Upcoming Signum University and Mythgard Online Events (For Tolkien, Fantasy, SF, and Language Lovers)

Happy Friday dear friends! As regular readers will know, I teach at Signum University in their online MA program. Part of Signum’s culture is to have some local gatherings–moots, they are appropriately called, and now hybrid events for those who cannot draw near–as well as some free online events. Hobbit Day was the launch of our annual fall fundraiser, and so there are all kinds of great things going on. I thought I would take a moment to share these opportunities for you to connect and learn. You will gain much, and Signum’s mission for online, accessible, global-leading education in imaginative literature and Germanic philology is a worthy cause to support. And check out some “Don’t Miss This!” events below of other sorts (including a Emily of New Moon Round Table I am a part of tomorrow, and HutchMoot).

New England Moot 2021: Second Breakfast (Sep 25, 2021 in NH)

Please join us in Durham, NH on Saturday, September 25th (tomorrow) for scholarly papers, creative presentations, and fellowship.  We will consider nourishment for body, mind, and spirit all within the Signum University common interests of philology and imaginative & classic literature. This is a hybrid event with local and online activities. See here for registration details. And what a great theme!

Presentations begin close to 9:30am Eastern Daylight Saving time:

  • James Tauber – Counting Breakfasts: Text Analysis in Lord of the Rings
  • Rob McKenzie – The Enduring Attraction of The Pilgrim’s Progress
  • Sarah Anne Stinnett – The Gastronomic Delights of Shakespeare’s Dream: Food and Desire in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
  • Liam Bisesi – Second Breakfast
  • Corey Olsen – Fabulous Feasts: a consideration of the magnificent meals in British literature
  • Pilar Barrera Wey – Colour and Light in Tolkien’s The Hobbit: Home, Greed, and Hope
  • Mark Schennum – A Game of Connections: ‘The Wreck of the Hesperus’ / ‘Earendil was a Mariner’
  • Steve Melisi – Literary Second Breakfast: The Rewards of the Re-Read
  • Mickey Corso- The Lady and Our Lady: Galadriel as a ‘Reflexion’ of Mary
  • Kate Neville – Eärendil is not “The Morning Star.” Change my mind.  (#ChangeKatesMind)

Thesis Theater: Shawn Gaffney, “Hidden Contact: The Unremarkable Evidence of Brittonic and Latin Effects on English” (Sep 28, online)

Signum master’s student Shawn Gaffney will present his thesis “Hidden Contact: The Unremarkable Evidence of Brittonic and Latin Effects on English” and respond to questions from the audience in an interactive Thesis Theater. The discussion will be facilitated by Shawn’s thesis supervisor, Nelson Goering. Join us on Sep 28th at 10:00am Eastern by clicking here for details, including Shawn’s bio.

Thesis Abstract: At the beginning of the fifth century, the Anglo-Saxons arrived in Britain and within two centuries they had become a dominant presence throughout much of the island. They encountered the Romano-British and Romans, speaking Brittonic and Latin, but the presence of these two groups, their effects on culture and language, as well as their survival into later centuries are sometimes neglected in modern scholarship. Both peoples did not just disappear at the arrival of the invaders but instead interacted in ways that are still visible today, especially with respect to lexical items and place-names. Language contact theories suggest that instead of a lack of contact, these limitations of data demonstrate the specific effects of certain types of contact. Substrate languages can affect the dominant language through phonology and syntax while leaving the lexicon relatively unchanged. An understanding of how contact and substrate effects is crucial for understanding potential models of cultural contact between the disparate groups. These models demonstrate how the different groups could interact over the centuries and still present modern scholars with the perceived limitations of evidence.

MiddleMoot – Philology: Lover of Words, Friend of Words (Oct 9, 2021 in IA)

MiddleMoot 2021 will be held at Hawkeye Community College in Waterloo, Iowa, and is co-sponsored with Signum University, with support from the Tolkien Society of Iowa City, Smial of Avallónë. Our keynote speaker and guest-of-honor is Michael Drout, philologist and pre-eminent Tolkien scholar. We are also honored to have Corey Olsen, The Tolkien Professor and president of Signum University, in attendance. The theme of the conference is “Philology: Lover of Words, Friend of Words.” Come join us as we explore various aspects of the importance of language, linguistics, and philology among other topics in Tolkien’s work! Please be aware that the registration fee includes a hot lunch and access to all activities and materials associated with the conference. We plan to follow current (early October) CDC and Iowa public health guidance pertaining to mask-wearing and other pandemic-related protocols for indoor gatherings. For more details, including a Call for Papers and Presentations, see here.

TexMoot 2022 (Feb 12, 2022 in TX)

This is just a place-holder note, but you can watch this link for future details. Last year’s TexMoot–where I asked the question, “Is C.S. Lewis too Sexy for America?”, was a great day, and I am looking forward to this local/online hybrid conference day next Winter.

And the Full Details of the Signum University Annual Fund Campaign

This year’s campaign will take place between Wednesday, September 22, and Saturday, October 16, 2021. Besides events and broadcasts, there are gifts and prizes for donors. Check out the Annual Fund page for details.

9/22 Traditional Kick Off on Hobbit Day during our Mythgard Academy, The Nature of Middle-earth broadcast.

9/25 New England Moot: Second Breakfast
While this regional moot is not campaign focused, Corey will be talking a little about the campaign, and perhaps more importantly, giving away some prizes to attendees, both corporeal and virtual! Use this link to go to the event webpage and join in the fun!

10/2 Wigend Muscles through Mordor Marathon
Join Corey on our SignumU Twitch channel to watch him take Wigend through Mordor in LotRO. More prizes will be tossed about!

10/9 Middle Moot – Philology: Lover of Words, Friend of Words
Again, this regional moot is not campaign focused but Corey will have a few words to add and will be taking the opportunity to spread more thanks and gratitude in the form of prizes!

10/16 The Annual Webathon!
It will be a day-long blast, as usual. We have some delightful content planned for everyone as well as the annual State of the University address. The webathon will culminate in more LotRO shenanigans for those that didn’t get enough during the marathon.
We will be posting more details here soon, including the link to the webathon broadcast.
Don’t expect an early start as our fearless leader is rather vampiric in his daily sleep and work cycle.

Emily of New Moon Round Table (Sep 25th, online)

I don’t want you to miss tomorrow’s New England Moot–and I do wish I was there, since it is so close (just a 9 hour drive, what we call a short jaunt in my part of the world)–I would like to remind L.M. Montgomery fans that I am part of an Emily of New Moon Round Table conversation tomorrow (see here).

Hutchmoot: Homebound (Oct 8-10, online)

Also of note–and also aligning with other events and Canadian Thanksgiving–the wonderful folks at the Rabbit Room (including songwriter and storytelling brothers Andrew and Pete Peterson) are hosting another Hutchmoot: Homebound on Oct 8-10, totally accessible online, with talks and performances from our own (can I call them that?) Diana Glyer and Malcolm Guite, and other folks I love or admire for selfish reasons, like The Gray Havens, JJ Heller, Jerry Root, and Sho Baraka (and Walter Wangerin, Jr. is on the speaker’s list, though he sadly passed away a few weeks ago). Click here for tickets.

About Brenton Dickieson

“A Pilgrim in Narnia” is a blog project in reading and talking about the work of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, and the worlds they touched. As a "Faith, Fantasy, and Fiction" blog, we cover topics like children’s literature, apologetics and philosophy, myths and mythology, fantasy, theology, cultural critique, art and writing. This blog includes my thoughts as I read through Lewis and Tolkien and reflect on my own life and culture. In this sense, I am a Pilgrim in Narnia--or Middle Earth, or Fairyland. I am often peeking inside of wardrobes, looking for magic bricks in urban alleys, or rooting through yard sale boxes for old rings. If something here captures your imagination, leave a comment, “like” a post, share with your friends, or sign up to receive Narnian Pilgrim posts in your email box. Brenton Dickieson is a father, husband, friend, university lecturer, and freelance writer from Prince Edward Island, Canada. You can follow him on Twitter, @BrentonDana.
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