Lecture: ‘Early Rus’ Jewry: Byzantine Connections

14 October 2020, 17:00 BST

Join Cambridge Ukrainian Studies and the Byzantine Worlds Seminar for the 5th Annual Medieval and Early Modern Slavonic Studies Lecture at the University of Cambridge.

The open lecture-webinar on the topic of ‘Early Rus’ Jewry: Byzantine Connections’ will be delivered by Alexander Kulik, Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Russian and Slavic Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. The talk will reassess the evidence on the connections of early East European Jewry with Byzantium. It will focus on new or newly interpreted data which can help to define the origins of pre-Ashkenazi communities in Rus’ and possibly also help to solve some puzzles relating to literary activity in Kyivan Rus’.

Free and open to the public. Register at:
https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_G6tq3RF-SkisWkiS4NRToQ

Conference: Catastrophes and Memory (500-1500 CE)

4th Annual Edinburgh International Graduate Late Antique, Islamic And Byzantine Conference (Online)

19-21 November 2020

This conference will be held online by the Late Antique, Islamic and Byzantine Society of the University of Edinburgh on November 19-21, 2020. The conference focuses on disasters (natural, manmade or “supernatural”) that shape historical memory and our understanding of the past, concentrating on the problematic relations between catastrophes and memory in Late Antique, Islamic and Byzantine societies.

The conference will include Prof. Leslie Brubaker (University of Birmingham) and Prof. Antoine Borrut (University of Maryland) as the keynote speakers among many other prominent academics, researchers, postdoc, and graduate students.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/laibs-online-conference-late-antiquity-islamic-tickets-117904135443

See the attached PDF for full programme:
4th Edinburgh LAIBS Conference 2020

For any questions, please contact the conference committee: byzantine.pg@ed.ac.uk

Online Resource: Syrian Architectural Heritage Released on Wikimedia Commons

Dumbarton Oaks

More than 9,700 photographs of Late Roman and Byzantine monuments in Syria are being uploaded to Wikimedia Commons, in keeping with our Access Initiative to make Dumbarton Oaks collections and scholarship more broadly available. In 2016, retired historian Frank Kidner donated photographs he had taken of Syrian sites in the 1980s and 1990s to Dumbarton Oaks. Emphasizing ancient villages in the modern-day province Idlib, west of Aleppo along the border with Turkey, the Frank Kidner Photographs collection documents sites of historical and archaeological significance while capturing scenes of daily life. His poignant photographs of children playing among the nearly 2,000-year-old ruins stand in stark contrast to familiar images of the ongoing refugee and displacement crisis stemming from the Syrian Civil War. Kidner created a comprehensive resource—drawing together topography, evidence of communities that once lived in the region, and architectural details—that is useful for researchers and scholars across a breadth of fields.

Online Resource: Woven Interiors: Furnishing Early Medieval Egypt Catalogue

Dumbarton Oaks

Experience the vibrant colors and array of textures that enlivened interior spaces in early medieval Egypt. Recent exhibition Woven Interiors—a collaboration with The George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum—presented rare and fragile masterpieces from major American institutions, including many textiles that had never before been exhibited or had remained in storage for decades. Now, download the digital catalogue free of charge to explore some sixty remarkable pieces. Essays from curators Gudrun Bühl, Sumru Belger Krody, and Dumbarton Oaks Assistant Curator of the Byzantine Collection Elizabeth Dospěl Williams highlight major themes of the exhibition, including aesthetics, sacred imagery, comfort at home, and continuity and change. To purchase a hard copy of the catalogue, contact our Museum Shop.

Funded PhD Positions, ‘Ancient, Byzantine and Medieval Studies’

Universität Wien, Austria

Deadline: 6 September 2020

The Vienna Doctoral School of Historical and Cultural Studies invites applications for 6 fully funded doctoral positions (3 years, non-tenure).

The newly established Vienna Doctoral School of Historical and Cultural Studies (SHCS) invites applications from excellent doctoral candidates who intend to pursue their PhD in a vibrant, international academic environment at the University of Vienna.

To apply, you must hold an MA or equivalent degree. Please send an outline of your research project (15.000 characters), a CV, reference letters by two senior scholars, and a statement, why you would like to join the cluster of your choice. Applications will be accepted until June 5th, 2020. You will be informed about the outcome of your application by September 6, 2020. The semester begins October 1st, 2020

The successful applicants’ primary task will be to complete a PhD degree. Active involvement in the activities of the SHCS is expected, while participation in relevant graduate courses offered at Vienna University is required. You will conduct courses and you will participate in the evaluation and quality assurance of the school. The salary is corresponds to the collective agreement for Universities and is limited to a duration of three years. In addition, travel and publication funds are partly available upon application and depending on budget restrictions. Successful applicants will be employed as University Assistant (prae doc). Their contract will run for 3 years and comes with full social security and health insurance benefits. No extra housing allowance will be provided.

For more information, see here.

Online Resource: International Byzantinist Reading Group

A message from the organisers (note that, if you are too late for this session, the group will contiue to meet on subsequent Sundays):

Dear Colleagues,

In light of all the cancelled talks, conferences, etc. because of the current pandemic, we, Scott Kennedy and Ugo Mondini, have created the International Byzantinist Reading Group for graduate students, post-docs, and faculty as a digital space for discussion among scholars currently scattered around the world. We aim to build solidarity among academics interested in late antique and Byzantine culture as well as to lay the foundation for future exchanges and collaboration.

The Group is now in its fourth meeting. Meetings are held on Sundays at 8 pm (Rome time) via the video-conferencing platform Zoom. Based on the number of participants, we do two kinds of discussion groups during a meeting: (1) small group discussion and (2) large group discussion. Through Zoom, we can breakup meeting participants into groups of 5-6. For the first 30 minutes of the meeting, we break participants up into these small groups, so that everyone has the opportunity to speak and discuss the reading with their group. Then for the last 20-30 minutes of the meeting, we discuss the reading altogether. We use the raise your hand feature on Zoom to moderate discussion for the larger group.

For our next reading session (Sunday, 26th April 2020), we will be moving back to late antiquity with the following reading

A. Kaldellis, “How perilous was it to write political history in late antiquity?”, Studies in Late Antiquity 1 (2017) 38-64

You can find the paper on Kaldellis’ academia.edu account: https://bit.ly/3autKNO

If you are interested in participating in this week’s meeting or future meetings of the group, please email Ugo Mondini (ugo.mondini@unimi.it). All participants will be sent an invitation to join the meeting on Sunday via email.

See you next Sunday
Scott Kennedy (scott.kennedy@bilkent.edu.tr)
Ugo Mondini (ugo.mondini@unimi.it)

Fellowship: Short-Term Predoctoral Residencies

Dumbarton Oaks, Washington D.C., USA

Dumbarton Oaks offers a limited number of Short-Term Predoctoral Residencies for advanced graduate students who are preparing for their PhD general exams, writing their doctoral dissertations, or expecting relevant final degrees in the field of Byzantine, Pre-Columbian, or Garden and Landscape studies. Students who plan to conduct research in the fieldwork and photo collections, the rare book collection, or the museum collections are particularly encouraged to apply. The general library collections at Dumbarton Oaks contain more than 210,000 items in a variety of formats, while our rare book collection holds more than 10,000 volumes, prints, drawings, photographs, and blueprints. We welcome and encourage you to peruse our holdings in advance via the HOLLIS catalogue found here. Due to the short-term nature of the award, we are unable to process inter-library loan requests. Each residency provides two to four weeks of single accommodations and lunches on weekdays (with the exception of scheduled refectory closures). In addition, a Reader badge for access to the Library will be issued for the period of the residency. Applicants who live 75 or more miles from Washington, DC, will receive preference.

Successful applicants for residencies will be eligible to apply a second time before they receive their PhD degrees. The award of a residency does not preclude a subsequent award of a junior or a regular fellowship or a One-Month Research Award. Upon completion of the residency, recipients are asked to submit a research report to the Program Director, and to provide future degree completion and subsequent position placement information to the program.

For application details see: https://www.doaks.org/research/fellowships-and-awards/short-term-predoctoral-residencies

Online Resource: North of Byzantium: Medieval Art, Architecture and Visual Culture in Eastern Europe

North of Byzantium (NoB) is a new initiative organized by Maria Alessia Rossi (The Index of Medieval Art) and Alice Isabella Sullivan (Getty/ACLS), and primarily sponsored by the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture. Through its annual events, NoB explores the rich history, art, and culture of the northern frontiers of the Byzantine Empire in Eastern Europe between the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries, and aims to connect students, scholars, teachers, artists, and curators to resources related to the medieval and early modern artistic production of Eastern Europe.

Visit the NoB website and subscribe to receive news and updates.

We are in the process of developing this platform and we would be grateful for any further details and relevant information that we could add under “Resources” and “Related Events” – send us a note at northofbyzantium@gmail.com.

Update: Monumenta Musicae Byzantinae

19th July, 2019

Dear Signatories of the Petition,

We are pleased to inform you that the Monumenta Musicae Byzantinae can continue at the University of Copenhagen, where the project was founded in 1931. The notice of dismissal sent to the present project director, associate professor Christian Troelsgård, was revoked a few days ago, and an agreement has been made, according to which Prof. Troelsgård may for the next 3 years continue his Byzantine chant research activities, with the possibility of prolongation, provided that sufficient external funding has been raised before that time. His position, though, will be only part time (50%). As members of MMB’s Editorial Board, together with Prof. Troelsgård, we wish to thank all of you who have protested against the discontinuation and consequent loss of a precious research tradition, and have helped us to explain to the university authorities the true value of the MMB. Your support has been precious. MMB’s Editorial Board looks forward to continuing its collaboration with all the scholars who are engaged in research on Byzantine chant, especially as we seek new ways of sustaining the project in the longer term.

Yours sincerely,

ON BEHALF OF THE MMB EDITORIAL BOARD

Prof. Nicolas BELL (Trinity College, Cambridge)
Prof. Francesco D’AIUTO (University of Rome “Tor Vergata”)
Prof. Sysse Gudrun ENGBERG (University of Copenhagen, emerita)
Prof. Christian HANNICK (Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, emeritus)
Prof. Christian THODBERG (University of Aarhus, emeritus)
Prof. Gerda WOLFRAM (University of Vienna, emerita)
and
Prof. John D. BERGSAGEL (former Director of MMB; University of Copenhagen, emeritus)
Prof. Tore Tvarnø LIND (secretary of MMB; University of Copenhagen)