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Conference presentation. "Fourteenth-century books for fifteenth-century audiences: 100 years of the Songe du viel pelerin"

Kristin Bourassa and Justin Sturgeon will be presenting on a manuscript of Philippe de Mézières' Songe at the Renaissance Society of America conference, 17 March 2019

Kristin Bourassa (CML) and Justin Sturgeon (University of West Florida) will be presenting at the 65th Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America.


Philippe de Mézières’s 1389 Songe du viel pelerin, a political allegory dedicated to Charles VI of France, achieved a level of popularity after the death of its author and its dedicatee that it never achieved within their lifetimes. The Songe was later copied for members of the secular and religious elite, in manuscripts adapted both textually and visually for their owners and for their new historical context. Eight of the nine surviving manuscripts date to the mid- to late-fifteenth century, demonstrating revived interest in a book whose understandings of authority, power, and counsel were deeply embedded in the historical context of its original production. This interdisciplinary paper explores how political texts were adapted for later audiences through a case study of the manuscript owned by Jacques d’Armagnac, duke of Nemours. This process reveals how Renaissance audiences conceived of and reinterpreted textual authority into contemporary paradigms of power and identity politics.

Editing was completed: 17.03.2019