Utz Presents on Robin Hood as a Global Outlaw

Powerpoint slide from the "Bavaria's Robin Hood" presenation.

Posted December 9, 2021

Richard Utz, professor of medievalism studies in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication and associate dean for faculty development in Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts, presented a paper at the 13th Biennial Conference of the International Association for Robin Hood Studies. The virtual conference was hosted by Richmond American International University and the University of Hull from Dec. 3-5.

The paper, titled “Bavaria's Robin Hood,” focuses on the current status of Robin Hood, whose modest fictional origins are in medieval rural England, as a global super-signifier referenced by all other global outlaw stories. Utz further argues that the predominance of Robin Hood for outlaw narratives around the world demonstrates the predominance of Anglo-American economic, military, and cultural influence.

In the paper, Utz cites the case of Matthias Klostermayr, a well-known 18th-century Bavarian outlaw figure. The Klostermayr example shows that those who make the comparison with the English outlaw do not distinguish between the medieval, early modern, and modern iterations of the Robin Hood narrative. Instead, they use the super-outlaw's global reputation in an attempt to increase attention to a regional figure.

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