This Academic Meetings seek to provide an interdisciplinary forum for the discussion of all aspects of medieval studies. Each Congress has one particular special thematic strand on an area of interdisciplinary study in a wider context.

Next Autumn the city of Nájera (La Rioja, Spain) will once again host the International Meetings of the Middle Ages, organized by the Medieval Research Group of the University of Cantabria, supported by the Town council of Nájera, Dirección General de Cultura de la Consejería de Desarrollo Económico e Innovación de La Rioja, Escuela de Patrimonio Histórico de Nájera, Instituto de Estudios Riojanos, University of Cantabria, Sociedad Espańola de Estudios Medievales, Instituto de Estudos Medievais de la Universidade Nova de Lisboa and the Government of Spain.


The international conference will take place in Nájera (Spain), from 8th to 9th November, 2018.


The topic of this year is about: The urban family: marriage, kinship and lineage in the Middle Ages


The main nuclear unit of the medieval city was the family. Solidarity within the family and the wider family structured urban society. Much research has already been done on how medieval kings, noblemen and court members have developed strategies to strengthen their families. It is true that the exact way in which families tried to extend their power, to maintain their networks, and their marriage policy within towns is much less the subject of study. However, it has already been shown that citizens, especially within their own family, are engaged in economic activities, although there were of course other institutions structuring the urban life, such as corporate associations, neighborhoods and the like. The social endogamy of urban elites has already been studied, certainly by means of prosopography, but the reasons why families were so successful to develop important lineages over the centuries are less known. Furthermore, ideological and spatial aspects of family life are understudied. Last but not least, gender issues can also be involved: not only father's will, but also the rationale why mothers agreed with them, and/or conflicts 
with children about family strategies are part of this topic.
The purpose of this year's Najera meeting is to bring together scholars, working on cities in different parts of Europe and within historiographical traditions, to consider how, why, with what success, and with what consequences, medieval urban families sought to reproduce themselves. What were their ideas and practices of succession? How did families respond to the prospects of extinction? How did they conceptualize ‘family’, ‘kinship’, and ‘lineage’? How far was the strength (or weakness) of kinship ties shaped by the definition and consciousness of lineage? Did elite strategies to build up social networks differ from those of lower class groups? Did social networks of families cross the town's borders? Do families concentrate their possessions (and houses) within one particular neighborhood? What do women want? Did they contest the patriarchic view on family life? 
Different perspectives for answering such questions are:
- Marriage strategies, and the practices to restrict free marriage choice of children
- Conflicts between families and factions 
- Social network analysis of urban families
- The cultural framework of kinship and ideas about lineage
- Urban space, and geographic concentration of families within the town, or across the city's borders 
- Gender history
- Living in common in the medieval family
- Family and kinship  estructures 
- The urban family In La Rioja


 This fascinating conference may be a good springboard to facilitate this goal.



Historians and Graduate students are encouraged to submit abstracts for research presentations or posters on topics related to "Exclusion and social discipline in the Medieval European City.

Abstracts should be no more than 500 characters and should clearly state the purpose, thesis, methodology, and principal findings of the paper to be presented. Successful proposals will be published in 2018. All abstracts and a short CV should be submitted electronically to Jesús Solórzano at: and Jelle Haemers

The deadline for submissions will be September 1th, 2018.


Spanish Society of Medieval Studies established a fund to support students participation and attendance in the Conference. The Conference Fund is available to all students, both undergraduate and graduate, who are looking for funding to attend a conference related to their academic or professional goals. The purpose of these grants is to encourage and assist student presentations at this academic conference related to his/her goals by off-setting the cost of lodging.


The application for grants is open to all students who meet the following:

• The student is in good academic standing

• The student has matriculated into a degree of Grade, Master or PhD.

• Good knowledge of modern languages


The languages of the meetings are Spanish, English, French, Italian and Portuguese.


Venue: Escuela de Patrimonio de Nájera. Plaza de Santa María. Nájera. Spain.




    Style and technical specifications


  • The monographic book will be published by the Instituto de Estudios Riojanos, an Spanish pretigious institute and publishing house, as well as holding an important share of the Latin America continent.  
  • Paper should be sent, please, before on  1st April 2019, in a format that is recognisable to Microsoft Word (.doc) in any of its versions for Windows.
  • The maximum length of manuscripts is 25 pages.
  • Double spacing should be used for all the paper except for the references which are to be single-spaced.
  • Times New Roman, normal style, 12-point type.
  • Footnotes or Notes, when necessary, are to be placed at the end of the page and numbered in their order of appearance in the text.
  • Illustrations (images, graphics...) are to be inserted in the appropriate point in the text.
  • All illustrations will be denominated generically Figures and are to be numbered consecutively using Arabic numerals with the title centred at the bottom.
  • Images must be in black and white with a quality of at least 300 ppp.
  • Images have to be sent in a separated files.
  • The title page should contain a concise and informative title, author’s name and full address of the institution, email address and current address.
  • The article will include an introduction and conclusions.


     Footnotes and citations  



a) Conference papers and communications or chapters of books:


 Benton,  J. R. “Clio and Venus: An Historical View of Medieval Love”,  Newman, E.X. (Ed.) The Meaning of Courtly Love. State University of New York Press, Albany, 1968: 19-42. 


b) Journal articles.

    Wicham, C. “Sobre la mutación socioeconómica de larga duración en Occidente durante los siglos V-VIII”, Studia Historica. Historia Medieval, 22, 2004: 17-32.


c) books

    Verbruggen, J.F. The Art of Warfare in Western Europe during the Middle Ages: from the Eighth Century to 1340. Boydell Press, Ámsterdam, 1977.



Jesús Angel Sólórzano Telechea
University of Cantabria
Edificio Interfacultativo. Av. de los Castros s/n. 39005.
Santander. Spain. EU. 
Phone: (0034) 942202015
Fax: (0034) 942201203
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