Seminar Series at UK Universities
These are seminars run by UK universities. They are not organised by the Society.
Conferences, Lectures & Calls for Papers (UK)
Late Antique Archaeology 2018: Burial and Memorial in Late Antiquity
17 March 2018, Birkbeck College, London
This conference reviews the state of late antique funerary practices, on a thematic basis, from scientific examinations of skeletons and their DNA, to treatments of the deceased body, to the nature of memorial structures and how they were treated over time.
All are welcome. Admission 25 GBP, 10 GBP Students. Registration is via Eventbrite: laaburial2018.eventbrite.co.uk
Venue: Room 421 inside Birkbeck College, Malet Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7HX. Metro: Russell Square.
Seventh Century Syrian Numismatic Round Table
Conference/Call for papers
6-7 April 2019, Worcester
The Round Table aims to bring together numismatists, historians and archaeologist with an interest in Late Antiquity/Early Islam in Syria/Palestine and the surrounding area. We hold small informal conferences at roughly two yearly intervals which usually include at least ten papers with plenty of time allowed for discussion. The central focus is the Syrian Arab-Byzantine coinage, but papers can cover Byzantine or Post-Reform Umayyad coinage, or deal with aspects of the history or archaeology of Syria/Palestine. Papers sometimes present completed pieces of research, but more often they deal with ‘work in progress’.
If you are interested in presenting a paper (or would just like more information about the conference) please contact Tony Goodwin on firstname.lastname@example.org. Presentations should normally last no more than 40 minutes, but much shorter papers are equally acceptable. A short abstract will be circulated before the conference and the papers will be published in full in the conference proceedings.
Space and Dimension in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
23-24 February 2018, University of Oxford
The full programme for the conference can be found here.
Ecclesiastical History Society Conference 2018-19: The Church and the Law
Call for papers (Deadline: 31 March 2018)
24-26 July 2018, Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge
This theme addresses the legal issues and legal consequences underlying relations between secular and religious authorities in the context of the Christian church, from its earliest emergence within Roman Palestine as a persecuted minority sect through to the period when it became legally recognised within the Roman empire, its many institutional manifestations in East and West throughout the middle ages, the reconfigurations associated with the Reformation and Counter- Reformation, the legal and constitutional complications (such as in Reformation England or Calvin’s Geneva), and the variable consequences of so-called secularisation thereafter. On many occasions in recent years, moreover, we have been confronted with contemporary discrepancies, contradictions, and even rejection of secular laws, modern social mores or social attitudes. What were the legal consequences and implications of the Reformation, (including the confiscation and restitution of property), of the French wars of religion; the French Revolution; the political transformations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries? Are there particular influences on the formation of ecclesiastical law (the Bible, Roman law, national law codes)? The engagement of secular and religious authorities with the law and what that law actually comprised (Roman law, canon law, national laws, state and royal edicts) are further issues to be addressed. This is also a theme that requires the examination of the formation of bodies of law and how and why it became recognised as law. The formation of canon law is a case in point. There is also the problem of definition. How early, for example, can a ‘code of canon law’ be defined, and what are the processes by which opinion and conciliar decision became perceived as ‘law’? What light does the transmission and reception of ‘canon law’ throw on such questions?
For further details, see http://www.history.ac.uk/ehsoc/ehs-conference-2018-19-church-and-law
The Sacral and the Secular: Early Medieval Political Theology
Conference/Call for papers (deadline: 15 January 2018)
28 June 2018, Churchill College, Cambridge
Ever since Ernst Kantorowicz popularised the term ‘political theology’ in the 1950s, scholars have known that the political and religious thought of the early Middle Ages cannot be separated. But since the 1990s there has been a resurgence of interest in this field. The traditional focus on sacral kingship has been replaced by an awareness of the early Middle Ages as a world of debate and contestation where a wide variety of political theologies existed. This one-day conference will explore the latest thinking on early medieval political theology, with particular attention to the idea of the secular during the period.
Drawing on the Past: the pre-modern world in comics
Conference/Call for papers (deadline: 22 December 2017)
10-11 September 2018, Senate House, London
We invite abstracts for papers, posters and interactive workshops on any aspect of comics set in the pre-modern world to be presented at a two-day conference at Senate House in London on 10-11th September 2018.
Our brief has a broad chronological and geographical scope, from the Bronze Age onwards, including but not limited to Greece, Rome, Egypt, Near East, Ancient Norse, Mesoamerica etc. The concept of comics itself is similarly broadly interpreted, covering different traditions including but not limited to the American graphic novel, the Franco-Belgian tradition, and Japanese manga. Contributions may focus on series as well as on individual episodes, including those from series that do not consistently engage with the pre-modern world.
For full details, see https://drawingonthepast.wordpress.com/blog/
Lincoln College Summer School of Greek Palaeography
30 July-4 August 2018 Lincoln College, Oxford (Application deadline: 15 January 2018)
The school offers a five-day introduction to the study of Greek manuscripts through ten reading classes, two library visits and four thematic lectures. The school is intended for students of Classics, Patristics, Theology, Biblical or Byzantine Studies. Potential applicants are advised that it only offers introductory-level instruction in Greek palaeography and codicology. Adequate knowledge of Greek is a must for all students.
The school does not charge student fees. Students are individually responsible for their transportation and living expenses in Oxford. A few bursaries, covering housing (but no board), will be awarded to particularly deserving applicants.
For full details and applications, see https://www.linc.ox.ac.uk/Greek-Palaeography-About
The University of London Postgraduate Working Seminar on Editing Byzantine Texts
2 February-23 March 2017: The Warburg Institute, University of London, Classroom 2, Ground Floor, Woburn Square, London WC1H 0AB, Fridays 15:45-17:45
The Seminar will resume its meetings to prepare a new annotated edition and translation of the Letters of George of Cyprus (later Ecumenical Patriarch Gregory II, 1283-1289). Scholars and graduate students who are interested in Byzantine texts are welcome to participate. Please contact the co-convenors, Dr Charalambos Dendrinos and Dr Christopher Wright.
For further information please see the Seminar webpage.
Rethinking the Medieval Frontier
Call for papers (deadline: 1 February 2018)
10 April 2018, University of Leeds
Few topics in medieval studies have as much current relevance and activity as frontiers and borders. Yet approaches to their study in the Middle Ages are often untheorised, and compare, if at all, only to often outdated studies of the ancient or modern world. Yet medievalists are well placed, given the richness of their material and the complexity of medieval politics and society, to challenge such ‘classical’ ideas of The Frontier, whose weaknesses are now being exposed by current events. A fully comparative approach to the possibilities of what it meant to establish, live in or contest a frontier or border zone shown by the societies of late Antiquity and the Middle Ages can power the development of a new shared understanding of the processes at work where borders are laid down or transgressed.
For full details, see the full Call for Papers.
The Maladies, Miracles and Medicine of the Middle Ages, II: Places, Spaces and Objects
Conference/Call for papers (closes 5 January 2018)
23 March 2018, The Graduate Centre for Medieval Studies, University of Reading
As medievalists, we access our period through the written records, sites, and items that survive in order to form a deeper understanding of the period, one that goes beyond the page or the ruinous buildings that remain today. Using a wide range of sources is particularly valuable when considering the miraculous and the medicinal. After all, it is not just the writings, but the spaces, places and objects of both healthcare and of the holy which can inform and shape our research, and thus of understanding. Indeed, in many instances these two elements combine, as can be seen through the production of miracle cures, the monastic collections of medical treatises, and medieval hospitals and monastic infirmaries.
But, what can these sources tell us of miracles, of medicine, of maladies? How did the miraculous and the medicinal relate to and/or oppose each other? What can we learn of faith and the faithful, and of ill-health and healing? It is questions such as these which the second ‘Maladies, Miracles and Medicine’ conference considers by bringing together post-graduate and early-career researchers who work on all aspects of the healing and the holy. The conference welcomes papers on all aspects of this theme whether your interests lie in archaeology, art, literature, medicine and science, or miracles and theology (or a little bit of everything).
Fur details, download the full Call for Papers.
Medieval Eurabia: Religious Crosspollinations in Architecture, Art and Material Culture during the High and Late Middle Ages (1000-1600)
2018 Annual Conference of the Association for Art History (U.K.)
5-7 April 2018 Courtauld Institute of Art & King’s College London
The coexistence of Christianity and Islam in the Medieval Mediterranean led to a transfer of knowledge in architecture and material culture which went well beyond religious and geographical boundaries. The use of Islamic objects in Christian contexts, the conversion of churches into mosques and the mobility of craftsmen are manifestations of this process. Although studies beginning with Avinoam Shalem’s Islam Christianized (1996), have dealt extensively with Islamic influence in the West and European influence in the Islamic Mediterranean, sacred objects, and material culture more generally, have been relatively neglected. From crosses found in Mosques, to European-Christian coins with pseudo/-shahada inscriptions, medieval material culture is rife with visual evidence of the two faiths co-existing in both individual objects and monuments.
This panel invites papers from scholars working on intercultural exchange in art, architecture and material culture. We particularly welcome contributions that focus on sacred objects that have been diverted or ‘converted’ to a new purpose, whether inside or outside an explicitly religious context. Papers should present original research, which expands the boundaries of knowledge and which the scholars would like to be considered for publication. Abstract should be no more than 250 words long.
Deadline: 1 November 2017
Panel organised by Sami De Giosa, Oxford University and Nikolaos Vryzidis, British School at Athens
Medieval Monks, Nuns & Monastic Life
21st Biennial Symposium of the IMSSS
15-20 July 2018, University of Bristol
The 2018 IMSSS symposium will explore the breadth and depth of sermon literature and preaching activity relating to monks, nuns, and monastic life, and serve as a microcosm of the religious and cultural landscape of the Middle Ages.
The symposium will be based in the beautiful grounds of the University of Bristol's Wills Hall, and will include a workshop at historic Downside Abbey, with its medieval manuscripts, incunables, and Centre for Monastic Heritage. We will also visit Wells Cathedral, as well as the medieval sites of Bristol.
Keynote speakers include Claudia Rapp and Brian Patrick McGuire.
For full details, see imsss.net/symposium-2018
Conferences, Lectures & Calls for Papers (Outside UK)
The Byzantine Liturgy and the Jews
Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 1 July 2018)
9-11 July 2019, Sibiu, Romania
Anti-Jewish elements have persisted in the Byzantine liturgy for over a thousand years in areas under the influence of the Eastern Christian Empire. These elements have spread through translation from Byzantium to all countries and cultures which worship today according to the Byzantine rite. Despite the profound theological and liturgical changes that have taken place in the second half of the 20th century in Western Christianity, hymns that were composed in the polemical context of the 8th -9th centuries are still used today in Eastern countries and in the Christian Orthodox Communities of the diaspora.
The conference with the topic Byzantine liturgy and the Jews addresses the issue of liturgical anti-Judaism from various perspectives, in order to provide the necessary tools so that we can better understand this reality:
Historical-criticism – which hymns fall within this discussion? When were these texts included in the liturgy and what were the overall social and political contexts in which they were written? What differences can one identify between original versions and translated ones and what are the aspects that have led to innovation in translating these texts? And how do texts with Byzantine anti-Jewish elements differ from analogous texts from the Syriac, Coptic, Armenian and Georgian traditions?
Patristic and liturgical approach – which is the role of hymns within the liturgical structure? What is the relationship between hymnography and homilies and other patristic writings? To what extent can one identify a patristic origin of certain anti-Jewish topoi and how did this very fact assure their transmission in worship? And what can be said about the image of the Jews in Byzantine iconography and their possible relation with hymnographic texts?
Theological approach – what kind of relationship is there between biblical statements regarding Israel and anti- Jewish hymnography? What is truly anti-Jewish in the Byzantine rite? Which are the criteria that would guide us today in evaluating liturgical texts from this perspective?
Socio-cultural impact – to what extent can one follow how these hymns reflect, consolidate and modify the mentalities of given religious communities?
Presentation abstracts of no more than 200 words should be sent to: email@example.com Deadline: July 1, 2018. Papers may be presented in English and German. Conference proceedings will be published in the Peter Lang’s Edition Israelogie series. Financial support may be available upon consultation with the organisers.
Byzantine Greek Summer School
9–27 July 2018, Bogazici University, Istanbul
Application deadline: 30 April 2018
The Byzantine Studies Research Center is pleased to announce the organization of its second Byzantine Greek Summer School program to be held at Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey, from July 9 to July 27, 2018. Students will have the chance to participate in an intensive program in Medieval Greek with Prof. Niels Gaul and Dr. Athanasia Stavrou, while enjoying various attractions of the Bogazici University campus on the Bosphorus and the Byzantine sites of Istanbul.
For more information, please see: byzantinestudies.boun.edu.tr
Akropolis: Journal of Hellenic Studies
Call for articles (Deadline: 1 September 2018)
Akropolis: Journal of Hellenic Studies is now accepting submissions for volume 2 (2018). The deadline for submissions is 1st September.
Please submit your articles for review through our online submission system and prepare you articles in accordance with the instructions: helenskestudije.me/ojs/index.php/jhs/about/submissions
Topographies in Motion: Urban Movement and Mobility in Late Antiquity (4th to 6th Centuries)
Workshop/Call for papers (deadline: 23 February 2018)
4-5 October 2018, LMU Munich, Austria
What defines a late-antique city? For some years, scholars have debated this question starting from infrastructure, monuments, squares etc. In this perspective, cities appear as rather static environments and as vessels, as it were, for urban activity and life to take place. More recent research, however, is emphasizing performative aspects of the antique city. Primarily with respect to republican and post-republican times, urban movement and mobility have become a key for understanding how human life within antique cities unfolded and how this motion created and altered urban spaces.
This workshop asks how late-antique urban topographies were constituted, shaped, and changed by societies, people(s), objects, and goods moving through these cities and across their boundaries. More specifically, the workshop pursues a case-by-case approach. We are interested in case studies and contributions that examine particular practices in specific cities from across the late-antique Roman Empire. Through the lenses of movement and mobility, applicants may consider the making and un-making of (different kinds of) urban spaces, their religious, social, or economic meaning, their symbolic value, or their function as means of representation and performance. While scholars are encouraged to draw on all relevant types of sources, individual cases should be discussed in dialogue or contrast with the respective urban topographies.
Forms of urban movement and mobility to consider may include:
- Spatial mobility of objects and artefacts (e.g. images, religious objects, statues)
- Private and communal urban movement
- The role of religion for urban movement and mobility
- Commercial movement and the mobility of goods
- Traffic routes and their impact on urban and suburban movement and mobility
- Mobility (spatial and social) and the boundary between city and countryside
We encourage submissions both from established scholars as well as younger colleagues working in all relevant disciplines (e.g. history, archaeology, religious studies and church history, art history, literature). Simon Malmberg (Classical Archaeology, Bergen) will be giving the keynote lecture.
Applicants are invited to submit a short CV and an abstract for a paper of 20 minutes. Please submit your application by 23 February 2018 to Florian Wöller (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The workshop will be hosted at the Center for Advanced Studies (CAS) at LMU Munich. Travel and accommodation expenses can be reimbursed up to a certain amount. For any questions, please write to Florian Wöller (email@example.com).
From Homer to Hatzi-Yavrouda – Aspects of oral narration in the Greek tradition
Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 1 May 2018)
29-30 September 2018, The Danish Institute at Athens, Greece
In European culture, literature has been orally created and diffused as a parallel to written literature, but until rather recently the two traditions have mostly been studied separately. However, there is a closer interrelationship between the two, and it is not just the orally diffused folk literature that is inspired by the written high-culture literature. It is also vice versa. Therefore, the conference will start with the question: What is orality?
We wish to study orality from different genres and periods within the Greek tradition and from different academic fields, as e.g. classical philology, byzantine studies, folklore, and comparative literature. Proposals in all these fields are welcome as are proposals addressing the interrelationship between oral and written literature, or the influence from and to other cultures. For the modern period special focus will be given to the folktale.
For details, download the call for papers.
Novel Saints. Novel, Hagiography and Romance from the 4th to the 12th Century
International conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 15 April 2018)
22-24 November 2018, Het Pand, Ghent, Belgium
The early history of the novel has not been written yet. The oldest representatives of this genre (also called ‘ancient romances’ in scholarship) were written in Latin and Greek in the first few centuries of the Common Era. Often, scholars have observed an interim period between the fourth and twelfth centuries from which no novels are said to have been preserved, and identify a so-called ‘re-emergence’ of the genre in Byzantium. Building on recent research that studies hagiography as literature, this conference of the ERC project Novel Saints (Ghent University) aims to challenge this view by studying hagiography as a continuation of novelistic literature during the so-called ‘dark age’ of the novel.
The conference aims to examine the persistence of ancient novelistic material in hagiography and instances of continuity of novelistic and/or hagiographical strands in medieval romances in the West, Byzantium and Persia.
For details, download the call for papers.
The Forty-Fourth Annual Byzantine Studies Conference
Call for papers (Deadline: 15 February 2018)
4-7 October 2018, San Antonio, Texas, USA
The Forty-fourth Annual Byzantine Studies Conference (BSC) will be held in San Antonio, Texas, from Thursday evening, October 4th through Sunday afternoon, October 7th. For information on BSANA, please consult the BSANA website, www.bsana.net; for details on the conference, please consult the 2018 BSC website, www.bsc2018.com, which will be further updated as new information becomes available.
The BSC is the annual forum for the presentation and discussion of papers on every aspect of Byzantine Studies, and is open to all, regardless of nationality or academic status. It is also the occasion of the annual meeting of the Byzantine Studies Association of North America (BSANA), conducted by its officers.
For further details, download the call for papers.
New Research on Ancient Armenia
Workshop for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Researcher/Call for papers (deadline: 15 February 2018)
8 June 2018, University of Geneva, Switzerland
The Armenian Studies team (Unité d’arménien) at the MESLO Department, University of Geneva, is pleased to invite graduate students and early career researchers (not yet holding a permanent position in Academia) to present their current research on any aspect of Ancient and Medieval Armenia to an audience of their peers. The workshop has been conceived as an international forum in which the newest generation of researchers in the field can engage in meaningful discussion on methodologies, problems and perspectives. Presentations detailing work in progress, research projects, and innovative approaches are welcome. In the interest of drawing attention to comparatively less-known topics, preference may be given to subjects other than ‘Classical’ 5th-century language, literature, history and art.
Each participant will have 20 minutes to present his/her paper, plus 10 minutes for questions and discussion. Applicants are invited to submit a title, short abstract (no more than 300 words) and a brief academic biography by 15 February 2018. Please send your documents as .pdf files to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Limited grants are available to assist with travel and accommodation expenses: those who cannot obtain financial support from their home institution and would otherwise be unable to attend are invited to submit a short statement in support of their request along with their abstracts. Applications for grants of up to 300 CHF each will be considered (to be paid after the workshop). The organizers reserve the right to make decisions on the matter at their sole discretion.
For any clarifications, please do not hesitate to contact Dr Irene Tinti (email@example.com).
Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 31 January 2018)
7-8 September 2018, Ca’ Foscari, Venice
John Tzetzes was a towering figure in the scholarly landscape of twelfth-century Constantinople, and his name crops up time and again in modern scholarship, Classical and Byzantine alike. He commented extensively on poets such as Homer, Hesiod, Aristophanes, and the intractable Lycophron. He is a source of the greatest importance for the history and transmission of scholarship in antiquity. He had access to works that are lost to us; he may have been the last person to read Hipponax at first hand before the age of papyrological discoveries.
Gifted with a cantankerous personality which he made no attempt to conceal, he had a very high opinion of his own worth as a scholar and a correspondingly low opinion of almost everybody else’s. He was the sort of person who would pepper his letters with erudite references, then compose an enormous poem to elucidate them and write scholia to it. His idiosyncratic writerly persona has made him an easy target for the irony of twentieth-century scholars; Martin West dubbed him a ’lovable buffoon’, and he was kinder to him than others.
It is all too easy, especially for classicists, not to see beyond a combination of Tzetzes the caricature and Tzetzes the footnote fodder; someone to use without engaging too closely. But his vast learning and the variety and influence of his writings demands a more discerning attention. The past few decades have witnessed an increasing interest in his works, with several editions (and more in progress), a steady flow of articles, and even a few translations into modern languages. The time is ripe for scholars in classical and Byzantine studies to join forces towards a better understanding of Tzetzes and his output.
The colloquium will take place in the scenic Aula Baratto of Ca’ Foscari University, overlooking the Grand Canal, on 7th and 8th September 2018. Abstracts of no more than 400 words should be sent by email, preferably in PDF format, to firstname.lastname@example.org by 31st January 2018. Speakers will be offered accommodation and a contribution to travel expenses can also be made available. The colloquium is funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement no. 708556 (Ancient scholarship on archaic Greek iambic poetry / ASAGIP).
Transmitting a Heritage – The Teaching of Ancient Languages from Antiquity to the 21st Century
16-17 April 2018, Jerusalem, Israel
The Polis Institute is an academic initiative of a group of scholars and researchers specialized in linguistics and pedagogy, Classical and Near Eastern languages, history and ancient and medieval studies, who believe that languages act as doorkeepers for cultures. This observation is valid for modern and ancient languages alike. The history of the teaching of ancient languages in Europe almost amounts to a history of education in the Western world, which has focused for centuries on the knowledge of Greek and Latin language and literature, as well as on Rhetoric. The current loss of mastery of these languages makes it difficult for researchers to deeply and thoroughly understand the authors that have shaped Western culture for centuries.
The Conference “Transmitting a Heritage” aims at providing an international and interdisciplinary framework, gathering linguists, historians, philosophers and specialists from various disciplines of the humanities. Every presentation will be followed by a discussion. A summary of these debates will be recorded, transcribed and published together with the articles in the proceedings. The resulting book will also feature a general introduction that will show the points of convergence between participants, as well as possible breakthroughs in research. We hope that this publication will renew and reinvigorate the scientific debate on this core topic within the Humanities.
The Conference will cover the following topics, among others: Current methods of teaching ancient languages in a living way – Evolution of language instruction through the centuries – Influence of the target language on the method (Classical, Semitic, Modern) – Theoretical background of various methodological approaches to language teaching – History of the accessibility of knowledge and its influence on language teaching.
Twenty-Second Biennial Conference of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric
Conference/Call for papers (Deadline: 11 May 2018)
23-27 July 2019, New Orleans, LA, USA
The Society calls for twenty-minute conference papers focusing on historical aspects of the theory and practice of rhetoric. This year’s specific conference theme or focus is “populism.” From its beginnings, rhetoric has been criticized for its perceived focus on manipulation of popular thought and emotions. Rhetoric can thus be easily associated with “populism,” a political concept describing movements, both left and right, that vigorously claim to champion the interests of “the people” against those of privileged elites. From the Greeks to contemporary politics, many aspects of rhetorical theory and practice can be viewed in this light, whether in ideologically charged argumentation, in popular modes of style, or in delivery. At the same time, the concept of populism itself can be contested. Finally, the reaction to perceived populism is a rhetorical study in its own right.
For full details, see http://www.ishr-conference.org/papers.php
Armenian Studies Summer School
29 July-18 August 2018, Yerevan, Armenia
Application deadline: 20 April 2018
After organizing 3 Armenian Studies Summer Schools and 2 Armenian Language winter schools in Armenia ARMACAD is now pleased to announce its fourth International Armenian Studies Summer School with special focus on modern Eastern Armenian in Yerevan, Armenia to take place from July 29, 2018 to August 18, 2018. This 21 days summer school offers participants to master skills in written and oral modern Armenian, reading and interpreting Armenian texts from different periods as well as rapidly deepening their knowledge in colloquial Armenian. During the summer school 2 cultural trips will be offered, which will transform your stay in Armenia into an unforgettable, academically oriented endeavor.
This school is designed for students, at least 18 years-old, who not only want to make well-grounded progress in their knowledge of the Eastern Armenian language, but also to deepen their knowledge of Armenian Studies and Armenia. It offers an intensive Armenian language course spanning 60 hours, divided into 15 days of instruction and focusing on grammar, reading, speaking, and writing. Another 10 hours is devoted to lectures on Armenian literature and history.
Byzantium and the Modern Imagination: Patterns of the Reception of Byzantium in Modern Culture
Conference/Call for Papers (deadline: 30 March 2018)
12-14 September 2018, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic
The imagery of Byzantium in popular discourse is a culturally and historically constructed notion. As has been noted, the very name “Byzantium” is both a retronym and an exonym, and scholars today very often insist on using a more proper description – “The Eastern Roman Empire”. Writers, playwrights, musicians, and politicians throughout centuries constructed their own versions of Byzantium, which depended on local artistic or political needs. In many cases these constructed versions had very little to do with the “historical” Byzantium. Yet, at the same time, academic discourse might – and did – influence the imagery of Byzantium in the popular imagination. During the conference we would like to discuss these imaginary visions of Byzantium, including the intersections of popular and academic images of Byzantium. We also welcome papers dealing with the use (and abuse) of key events in Byzantine history (such as the Fall of City) and their reworkings in literature and culture.
For details, download the full Call for Papers.
Iconography of Pain
Twelfth International Conference of Iconographic Studies/Call for papers (deadline: 20 January 2018)
31 May-1 June 2018, Rijeka, Croatia
The conference seeks to explore and discuss recent development in the dialogue between art history, history, theology, philosophy, cultural theory and other relevant disciplines concerning the representation and perception of pain (both physical and emotional) in history. Pain represents not only one of the very used subjects in art but also the strong creative force for many artists. It has been recently discussed as being a transformative force in cultural production but also beyond the cultural and temporal boundaries. It can be also perceived within specific methodological paradigm of the Warburg's Pathosformel as well as within the broader theoretical contexts. We welcome academic papers that will approach these subjects in interdisciplinary and methodologically diverse angles.
For full details, download the Call for Papers.
The Byzantine tradition of Church embroidery in the Mediterranean and the Slavic World (1200-1800)
Call for submissions (Deadline: 28 February 2018)
This thematic issue of Cahiers Balkaniques (INALCO), which will appear in 2019, celebrates the Byzantine tradition of Church embroidery and its various afterlives. It aims at investigating its evolution within the sphere of Byzantium’s cultural influence and beyond, with a chronological scope which begins from the Late Middle Ages and stretches until the 19th century, when artisanal productions begin to decline. We welcome proposals on the following subjects:
- The different aspects of Byzantine ecclesiastical embroidery and its artistic and technical evolutions.
- Embroidery techniques and iconographies transmitted from West and/or East.
- The relationship between Byzantine/post-Byzantine productions and the Christian Orient (ex. Armenia,Georgia)
- The management of Byzantine heritage in the Slavic World. - Italian-Greek borderland productions (ex. the Ionian Islands)
- The circulation of Byzantine embroideries overseas (Italy, Eastern Europe and beyond)
- Christian embroideryin Egypt and the Levant
Proposals by junior and senior researchers will be equally considered with priority being given to original research, whether based on technical analysis, iconographical interpretation or textual evidence. Subjects which favor interdisciplinarity are particularly welcome. The volume will be bilingual (French and English) and will appear in print in 2019. Please submit abstracts of no more than 300 words to email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
International Spring School 'The Material Dimension of Religions: Transcultural Approaches to Epigraphical and Archaeological Sources from Antiquity to the Middle Ages'
5-9 March 2018, University of Goettingen (Application deadline: 24 November 2017)
Notwithstanding the importance of literary texts, the practice of religious cults and rituals is investigated through the evidence of material culture, from inscriptions, paintings, and statues to objects and buildings. However, it is challenging to cope with fragile, scattered, and often fragmentary documents, to study their settings, and to scrutinize their impact on worship and everyday life. Thus, the issue of the materiality of religions merits a scholarly treatment on its own. The Material Dimension of Religions Spring School is aimed at graduate students and intends to examine theories and methods of investigating religions through epigraphical and archaeological sources in a transcultural and transhistorical approach. The schedule includes seven workshops on Ancient Greece, Imperial Rome, Late Antique Judaism, Early Christianity, Classical Islam, Christian Middle Ages, and Jerusalem as a transcultural place, and four keynotes on Greek epigraphy and religion, religion in the public space, the materiality of texts, and the city of Jerusalem as an example of coexistence and interaction of the materialities of religions. The spring school will provide an intensive training for interpreting non-literary sources in a historical perspective. The participants will learn how to study religions from inscriptions and material culture. Furthermore, looking at the topography of cities like Rome and Jerusalem, the participants will increase the awareness of processes of interactions and exchanges between religious traditions in antiquity.
Practicalities: participants will be expected to attend all sessions. The main language will be English. Accommodation of successful applicants will be fully covered. A contribution to travel costs may be awarded to students who lack other funding opportunities upon application at the SFB 1136 Bildung und Religion.
How to apply We welcome applications from graduate students of Classics, History, Archaeology, Theology, Judaic Studies, Arabic Studies, and related disciplines. Preliminary requirements: a basic knowledge of at least one of the following languages: ancient Greek, Latin, Jewish Aramaic, Hebrew, Arabic. an interest at university level in history of religions, archaeology, or epigraphy.
Please send by Friday the 24th of November a full CV and an application letter in English or in German (max. 600 words) explaining your motivation for participating in the Spring School to: email@example.com
Cyprus: a place and topos in ancient literature
Conference/Call for papers (deadline: 15 January 2018)
21-22 September 2018, Athens
Whether it was love, war, struggle or simply a breathtaking landscape that inspired authors in antiquity, Cyprus had it all. Greek and Latin literature abounds with references to the island: the land of kings and heroes and, most importantly, the birthplace of Aphrodite/Venus, Cyprus offers to ancient authors numerous sources of inspiration - Teucer, Evagoras, Pygmalion, Cinyras, Myrrha, Adonis, to name but a few. At the same time, Cyprus the place has a unique cultural identity, shaped under the multiple interrelations, contacts and assimilations of indigenous Cypriot, Greek, and Eastern elements. Similar is the shaping of the linguistic landscape of the island.
Although the presence of Cyprus in literature is evident, a systematic exploration of the literary character and the role of the island in classical literature has not appeared yet. In addition, there is still much to be said about the literary production in Cyprus. The recent launch of the ‘Digital Ancient Cypriot Literature’ as part of Dioptra (dioptra.cyi.ac.cy) enables classicists to assess a variety of sources which shape the literary culture of Cyprus. Motivated by this recent development, this conference invites contributions to the following suggested topics:
- the poetic exploitation of Cyprus (as a place or theme);
- the literary landscape and production in Cyprus from the archaic period up to the Late Antiquity;
- Cyprus as a possible literary topos;
- the perception of Cyprus as place: references to, and descriptions of, the island and its habitants;
- reception of Cypriot themes and traditions in classical literature.
Papers may engage with literary genres of any period up to the Late Antiquity, including inscriptions. PhD students and early career researchers as well as members of under-represented groups are encouraged to participate. The papers shall be in English or any other major European language, provided that an English translation is supplied.
The Conference will take place on September 21-22, 2018, in Athens, Greece. Details on keynote speakers, accommodation, travel, and registration (subject to funding) will be announced in due course. Informal questions/enquiries can be addressed to Andreas Gavrielatos (firstname.lastname@example.org). Selected papers will be considered for publication in an edited volume (after peer-review). Abstracts of no more than 300 words can be submitted by January 15, 2018, to any (or all) of the members of the organising committee: Amfilochios Papathomas (email@example.com), Andreas Gavrielatos (firstname.lastname@example.org), Grammatiki Karla (email@example.com), Katerina Carvounis (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies
Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 31 December 2017)
June 18-20, 2018, Saint Louis University, Saint Louis, Missouri, USA
The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies (June 18-20, 2018) is a convenient summer venue for scholars from around the world to present papers, organize sessions, participate in roundtables, and engage in interdisciplinary discussion. The goal of the Symposium is to promote serious scholarly investigation into all topics and in all disciplines of medieval and early modern studies.
The plenary speakers for this year will be Geoffrey Parker of The Ohio State University, and Carole Hillenbrand of the University of St Andrews.
The Symposium is held annually on the beautiful midtown campus of Saint Louis University. On-campus housing options include affordable, air-conditioned apartments as well as a luxurious boutique hotel. Inexpensive meal plans are available, and there is also a wealth of restaurants, bars, and cultural venues within easy walking distance of campus. While attending the Symposium participants are free to use the Vatican Film Library, the Rare Book and Manuscripts Collection, and the general collection at Saint Louis University's Pius XII Memorial Library.
The Sixth Annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies invites proposals for papers, complete sessions, and roundtables. Any topics regarding the scholarly investigation of the medieval and early modern world are welcome. Papers are normally twenty minutes each and sessions are scheduled for ninety minutes. Scholarly organizations are especially encouraged to sponsor proposals for complete sessions.
The deadline for all submissions is December 31. Decisions will be made in January and the final program will be published in February. For more information or to submit your proposal online go to: smrs.slu.edu
Byzantine Poetry in the ‘Long’ Twelfth Century (1081-1204) Perceptions, Motivations and Functions
Conference/Call for Papers (Deadline: 15 October 2017)
Austrian Academy of Sciences, 13-15 June 2018, Vienna
The time span between the ascension of Alexios I Komnenos to the throne (1081) and the fall of Constantinople to the Latins (1204) is marked by striking historical and socio-cultural developments that influenced many aspects of the contemporary literary production. This holds true especially for texts written in verse, the production of which is much larger than in any other century in middle and late Byzantine times. The twelfth century can thus be described as the ‘golden age’ of Byzantine poetry, since it flourished throughout the entire period both in Constantinople and the periphery of the empire (e.g. Southern Italy, and Athens in the late twelfth century). However, it is not only its amount that determines the significant place of Komnenian poetry in Byzantine literary and social culture. Many literary novelties are closely associated with the poetry of this period, such as the unprecedented use of literature for ceremonial and didactic purposes at the court, or the emergence of vernacular works. While the poetry of this period maintains many features of texts written in other periods, at the same time it undergoes a transformation acquiring a distinguished character. Even though many texts have received due scholarly attention, our picture of poetic production is still vague and fragmentary.
For further details, see the full call for papers.
Inside Out: Dress and Identity in the Middle Ages
38th Annual Conference, Center for Medieval Studies
March 17-18 2018, Fordham University, Lincoln Center Campus, New York, NY
Dress was a primary expression of identity in the European middle ages, when individuals made strategic choices about clothing and bodily adornment (including hairstyle, jewelry, and other accessories) in order to communicate gender, ethnicity, status, occupation, and other personal and group identities. Because outward appearances were often interpreted as a reliable reflection of inner selves, medieval dress, in its material embodiment as well as in literary and artistic representations, carried extraordinary moral and social meaning, as well as offering seductive possibilities for self-presentation.
For full details, see www.fordham.edu/info/26756/inside_out_dress_and_identity_in_the_middle_ages
Armenia & Byzantium without Borders
Graduate and Early Career Workshop/Call for papers (closes 31 October 2017)
20-22 April 2018, University of Vienna, Austria
Within the framework of ‘Moving Byzantium: Mobility, Microstructure and Personal Agency,’ a five-year project begun at the University of Vienna in 2016 and funded through the Wittgenstein-Prize (rapp.univie.ac.at), ‘Armenia & Byzantium without Borders’ is a three-day workshop focussing on social and cultural mobility between Armenia and Byzantium in the Middle Ages. This workshop continues a scholarly conversation initiated in March 2017 at the University of Uppsala where a study-day dedicated to ‘Narrative Exchanges between Byzantium and Armenia’ was organized by AnnaLinden Weller within the Uppsala/Paris ‘Text and Narrative in Byzantium’ project.
We invite advanced PhD candidates and early career scholars working in the fields of Late Antique, Armenian, Byzantine, and Middle Eastern Studies to submit proposals for 20 min. papers connected with the main topics of ‘Moving Byzantium’, with a focus on aspects of social and cultural mobility of persons, objects, and/or ideas between Armenia and Byzantium throughout the Middle Ages. We are particularly interested in new research showing interaction and communication on both literary and material grounds between the Byzantine world and the Armenians. Each paper presented at the workshop will be accompanied by a senior scholar’s 10 min. response, followed by a general discussion. The workshop will be inaugurated with the lecture of our keynote speaker, Prof. Bernard Coulie (Catholic University of Louvain), and will include a visit to the Mekhitarist Monastery of Vienna and a guided tour of the exhibition on ‘Byzantium and the West’ at the Schallaburg Castle.
Travel and accommodation expenses of scholars selected for presentation at the workshop will be covered by a generous grant of the ‘Moving Byzantium’ project. Paper proposals should be sent by the 31st of October 2017 to Emilio Bonfiglio: email@example.com. Applications will include:a) university affiliation; b) graduate level; c) title of the paper; d) abstract (max 250 words); e) CV.
Convenors: Dr. Emilio Bonfiglio and Prof. Claudia Rapp
What’s So Funny? Discovering and Interpreting Humor in the Ancient World
Conference/Call for papers (closes 30 November 2017)
20-21 April 2018 The Ohio State University Columbus, Ohio
Humor is a ubiquitous human phenomenon with a wide range of applications. Yet, what is deemed humorous is often culturally determined. This poses a significant challenge for scholars of ancient cultures. How do we identify what an ancient culture found funny? How did they use humor, and what drove their usage? The purpose of this conference is to provide a forum for scholars across disciplines to discuss and debate humor and its functions in both textual and material sources across the ancient Mediterranean, from the early Near East through late antiquity. We invite papers that address the above questions, or any others, on the topic of humor in an ancient Mediterranean context.
Possible topics include: Theoretical models for identifying and understanding humor and comedy in ancient cultures • Ancient definitions and theories of humor • Humor in political discourse, including propaganda, competition, and resistance • The role of humor in religion and ritual • Humor and social taboo: obscenities, scatology, and transgressive behaviors • Women, sexuality, and gender as sites of humor • Humor and social boundaries: elite and popular, native and foreign, center and periphery, divine and mortal, and other lines of membership • Humor’s function in narrative and in the relationship between storyteller and audience • Humor as entertainment in daily life, including inscriptions, performance, and celebration Abstracts of no more than 300 words should be submitted by email toby 30 November 2017. Please include “Humor Conference Abstract” and your name in the subject line.
Graduate and Early Career Workshop: 'Armenia & Byzantium without Borders'
Workshop/Call for papers (closes 31 December 2017)
20-22 April 2018, Vienna, Austria
We invite advanced PhD candidates and early career scholars working in the fields of Late Antique, Armenian, Byzantine, and Middle Eastern Studies to submit proposals for 20 min. papers for a three-day workshop on ‘Armenia & Byzantium without Borders’ that will take place in Vienna (20–22 April 2018).
Proposals should focus on aspects of social and cultural mobility of persons, objects, and/or ideas between Armenia and Byzantium throughout the Middle Ages. We are particularly interested in new research showing
interaction and communication on both literary and material grounds between the Byzantine world and the Armenians. Travel and accommodation expenses of scholars selected for presentation at the workshop will be covered by a generous grant of the ‘Moving Byzantium’ project.
Further information can be found in the attached document and at: rapp.univie.ac.at
Paper proposals should be sent by the 31st of October 2017 to Dr. Emilio Bonfiglio: firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications will include: a) university affiliation; b) graduate level; c) title of the paper; d) abstract (max 250 words); e) CV.
Othello's Island 2018: 6th annual interdisciplinary conference on byzantine, medieval, renaissance and early modern art, literary, archaeological, historical and cultural studies
25 to 27 March 2018, CVAR, Nicosia, Cyprus
Keynote Lecture 2018: "Donor Portraits in Byzantine Art", to be presented by Professor Henri Frances (American University of Beirut)
The Academic Board for Othello's Island invites applications to present papers at the 6th edition of Othello's Island. This will take place in Nicosia, Cyprus, in March 2018. We are interested in hearing papers on diverse aspects of Byzantine, Medieval, Renaissance and early modern art, literature, history, society and other aspects of culture.
Our remit is broad, and so it is worth looking at the range of papers from past conferences to see that previous speakers have covered topics ranging from slavery in medieval Cyprus and Malta, to the impact of Italian Renaissance art on Cypriot Byzantine painting, and even discussion on the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf. And Shakespeare, and his contemporaries, are important too, of course.
In the six years of its existence, Othello's Island has developed a reputation as one of the most liberal-minded and friendly medieval and renaissance studies conferences in the world today, and it is also genuinely interdisciplinary. In part this is due to the relatively small size of the event, which generates a true sense of community during the conference.
Our location in Cyprus allows for visits to some stunning medieval museums and other sites, including the French gothic cathedrals of St Sophia in Nicosia, and St Nicholas in Famagusta, and we are housed in the centre of the medieval old town of Nicosia, with its narrow winding streets and impressive city walls and gate houses.
Deadline for submissions is 22 December 2017.
For the full call for papers please visit www.othellosisland.org
Neighbours or Strangers? Conflict, Negotiation, and Collaboration in Multicultural Communities Passages from Antiquity to the Middle Ages VII
Conference/Call for Papers (closes 31 October 2017)
23-25 August 2018, University of Tampere, Finland
Questions of toleration, aggression and even hatred based on ethnic diversity have been accentuated in recent times, but multiculturalism in its various forms is far from being confined to the modern world only. The seventh international Passages from Antiquity to the Middle Ages conference will focus on forms of interaction and methods of negotiation in multicultural, multiethnic, and multilingual contexts.
The conference aims at concentrating on social and cultural interaction within and between multi-ethnic and multilingual communities, groups and individuals, minority (minorities) and majority. Cooperation, toleration, and coexistence was an everyday necessity in Ancient and medieval societies. On occasion, however, these would turn into the opposite: suspicion, conflict, and violence, enhanced by power struggles and prejudices. All these had a central influence on social dynamics, negotiations of collective or individual identity, definitions of ethnicity, and shaping of legal rules. What was the function of multicultural and multilingual interaction in various contexts: did it create and increase conflicts, or was it rather a prerequisite for survival and prosperity?
Our focus lies on society and the history of everyday life. We welcome papers, which have a sensitive approach to social differences: gender, status, and ethnicity. Actors, experiences, and various levels of negotiations are of main interest. We aim at a broad coverage not only chronologically but also geographically and disciplinarily (all branches of Classical, Byzantine and Medieval Studies). Most preferable are contributions that have themselves a comparative and/or interdisciplinary viewpoint or focusing on a longue durée perspective.
For full details, see the website:www.uta.fi/trivium/passages/