Heide Estes, Ph.D., professor of English, will present “Ecocriticism, Disability, and the Beowulf Manuscript” as a hybrid lecture in the Rossell Hope Robbins Library at the University of Rochester on April 15 at 3 p.m. The talk is also available via Zoom, but advanced registration is required.
Estes will explore how reading from a perspective of ecocriticism combined with disability studies leads to new insights about early medieval texts including Beowulf, Wonders of the East, and The Letter of Alexander to Aristotle. This critical lens helps see how racialized others and animal-human hybrids are together marginalized in text and on medieval maps, and leads us to understand how concepts of the ‘wilderness,’ the ‘abnormal,’ the ‘disabled’ or the ‘human’ are subject to tremendous cultural variation.
The event is co-sponsored by the Medieval and Early Modern Studies Cluster, the Rossell Hope Robbins Library, and the University of Rochester Department of English.
Estes is a life member of Clare Hall, University of Cambridge. She is the editor, with Michael J. Warren and Ilse Schweizer VanDonkelaar, of the new journal, “Medieval Ecocriticisms,” and the author of “Anglo-Saxon Literary Landscapes: Ecotheory and the Environmental Imagination” and, with Nicole Guenther Discenza, of “Writing the World in Early Medieval England,” to be published by Cambridge University Press.