A Great Success
Symposium was a smashing success! Scholars
from more than 30 colleges and universities and from countries
around the world took part in the four-day event. Distinguished
lectures were delivered on the evenings of February 15, 16, and
17 by Jonathan Riley-Smith of Cambridge University, Carole Hillenbrand
of the University of Edinburgh, Jaroslav Folda of the University
of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, John France of the University
of Wales at Swansea, and Robert Hillenbrand of the University
of Edinburgh. They were attended by a large number of symposium
participants, students, faculty, and interested members of the
public. Although the lectures were held in the expansive Pere
Marquette Gallery, many were to standing-room-only crowds. Questions
and discussions after each lecture were especially interesting.
During Phase II of
the Symposium on Saturday, February 18, more than 40 scholarly
papers on all aspects of the crusading movement were delivered.
A high point of the day was the Special Plenary Session on Saint
Louis and the Crusades. Excellent papers by Caroline Smith of
Saint Louis University, M. Cecilia Gaposchkin of Dartmouth College,
and Michael Lower of the University of Minnesota were followed
by a stimulating comment delivered by William Chester Jordan of
Princeton University. In my opinion, it was one of the very best
sessions that I have ever attended -- and I know that I am not
alone in that judgment.
As the Symposium came
to a close over (appropriately enough) drinks and good food, I
received many requests to continue it as an annual event. Given
the extraordinary vibrancy of Crusade Studies , there is certainly
a need for it. However, because of the cost in money and time
that it takes to put on something of this magnitude, I fear that
it will be at least a few years before I will be in a position
to tackle it again. But I will tackle it.
My sincerest thanks
go to all of the participants of the Symposium, who truly made
it a rich banquet of intellectual fare. Thanks also go to SLU
graduate students, Walker Cosgrove, Adam Hoose, Christopher Lane,
Brendan McGuire, James Naus, Patrick O'Banion, David Parnell,
Joseph Reidy, and Vincent Ryan, who put in long hours making certain
that all ran smoothly. Finally, my thanks go to my Assistant,
Teresa Harvey, whose logistic expertise translated vague ideas
into solid reality.
Thomas F. Madden
Saint Louis University
P.S. For those interested,
the Symposium website can still be found here.
Publication of Symposium Papers
from the Symposium will be published in a volume, Crusades:
Medieval Worlds in Conflict, edited by Thomas F. Madden,
James Naus, and Vincent Ryan. All participants are welcome and
encouraged to submit essays for this volume.
If at all possible, essays should be submitted electronically
as an email attachment to email@example.com.
Notations should conform to the Speculum style, which
can be found here.
The deadline for
submissions is June 15, 2006.