CMRS website in process of migrating ...

All College of Arts & Sciences websites are migrating to a new platform. Please be patient as our new site is waiting in a queue to go live. 

Meanwhile, though -- there is this upcoming, very exciting symposium!

The Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies invites you to a symposium March 27 on “Visual Culture and the Early Book.” Four afternoon talks by University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University scholars will be followed by a reception at OU Libraries Special Collections, and then by a keynote talk from Dr. Michelle Brown, former Curator of Illuminated Manuscripts at the British Library, London. All events are free and open to the public. 

The talks by Drs. Bill Endres, Joyce Coleman, Jennifer Borland, and Kathleen Crowther (in Gould Hall Gallery, GH 130) will explore the interaction of image with text in medieval manuscripts and early printed books. The rise of the graphic novel has raised our awareness of the importance and impact of illustrations in books. Looking back to older time periods, images can help us understand how medieval and early modern people visualized the information provided by their books, plus the cultural meanings and relationships underlying that information. Such images range from intricate decorations on Gospel pages through depictions of authors and their patrons, on to medical and scientific texts.

The reception at OU Libraries Special Collections (5th floor Bizzell Library) will feature refreshments, as well as a special exhibition of three beautiful manuscript books of hours from the collection of Mr. and Mrs. James C. Meade.

The CMRS is especially delighted to host Michelle Brown as our keynote speaker (in Gould Hall 130). An engaging personality and a world-class scholar, Dr. Brown is Professor Emerita of Medieval Manuscript Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London; Visiting Professor at University College London and Baylor University; and Senior Researcher, University of Oslo. She was formerly Curator of Illuminated Manuscripts at the British Library. She has taught, broadcast, and published widely (over 30 books), as well as curated exhibitions on history, archeology, and medieval and modern art. She is now a freelance author / lecturer and a lay canon of Truro Cathedral. She lives in Cornwall, England, with her husband and rescue dogs.

Supported by generous funding from Mr. and Mrs. James C. Meade and the English and History of Science Departments, University of Oklahoma. For more information, and accommodations on the basis of disability, email


The Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies, a division of the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Oklahoma, promotes the study of the period in Western history that saw the development of such major components of modern life as parliamentary democracy, the nation-state, English and other modern languages, printing, Islam, global exploration, heliocentric astronomy, romantic love--and the universities in which we research and teach all these subjects.Some thirty-five faculty at OU contribute to the study of these and many other facets of the Middle Ages and Renaissance.
     Our newly revived Medieval & Renaissance Studies minor allows students to pursue an interdisciplinary study of literature, language, history, history of science, art, architecture, and religion, supported by visits to OU's Special Collections.
     By supporting our faculty and students, sponsoring brown-bag talks, and cosponsoring a free public lecture series with the Medieval Fair of Norman, OU’s Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies seeks to enrich the intellectual environment for medievalists and early modernists on campus and across the region. Other opportunities are in the works. Come join us!
     OU's CMRS was founded by Keith Busby, then of the university's Modern Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics Department. Prof. Busby was succeeded by Luis Cortest, of the same department. Since 2013 the director has been Joyce Coleman (, Bambas Professor of Medieval English Literature & Culture, English Department.