Conference: Akindynos’ Role in the Hesychast Controversy

Room B-102, UniS, Schanzeneckstrasse 1, CH-3012 Bern, Switzerland, 14-15 March 2019

Deadline: 28 February 2019

This workshop examines the Hesychast Controversy and its protagonists in 14th century Byzantium. It particularly focuses on Gregory Akindynos, Gregory Palamas’ fiercest but least known opponent. The workshop is organised by the Research Group of the Swiss National Science Foundation Project “Akindynos and Palamas in Dispute on Divine Energies” and will bring together various international specialists in the field for the first time.

The workshop is open to the public. Participation is free, but we would like to ask you to register before February the 28th 2019 by sending a message to renate.burri@cgs.unibe.ch

For further information and full programme, see http://www.akindynos.unibe.ch/.

Call for Applications: CEU Medieval Studies

Deadline: 31 January 2019

The Department of Medieval Studies of Central European University (Budapest, Hungary) is pleased to announce its call for applications for the 2019/20 academic year. The deadline is January 31, 2019.

Central European University is a graduate level, English-language University with a unique dual campus in Budapest and Vienna. Our Department offers:
• 1-year MA in Late Antique, Medieval and Early Modern Studies
• 2-year MA in Comparative History: Late Antique, Medieval and Renaissance Studies
• 2-year MA Cultural Heritage Studies
• PhD in Late Antique, Medieval and Early Modern Studies

CEU provides a variety of merit-based scholarships and various other types of financial support available to students from any country (tuition waiver, stipend, housing awards, health insurance coverage): https://www.ceu.edu/financialaid.

For further information, visit: https://medievalstudies.ceu.edu/. Interested applicants can contact us at medstud@ceu.edu, and the department’s recruitment assistant and current PhD student, Dunja Milenkovic, is also happy to answer further questions at Milenkovic_Dunja@phd.ceu.edu.

Call for Papers: Late Antique Textualities

Society for Classical Studies, Washington, D.C., USA, 2-5 January 2020

Deadline: 23 February 2019

In Latin, textus can mean a piece of weaving. Late antiquity is well thought of as a text or a collocation of texts in which many strands are woven together— strands of the old (the Classical past, old genres, persisting aspects of material culture) and strands of the new (Christianity, new or hybridized written genres, new or hybridized elements in material culture or the built environment). At the meeting of the Society for Classical Studies in Washington, D.C., January 2–5, 2020, the Society for Late Antiquity will sponsor a session on the various textualities in late antiquity.
We are looking for papers on textuality in either written texts or material culture. Papers can consider issues of textuality in late-ancient written texts, e.g., language, intertextuality with prior written texts (pagan or Christian), or even genre. Potential panelists could also propose papers that consider textuality in material culture or the built environment, e.g., aesthetics, building styles, or methods that weave together old and new. We also encourage prospective panelists to construe the term textuality broadly and propose papers that transcend and/or question the options enumerated here.

Abstracts for papers requiring a maximum of 20 minutes to deliver should be sent no later than February 23, 2019 by email attachment to Colin Whiting at cwhiting@ascsa.org. All submissions will be judged anonymously by two referees. Prospective panelists must be members in good standing of the SCS at the time of submission and must include their membership number in the cover letter accompanying their abstract. Please follow the SCS’s instructions for the format of individual abstracts: https://classicalstudies.org/annual-meeting/guidelines-authors-abstracts. The submission of an abstract represents a commitment to attend the 2020 meeting should the abstract be accepted. No papers will be read in absentia and the SLA is unable to provide funding for travel to Washington, D.C.

Conference: Processions: Urban Ritual in Byzantium and Neighboring Lands

Byzantine Studies Symposium, Dumbarton Oaks Music Room, Washington DC, USA, 12-13 April 2019

Military, civic, and religious processions were hallmarks of the ancient and medieval world; they continued into the Renaissance and, indeed, continue to this day. Yet the Byzantine procession has not yet been subjected to any synthetic, historicizing, contextualizing, or comparative examination.

Understanding processions is critical for our appreciation of how urban space worked and was manipulated in the Middle Ages. For the 2019 Dumbarton Oaks Byzantine Symposium, speakers will examine texts, artifacts, and images in order to develop a new understanding of medieval urban life across multiple social registers. For example, records of processions show us what kinds of public behavior were acceptable, and when, and where. Studying processions introduces us to new protagonists as well, for processions involve audiences as well as participants, and groups hitherto virtually invisible, such as the team of people who prepared for the event by decorating the streets, will be brought to light. The Byzantine commitment to processions is striking in terms of the resources and time allocated: there were as many as two processions a week in Constantinople, many involving the patriarch and the emperor. In the Latin West, the Crusader States, and in the Fatimid, Ottoman, and Muscovite worlds, by comparison, processions occurred far less frequently: the procession was significantly more important to the Byzantines than to their neighbors and successors. The comparative study of Byzantine processions to be offered by the speakers at the symposium will reveal how the Byzantines operated in a complex global network defined by local contexts, how the Byzantines positioned themselves within this network, and the nature of the Byzantine legacy to the Islamic, Catholic, and Orthodox inheritors of their culture.

For further infromation, see https://www.doaks.org/research/byzantine/scholarly-activities/processions.

Conference: Eclecticism at the Edges

Eclecticism at the Edges: Medieval Art and Architecture at the Crossroads of the Latin, Greek, and Slavic Cultural Spheres (c.1300-c.1550)

Princeton University, USA, 5-9 April 2019

In response to the global turn in art history and medieval studies, “Eclecticism at the Edges” explores the temporal and geographic parameters of the study of medieval art, seeking to challenge the ways in which we think about the artistic production of Eastern Europe from the fourteenth through the sixteenth centuries. This event will serve as a long-awaited platform to examine, discuss, and focus on the eclectic visual cultures of the Balkan Peninsula and the Carpathian Mountains, the specificities, but also the shared cultural heritage of these regions. It will raise issues of cultural contact, transmission, and appropriation of western medieval and Byzantine artistic and cultural traditions in eastern European centers, and consider how this heritage was deployed to shape notions of identity and visual rhetoric in these regions that formed a cultural landscape beyond medieval, Byzantine, and modern borders.

For full information, see https://ima.princeton.edu/conferences/. Note that the symposium is free but reigstration is necessary to guarantee a place.

Conference: Travelling Saints in Byzantium

Newcastle University, 22 February 2019

Travel (in its many forms, ranging from pilgrimage to forced displacement) is a noticeable feature of hagiographic accounts of the Byzantine period. Lives of saints couch diverse stories of geographic mobility, from those of itinerant or vagrant holy men and women, who willingly embrace travel as a way of life and a particular form of humility, to those of displaced monks, who are forcefully driven from their spiritual abodes. Byzantine hagiographic sources thus provide considerable material that would repay investigation within the renewed scholarly interest in Byzantine travel literature. This workshop, therefore, aims at exploring travel in Byzantium in connection to Byzantine ideals of sainthood, as reflected in hagiographic compositions. It brings together early career researchers and senior scholars working on Byzantine literature in general, and especially hagiography, in order to explore and address a set of questions related to monastic mobility.

For more information on the workshop programme and abstracts, please visit https://research.ncl.ac.uk/travellingsaints/.

Call for Papers: The Problem of Piracy

The Problem of Piracy: An Interdisciplinary Conference on Plunder by Sea across the World from the Ancient to the Modern, University of Strathclyde, 24-26 June 2019

Deadline: 31 January 2019

The study of piracy brings with it several interpretational problems and questions. As a global phenomenon that has lasted millennia, even defining piracy historically is difficult. Its meaning depended on distinctive legal and customary perceptions of predation at sea by diverse communities, kingdoms, and empires. Scholars have recently engaged with other important questions about piracy and maritime predation: How have acts of maritime predation been perceived in different contexts? In what circumstances did pirates self-identify as pirates? By what means was piracy suppressed? To what extent did different pirate communities engage in alternative political, economic, and social structures? Basically, how should scholars see piracy?

In June 2019, this three-day conference seeks to address these and other “problems” of piracy by bringing together a wide range of postgraduate, early career, and senior researchers who study any aspect of piracy and maritime predation across various chronological, geographical, and disciplinary barriers. Doing so will offer the opportunity to compare and contrast different episodes, interpretations, and perceptions of piracy and maritime predation from the ancient to the modern period.

Possible themes, are not limited to, but include:
– Impact of maritime predation (economic, social, cultural, etc.)
– Perceptions of piracy and maritime predation
– Suppressing piracy
– Law of maritime predation
– Gender and maritime predation
– Image of pirates
– Literature of piracy

We welcome proposals for both individual papers and three-paper panels that discuss any aspect of piracy and maritime predation occurring across the world’s oceans from the ancient to the modern period. Abstracts of 250 words along with a short biographical note should be sent to John Coakley(Merrimack College), Nathan Kwan (University of Hong Kong / King’s College London), and David Wilson (University of Strathclyde) at problemofpiracyconference@outlook.com by 5pm (GMT) on 31 January 2019.

Call for Papers: Deviance: Aspects & Approaches

The 2019 Oxford Medieval Graduate Conference, Kellogg College, Oxford, 5-6 April 2019

Deadline: 20 January 2019
We are pleased to open the Call for Papers for the Fifteenth Oxford Medieval Graduate Conference, sponsored by the Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature. The conference is aimed at early career scholars and graduate students working in Medieval Studies. Contributions are welcomed from diverse fields of research such as History of Art and Architecture, History of Science, History, Theology, Philosophy, Music, Archaeology, Anthropology, Literature, and History of Ideas. Papers should be a maximum of 20 minutes.

Please email 250-word abstracts to oxgradconf@gmail.com by 20th January 2019. For details, see the full call for papers.

The registration fee (including a wine reception) is expected to be £10 (tbc). There will be a conference dinner; it is hoped that this will cost in the region of £25. All updates and further information, including details of travel bursaries, can be obtained from the conference website: http://aevum.space/deviance

Grant: Mary Jaharis Center Grants 2019-2020

Deadline: 1 February 2019

The Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture is pleased to announce its 2019-2020 grant competition. Our grants reflect the Mary Jaharis Center’s commitment to fostering the field of Byzantine studies through the support of graduate students and early career researchers and faculty.

Mary Jaharis Center Dissertation Grants are awarded to advanced graduate students working on Ph.D. dissertations in the field of Byzantine studies broadly conceived. These grants are meant to help defray the costs of research-related expenses, e.g., travel, photography/digital images, microfilm.

Mary Jaharis Center Publication Grants support book-length publications or major articles in the field of Byzantine studies broadly conceived. Grants are aimed at early career academics. Preference will be given to postdocs and assistant professors, though applications from non-tenure track faculty and associate and full professors will be considered. We encourage the submission of first-book projects.

The application deadline for all grants is February 1, 2019. For further information, please see https://maryjahariscenter.org/grants/.

Contact Brandie Ratliff (mjcbac@hchc.edu), Director, Mary Jaharis Center, with any questions.