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Standardization in the Middle Ages

How did medieval people envision and enforce ideals of predictability, uniformity and order?

Image may contain: Textile, Sleeve, Gesture, Art, Painting.

Initial "C". Breviary, c. 1420, Italy. Getty Museum, Los Angeles, MS 24, fol. 3v (Open content policy)

“Standardization” is a term usually applied in industry, technology and business. However, it is also a vital feature in much human interaction. The papers of this multidisciplinary conference interrogate from various angles and materials the historical, social, and cognitive processes related to standardization in medieval societies. The conference has a double scope:

1.           To explore how medieval institutions and individuals attempted to obtain and maintain standards across vast distances and heterogeneous social structures.

2.           To develop the theoretical term “standardization” in a tight multidisciplinary collaboration, emphasizing that standards involve both flexibility and force, resistance and silencing, cognition and materiality.


We wish to welcome interested scholars but have limited space in the conference room. Please contact Kristin Bliksrud Aavitsland if you wish to participate in any of the sessions or days. 


Line Cecilie Engh og Kristin B. Aavitsland
Tags: Art History, Intellectual history, History of ideas, Church History, Middle Ages
Published May 17, 2022 4:24 PM - Last modified May 17, 2022 4:24 PM