Signum Symposia

Signum Symposia

Signum Symposia comprise a collection of conversations across a wide range of topics appealing to both fans and scholars of literature. Episodes include chats with members of Signum's world class faculty, presentations by students in our Masters program and interviews with some of the leading lights in academic and popular circles. With a rich variety of topics and speakers, there is bound to be something here for everyone.

Episodes

December 12, 2019 109 min
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October 13, 2019 59 min
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September 26, 2019 82 min
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June 19, 2019 61 min
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November 12, 2018 76 min
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November 12, 2018 60 min
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A translator is not free: J. R. R. Tolkien’s Guidelines for Translation and Their Application in Sir Orfeo Curtis Weyant While bemoaning his struggles with translating the Middle English poem “Pearl,” Tolkien declared to his aunt, Jane Neave, that ‘a translator is not free”: but he neglected to delineate the specific rules by which he believed translators were shackled. Fortunately, elsewhere in his writings, Tolkien provides hin...
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Getting Sick of It: Narrative Functions of Sickness in Egils Saga Skallagrímssonar and Laxdæla Saga Laura Lee Smith Many characters die in the course of Egils Saga Skallagrímssonar and Laxdæla Saga, most from battle wounds or homicide, and some from old age or other natural causes. Characters may also take to their beds for various reasons, including grief. But in some instances, the narrator specifically reports that a character...
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The Bitter Watches of the Night: From Anne Elliot to Éowyn of Rohan—Crossing Frontiers from the Home front to the Battlefront Jennifer Ewing J. R. R. Tolkien is often accused of either not having enough female characters, or that those present are not as fully realized as his male characters. However, Tolkien’s keen understanding of the emotional challenges women face is revealed when we consider the surprising parallelism betwee...
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The composite authorship of Andreas David Maddock The Old English poem “Andreas” has long been a source of controversy in the Anglo-Saxon scholarly community. Although it bears no runic signature, scholars have noted significant stylistic similarities between “Andreas” and the four signed poems of Cynewulf, suggesting that they may share a common author. Others have cited affinities with Beowulf or grammatical differences from ...
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The Postmodern Kaleidoscope of London Below in Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere Chris Yokel In Neil Gaiman’s first novel Neverwhere, an ordinary Londoner named Richard Mayhew is ushered into the fantastical underworld of London Below when he helps the mysterious injured vagrant girl, Door. After crossing paths with her and getting caught up in her story, Richard must traverse the shadowy and dangerous realms of the London underworl...
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Tolkien’s Crossing of Revisionary Boundaries Chris Gavaler and Nathaniel Goldberg Some novelists revise their stories by restarting them. Others revise by revealing new things about them. Still others revise simply by continuing them. All of these kinds of revisions are common, but J.R.R. Tolkien crossed revisionary boundaries by engaging in all three simultaneously. In 1937 Tolkien published the first edition of The Hobbi...
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July 12, 2018 12 min
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