Nantes in the Late Middle Ages: Serving the Urban Community, Serving the Prince, Belonging to the City; Aurore Denmat Leon (PhD Candidate, University of Sorbonne)
  • When is a Burgess not a Burgess? The merchant-artificer divide in late medieval; Lynn Susan Maddock (Honorary Research Fellow, University of East Anglia, Ex-Principal Archivist at the Norfolk Record Office)
  • From Commune to a City of Individual Burghers: The Example of Tournai in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Century; Leen Bervoets (PhD Candidate, University of Ghent)

12:30-13:15 Panel 3: Sociological Ideas of Belonging in Historical Analysis

Sociological Ideas of Belonging as a Tool in Historical Scholarship; Levke Harders (Assistant Professor in Modern and Gender History, University of Bielefeld)
Respondent: Joshua Ravenhill (PhD Candidate in Medieval History, University of York)

13:15-14:15 Lunch

14:15-15:30 Panel 4: Political Exclusion

  • “Ob ipsius contumaciam habitum pro confesso.” Reflections Over the Evolution of the Florentine Political Banishment (1267-1302); Francesco Barbarulo (PhD Candidate, Universities of Triest and Udin)
  • “The Confraternity of the outstanding ones”: Urbanization and the Creation of a Criminal Underworld in the Islamic East, 945-1300; Margaret Helen Freeman (MA student, University of Copenhagen)
  • Assaults on Merchants in the Fifteenth Century Balkans - The cases of Dinos Kavalaropos and Victus Vlatković; Robin Shields (PhD Candidate, Royal Holloway University of London)

15:30- 16:45 Panel 5: Aliens and Belonging in Late Medieval England

  • Multiple Positions of Belonging: Belonging and the Alien Experience in Late Medieval England; Joshua Ravenhill (PhD Candidate in Medieval History, University of York)
  • Citizenry and Nationality: Immigrants and Political Belonging in Late Medieval English Cities; Bart Lambert (Assistant Professor of History, Vrije Universiteit Brussel)
  • “’The Ballad of John Baptist Grimaldi’: Sex and Corruption in anti-Italian rhetoric in early Tudor London”: Shannon McSheffrey (Professor of History, Concordia University)

Respondent: Mark Ormrod (Emeritus Professor, University of York)

16:45-17:30 Refreshments

17:30 Members of the public start arriving for keynote lecture

18:00-19:00 Keynote Lecture

Masculinities and the Emergence of Public Politics in Late Medieval England: A Sketch 
Chris Fletcher (Assistant Research Professor, Charge de recherche Centre national de la recherche scientifique, University of Lille)

Saturday 29th June

10:00-10:30 Refreshments

10:30-12:05 Panel 1: Media of Belonging I

  • Law, Identity, and Belonging: The Urban Law Books of Fourteenth-Century Silesia; Sébastien Rossignol (Assistant Professor, Memorial University of Newfoundland)
  • God and the City. Mendicant Orders’ Belonging in the Urban Communities of Medieval Auvergne; Claire Bourguignon (PhD Candidate, Universitie Clermont Auvergne)
  • Fifteenth Century London Custumals and Belonging; Alison Harper (PhD Candidate, University of Rochester)
  • “For Nyeupoort we want to fight”: Popular Song as a Source for Urban Belonging; Linde Nuyts (PhD Candidate, Ghent University)

12:05-13:00 Panel 2: Media of Belonging II

‘The Citigen Project: Material Culture and Belonging in the Later Medieval City’

A joint presentation by Sarah Rees Jones (Professor of Medieval History, Director of the Centre for Medieval Studies, University of York) and Stefania Merlo Perring (Research Associate on the CitiGen project, funded by HERA, University of York). This presentation will focus on their joint work carried out with the Museum of London.

13:00- 13:45 Lunch

13:45-15:00 Roundtable: The Sources and Future Applications of Belonging

Led by Assistant Research Professor Chris Fletcher (Charge de recherche Centre national de la recherche scientifique, University of Lille). An examination of the kinds of source material that can be used to understand belonging in late medieval urban contexts. The latter end of the workshop will allow attendees to discuss the potential future applications of belonging within studies of late medieval cities.

15:00-15:30 Comfort Break and members of the public arrive for keynote lecture

15:30-16:30 Keynote Lecture

Belonging and Not Belonging in Early Tudor London: Immigrant Artisans and the Evil May Day Riot of 1517
Shannon McSheffrey (Professor of History, Concordia University)