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20 April, 2011

Essays in Journals


  • "Medievalism: Key Critical Terms: Another Response to Richard Trachsler." Revue Critique de la Philologie Romane 17 (2016): 160-65. [with E. Emery; forthcoming]
  • "Medievalism: A Critical History: A Response," Práticas da História. Journal on Theory, Historiography and Uses of the Past 3 (2016): 155-61.
  • "Residual Medievalisms: Historical Pageants in Eastern Bavaria," The Year's Work in Medievalism 31 (2016): 75-81.
  • "Jürgen Lodemann's Neo-Nibelungs," postmedieval 7:2 (2016): 289-92.
  • "Medievalism and the Subject of Religion." Studies in Medievalism 24 (2015): 11-19. Assesses the reasons for the relative disregard for the study of the continuity of religious thought and faith by scholarship in Medievalism Studies over the last 25 years. Postulates that medievalism scholars have an ethical obligation to investigate and historicize religion and theology, at least in its temporal manifestations.
  • "'A clerk ther was of Rowan County also….' What the Kim Davis Case Tells Us About America’s Long Middle Ages." medievalists.net; and in The Medieval Magazine 32 (8 September 15): 36-8.
  • "Medievalism's Lexicon: Preliminary Considerations." Perspicuitas (2014).
  • "Can We Talk About Religion, Please? Medievalism’s Eschewal of Religion, and Why It Matters." The Year's Work in Medievalism 28 (2013) [pubd. 2014]
  • Quo vadis, English Studies? Philologie im Netz 69 (2014): 93–100. 
  • "The Good Corporation? Google's Medievalism and Why It Matters." Studies in Medievalism 23 (2013): 21-28. 
  • "Coming to Terms with Medievalism: Toward a Conceptual History." European Journal of English Studies 15.2 (2011): 101-13. Richard Utz's contribution to the collection, “Coming to Terms with Medievalism,” serves as a kind of second introduction, one that contextualizes medievalism historically, temporally, linguistically, and theoretically. Utz argues that the term “medievalism” is a kind of  “...linguistic performance responding to particular pressures in and outside the academy as well as to the almost coeval emergence of competing terms and practices related to the study of the past” (p. 103-4). He describes the well-known split between academic ‘Medieval Studies’ and non-academic ‘medievalism’ which, though it was invented by nineteenth-century scholars, persists today. Utz adds an important distinction, however: that the boundary is temporal in nature, a division between “…academic pastist research of the ‘real’ Middle Ages and the various non-academic presentist representations of the medieval past” (p. 104, original emphasis). In other words, Utz argues, this often artificial distinction is about perceived distance. Scholars whose ‘medievalism’ comes too close to touching a past prized for its alterity are rendered academically suspect. Utz’s essay also traces the efforts of Studies in Medievalism founder Leslie J. Workman to make medievalism “an independent academic area of study”; this history, one suspects, is an effort to preserve and protect Workman’s legacy in the face of medievalism’s new popularity, for as Utz points out, previous scholars who have become enamored by the promise of a ‘New Medievalism’ “...maintained their academic aloofness towards Workman's Studies in Medievalism movement and rather attempted to operationalize the term as a weapon for transforming academic Medieval Studies according to their own progressive self-image” (p. 107). Despite his cautious historicization, Utz, like the editors, ultimately is optimistic about the fact that “hundreds of scholars have now embraced medievalism as the term that provides them with the creative space in which scholarly rigor and enjoyment, educational experience and emotion, may bridge the rigid alterity between the two non-contiguous historical moments” (p. 109). Amy Kaufman, Medievally Speaking (2012)
  • "Them Philologists: Philological Practices and Their Discontents from Nietzsche to Cerquiglini." The Year’s Work in Medievalism (2011): 4-12.
  • "Negotiating Heritage: Observations on Semantic Concepts, Temporality, and the Centre of the Study of the Cultural Heritage of Medieval Rituals," Philologie im Netz 58 (2011): 70-87. Abstract: This essay is a revised version of a paper originally presented at the "Fifth Conference on the Cultural Heritage of Medieval Rituals" at University of Copenhagen on October 26, 2009. It seeks to review the interdisciplinary scholarship done by the Centre of the Study of the Cultural Heritage of Medieval Rituals, a project funded by the Danish National Research Foundation since 2001, from the perspective of Reinhart Kosellek's work on semantic concepts and temporality, focusing specifically on a recent Centre publication: Negotiating Heritage: Memories of the Middle Ages, edited by Mette B. Bruun and Stephanie Glaser as volume 4 in Brepols Publishers' book series, Ritus et Artes: Traditions and Transformations (2009). By bringing the "father" of conceptual historiography to bear on some of the scholarship in Negotiating Heritage, the essay contributes to tracing, from a meta-perspective, the momentous mutations through which Western societies and their scholars continue to conceive their experiences of the medieval past.
  • "Pi(o)us Medievalism vs. Catholic Modernism: The Case of George Tyrell.” The Year’s Work in Medievalism (2010): 6-11.
  • “The Colony Writes Back: F.N. Robinson’s Complete Works of Geoffrey Chaucer (1933) and the Translatio of Chaucer Studies to the United States.” Studies in Medievalism 19 (2010): 160-203. Richard Utz discusses the significance of Robinson’s 1933 edition of Chaucer’s Works in the context of the transformation of medieval studies more generally. Robinson’s volume, Utz argues, initiates a shift in the national centre of Chaucerian studies away from Germany and towards the United States. The Complete Works, his essay suggests, reflects the American pragmatism and emphasis on ‘facts’ and, importantly, American scholars’ self-assertion against German scientistic philology. Jessica Barr and Katharine W. Jager, Year's Work in English Studies 90.1 (2011), p. 179.
  • Medievalitas Fugit: Medievalism and Temporality.” Studies in Medievalism 18 (2009): 31-43.
  • “Medieval Philology and Nationalism: The British and German Editors of Thomas of Erceldoune.Florilegium: Journal of the Canadian Society of Medievalists/Société canadienne des médiévistes 23.2 (2006 [2008]): 27-45. Abstract: The reception of the late fourteenth-century romance/lay/ballad Thomas of Erceldoune by romantic enthusiasts, antiquarians, modernist philologists, and twentieth-century medievalists reveals the dangerous indebtedness of a quasi-sciencific medieval philology to competing national paradigmatic constructions (German, English, Scottish) on the one hand and the ongoing foundational value of philological work for current medieval textual scholarship on the other. Thus, while debunking the disinterestedness claimed by modernist philology, the essay attests to the enduring success of philological editorial practice regarding this specific late medieval poem.
  • "The Chameleon Principle: Reflections on the Status of Arthurian Studies in the Academy," Arthuriana 17.4 (2007), 111-13.
  • “‘There Are Places I Remember’: Situating the Medieval Past in Postmedieval Cultural Memories.” Transfiguration: Nordisk Tidsskrift for Kunst og Kristendom 6.2 (2004 [2007]): 89-108.
  • “Medieval Scholarship in Englische Studien, Part I: Eugen Kölbing and the Foundational Period (1877-1899).” Erfurt Electronic Studies in English 12 (2006). 77pp. [text; bibliography]
  • Chaucer and the Discourse of German Philology: An Addendum.” Perspicuitas (2004).
  • “Hic iacet Arthurus? Situating the Medieval King in Renaissance Memory.” Studies in Medievalism 15 (2006): 26-40. "Richard Utz then takes up the afterlife of the Arthurian myth in ‘Hic iacet Arthurus?: Situating theMedieval King in English Renaissance Memory’. Opening with some explicit consideration of the workings of national commemoration, Utz proceeds to the Renaissance reception of Arthur, showing, with particular reference to Drayton’s Poly- Olbion, that Arthur was by no means so uniformly written off as a serious subject in the period as has often been said." David Matthews, Review of English Studies (2008)
  • “Will it Do to Say Anything More About Chaucer.” North American Review 291.6 (Nov./Dec. 2006): 50.   
  • “‘Mes souvenirs sont peut-être reconstruits’: Medieval Studies, Medievalism, and the Scholarly and Popular Memories of the ‘Right of the Lord’s First Night.’” Philologie im Netz 31 (2005): 49-59.   
  • “Medieval Nominalism and the Literary Questions: Selected Studies.” (with Terry Barakat), Perspicuitas (2004).
  • “Medievalism and Literature: An Annotated Bibliography of Critical Studies.” (with Aneta Dygon), Perspicuitas (2002).   
  • “When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth: A Short History of German Chaucerphilologie in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century.” Philologie im Netz 21 (2002): 54-62. "Richard Utz also offers a more generalized survey of German academia in his article ‘When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth: A Short History of German Chaucerphilologie in the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century’ (PhiN 21[2002] 54–62). He charts German disdain for those untrained in philology and textual criticism, and the prolific work of German scholars in editing early English texts. He also notes that the very success of philological methodology in Germany led to its eventual downfall: postwar British and American scholars abandoned this mode of research precisely because of its German associations." Valerie Allen and Margaret Connolly, The Year's Work in English Studies (2004)  
  • “Enthusiast or Philologist? Professional Discourse and the Medievalism of Frederick James Furnivall.” Studies in Medievalism 11 (2001): 189-211.
  • “The Medieval Cathedral: From Spiritual Site to National Super-Signifier.” The Year's Work in Medievalism 15 (2001): 73-82.
  • “Medievalism in the Making: A Bibliography of Leslie J. Workman.” The Year's Work in Medievalism 15 (2001): 127-31.
  • “The Medieval Myth of Jewish Ritual Murder: Toward a History of Reception.” The Year's Work in Medievalism 14 (2000): 23-36.   
  • “‘The Dead Are All Just Names Now’: Jeffrey Harrisons Gedicht ‘Reflection on the Vietnam War Memorial’ als Einstieg in die USamerikanische Vietnamproblematik im Englischunterricht.” Fremdsprachenunterricht 52.4 (1999): 175-78. "Für die traumatisierende Erfahrung des Vietnamkrieges und seine Auswirkungen auf die Psyche der amerikanischen Bevölkerung können Schüler am besten anhand des Vietnamdenkmals sensibilisiert werden, welches im Laufe seiner Geschichte Gegenstand einer starken Mythisierung und Sentimentalisierung wurde. Mittels des Gedichtes von Jeffrey Harrison, das als Meinungsäußerung zu dem Kult um dieses spezifisch amerikanische Denkmal zu verstehen ist, kann im Unterricht über den Wert, die Wirkung und die gesellschaftliche Relevanz solcher Gedächtnisorte diskutiert werden. Der Beitrag, enthält neben einer Gedichtinterpretation ergänzende Materialien zur Gestaltung einer entsprechenden Unterrichtseinheit." Fachportal Pädagogik 
  • “Transubstantiation in Medieval and Early Modern Culture and Literature: An Introductory Bibliography of Critical Studies.” Disputatio 3 (1998): 236-55 (with Christine Baatz). 
  • “Contesting the Critical Site: Philology, Mittelalter-Rezeption, and Mediävalismus in Germany.” The Year's Work in Medievalism 10 (1999): 239-43.  
  • Sic et Non: Zu Funktion und Epistemologie des Sprichwortes bei Geoffrey Chaucer.” Das Mittelalter: Perspektiven mediävistischer Forschung 2.2 (1997): 31-43.   
  • “Inventing German(ic) Chaucer: The Interplay of Ideology and Philology in German Chaucer Studies.” Studies in Medievalism 8 (1997): 5-27. "Some excellent articles address important and sometimes disturbing examples of the political dimensions of interest in the medieval past. One is [...] Richard J. Utz’s incisive and troubling account of the invention of a German(ic) Chaucer, born out of the interplay of philological positivism and national/ racist ideology." Carolyn P. Collette, Modern Language Review (2000); "Utz’s compelling narrative of the fabrication of a Germanic Chaucer, whose native Aryan roots had to be discovered by a rigorous philological study of his language use, tells the story of a nationally divided reading of the medieval past, Germanic versus Romantic, in terms that are also implicitly gendered. Where the Germanic Chaucer is authentic and 'manly,' the French Chaucer is too concerned (like an unsubstantial woman) with outward appearance and fashion. Elizabeth Scala, "The Gender of Historicism" (2009); - "Some years after Saintsbury, in a book that remains 'cherished today as one of the classical investigations in Chaucer scholarship,' we find an unsettling complicity of academic work on the 'father' of English poetry in prewar German national ideology (Utz, 'Inventing,' 16). As Richard Utz recently has demonstrated, Will Héra[u]court's Die Wertwelt Chaucers (1939) adopts a nationalspychologische Methode ('national-psychological method') that was mutually constitutive with the ideological objectives of the Third Reich. In Die Wertwelt, the German philologist mainains that Chaucer displays a preference for German over Romance words in his literary oeuvre. As found in such works as The Canterbury Tales and The Legend of Good Women, these 'German expressions signify the hereditary, but always freshly lived and realistically-felt paternal property, the healthy, living power of the people,' according to Héra[u]court [...]. Despite 'the French tendrils' of a Romance courtly lexicon, 'the basic stock (Grundstamm) of ethical notions of German(ic) origin' are strong enough to challenge the exclusivity of the nobility with 'signs of an awakening national spirit' [...] As Utz's decision to translate stamm as not 'trunk' but 'stock' suggests, the botanic and arboreal metaphors typical of philology are put, unsurprisingly, in the service of racial nationalism in Héra[u]court's work [...]. The additional definitions of stamm as tribe, clan, and above all blood complement Héra[u]court's claim elsewhere in Die Wertwelt Chaucers that Chaucer's blut or blood enables the representation of a Volksideal or national ideal in his literary corpus." Kathy Lavezzo, Imagining a Medieval English Nation (2004). "Some excellent articles address important and at times disturbing examples of the political dimensions of interest in the medieval past. One is [...] Richard J. Utz's incisive and troubling account of 'the invention of a German(ic) Chaucer.'" Carolyn P. Collette, Modern Language Review 95.2 (2000), 466.
  •  “Literary Nominalism in Chaucer's Late Medieval England.” The European Legacy: Toward New Paradigms 2.2 (1997): 206-11.
  • “‘For all that comth, comth by necessitee.’ Chaucer's Critique of Fourteenth-Century Boethianism in Troilus and Criseyde IV, 957-958.” Arbeiten aus Anglistik und Amerikanistik 21 (1996): 29-32.   
  • “Letter Writing in the Late Middle Ages: An Introductory Bibliography of Critical Studies.” Disputatio 1 (1996): 191-221 (with Janet Luehring). "Janet Luehring and Richard J. Utz’s final comprehensive bibliography copes with the rhetorical studies at large and the epistolographic ones in particular, emphasises the rhetorical and thematic aspects as well as its relevance in all the European cultures, and includes such out-of-hand places like eastern countries and Russia. The temporal spectrum analysed is rather wide, covering a span of time from the twelfth until the sixteenth century, and so, we should not talk of uniformity but rather of a process in which we still need to explain the role played by adjacent cultural worlds, besides the Classic, that flowed into European mainland in the Middle Ages, the Christian, the Jewish and the Arab -not to forget the 'Andalusí heritage'- worlds." José María Gutiérrez & Ricardo Sola Buil, SELIM: Revista de la Sociedad Española de Lengua y Literatura Inglesa Medieval (2007)
  • “Nominalist Perspectives on Chaucer's Poetry: A Bibliographical Essay.” Medievalia et Humanistica, N.S. 20 (1993): 147-73 (with William H. Watts). 
  • “Mutiny in the Melting Pot: Multiculturalism and the Re-Discovery of Columbus.” Fremdsprachenunterricht 46.7 (Oct. 1993): 421-25. 
  • “Medievalism as Modernism: Alfred Andersch's Nominalist Littérature Engagée.” Studies in Medievalism 6 (1993): 76-91. 
  • “Typisch--Stereotypisch: Zur Darstellung von Mann und Frau in Lehrwerken des Englischen.” Fremdsprachenunterricht 45.5 (May/June, 1992): 233-36. "Der Autor stellt fest, dass trotz der Erfolge der Frauenrechtsbewegung, vor allem in den Vereinigten Staaten, Sprachlehrwerke noch immer laengst ueberkommene Klischéevorstellungen der Frauen(rolle) als Vehikel fuer Sprachuebungen und erste landeskundliche Informationen benutzten. Er belegt diese These anhand ausgewaehlter Beispiele aus gaengigen "textbooks", wobei "exclusion", "subordination", "distortion" und "degredation" der Frauen als Analysekriterium zugrundegelegt werden, da sich diese Kategorien in den meisten Studien bewaehrt haben. Lehrwerke, die sich darum bemuehen, Frauen und Maennern inhaltlich und sprachlich den gleichen Raum einzuraeumen, stellen sich als Ausnahmeerscheinungen heraus." Fachportal Pädagogik