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2021 Marco Symposium

17th Annual Symposium

“Visions of the End: Medieval & Renaissance Apocalyptic Cultures”

March 5-7, 2021


Visions of the EndThe Marco Institute’s 17th annual (virtual) symposium explored apocalyptic themes. During the course of three days, eleven leading scholar discussed medieval and Renaissance responses to the Book of Revelation written by John of Patmos and the end-times he predicted. During the virtual sessions, scholars working in the disciplines of art history, history, literary studies, and religious studies presented their current research on the celestial visions and the millennial fears of pre-modern times.

The “Visions of the End” Symposium was hosted by the Marco Institute for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Additional support comes from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation and the UT Office of Research SARIF Scholarly Projects Fund.

Program Information:

A PDF of the full program is available here.

Keynote Lecture: 

Headshot of Richard EmmersonRichard Emmerson 
Florida State University

“The Apocalypse of the Duc de Berry and the Apocalyptic Great Schism”

View the keynote lecture online on Facebook or Vimeo. Click here to view Professor Emmerson’s Power Point slides.


Other Featured Speakers:

  • Robert Bast, University of Tennessee, Knoxville
    “Prophecy as Policy: Maximilian I as Last World Emperor in Theory and Practice”
  • Kathryne Beebe, University of North Texas
    Gender of the Apocalypse in the Late-Medieval Pilgrimage Works of Felix Fabri
  • Jennifer Feltman, University of Alabama
    “Ecclesiology and Typology in the Apocalypse Sculptures of Reims Cathedral”
  • Mayte Green-Mercado, Rutgers University, Newark
    Prophecy as Diplomacy in the Fifteenth-Century Mediterranean
  • Jennifer Jahner, California Institute of Technology
    Apocalypse Unfurled: End-Times Management from Codex to Roll
  • Benjamin Saltzman, University of Chicago
    “Enigmas Near the End”
  • Stephen Shoemaker, University of Oregon
    “The Apocalypse of Ps.-Shenoute: Imperial Apocalypticism and Early Islamic Jerusalem”            
  • Laura Ackerman Smoller, University of Rochester
    Reading the End in Late Medieval Augsburg:  Wolfgang Aytinger’s Commentary on the Revelations of Pseudo-Methodius
  • Brett Whalen, University of North Carolina
    “The End Times and the Medieval Cosmos”
  • Roger Wieck, Morgan Library and Museum
    “Visions of the Beginning:  The Parliament of Heaven”

About the annual Marco Symposium

The 2021 Symposium was originally scheduled for spring 2020, but was postponed to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Marco Symposium is held every year in March or April. The Symposium brings leading experts in their field to the University of Tennessee for two days of talks on that year’s theme. A round-table discussion by all the participants concludes the weekend.

The Symposium is Marco’s signature event of the year, and typically attracts members of the larger Knoxville community in addition to students and faculty at UT and scholars from across the region. The theme of the Symposium changes each year. Faculty who are interested in submitting a proposal should contact