Clemens Gantner, Peter Fraundorfer
In the course of 2019, the Institute for Medieval Research has been involved in the production of a comic book on a medieval topic, called ‘Emma, stell dir vor…’ (‘Emma, just imagine…’).
The book was produced in the course of the Austrian Academy of Sciences’ Comic Contest. It is one of four winning comics that help make research carried out at various institutes of the Academy accessible for a young audience – and older comic readers!
On 6 November 2019, the Institute accordingly took part at the ‘Tag des Comics’ (Comic book day) held in the main building of the Austrian Academy. At this occasion, over 300 schoolchildren between the age of eight and fourteen from schools all over Austria visited the Academy. There they witnessed the award ceremony for the four comic books that had been produced, and had the opportunity to get an insight into the research activity of the institutes involved.
Peter Fraundorfer, Christine Glaßner, Bernhard Koschicek, Krystina Kubina, Ekaterini Mitsiou, Veronika Polloczek, Maria Stieglecker, Sandra Wabnitz, and Clemens Gantner organized an entertaining and informative presentation of several aspects of the research conducted at the Institute for Medieval Research. The main topics presented were Identity Research (‘Who is who in the Middle Ages?’), Byzantine princesses travelling all the way from Constantinople to Austria and central Europe and the production of books in medieval times. The children could try out their own writing and drawing skills with genuine goosequills, using medieval scripts. They also had the chance to try on helmets in high and late medieval designs, and marvel at the handcrafted armour presented by Peter and Bernhard.
Overall, the Institute presented approachable research that visibly fascinated the Academy’s young guests.