2020 ACMRS Conference Call for Papers: Unfreedom

February 7–8, 2020, on the campus of Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona

Unfreedom marked the lives of various people in the premodern world. Many factors played a role in shaping the forms of unfreedom prevalent in the premodern era: violence and coercion; shame and dishonor; disconnection of kin groups and destruction of social networks; and individual and collective strategies for economic, political, and social success that depended on the subjection of others.

This year’s conference will focus on those whose status was defined primarily in terms of unfreedom, coercion, and constraint rather than the enjoyment of freedoms or privileges, including but not limited to slaves, serfs, captives, prisoners, pledges, hostages, and forced marriage or concubinage.

We welcome panels and papers that theorize and/or historicize the status of unfreedom in medieval and renaissance contexts.


Proposals will be accepted on a rolling basis until midnight, Mountain Standard Time on November 30, 2019

Submissions are no longer being accepted

Information for presenters

All sessions (panels, roundtables, workshops, etc.) are 90 minutes long. In order to maximize conversation and collaboration, sessions should be comprised of three to five 10-minute, individual presentations of new, cutting-edge work followed by discussion.

Conference program and selection committee

  • Hannah Barker, Arizona State University
  • Ryan A. Kashanipour, Northern Arizona University
  • Bradley J. Ryner, Arizona State University
  • Juliann Vitullo, Arizona State University