Call for Papers: ‘The Limits of Exactitude’

Prolepsis’ 4th International Conference, Università degli Studi di Bari ‘Aldo Moro’, Bari, Italy, 19-20 December 2019

Deadline: 30 June 2019

Keynote speaker: Prof. Therese Fuhrer (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)

Exactitude is the third of the Six Memos for the Next Millennium by Italo Calvino (Cambridge MA, 1988). According to Calvino ‘exactitude’ is a «well-defined and well-calculated plan for the work in question; an evocation of clear, incisive, memorable images […]; a language as precise as possible both in the choice of words and in the expression of the subtleties of thought and imagination». The aim of Prolepsis’ 4th International Conference is to reflect on Calvino’s definition applying it to the Classical, Late-Antique and Medieval Worlds. This year the conference will be particularly keen on – but not limited to – the following topics:

– Accuratio vel ambiguitas in speech, argumentation and narration.
– Ambiguous, inaccurate and disconcerting communication from the author, and potential reader response.
– Metrical and musical exactitude and its limits.
– Exactitude in treatises (scientific, rhetorical, grammatical).
– Quoting, misquoting and misplacing.
– Accurate and inaccurate titles, and their transmission.
– Limits in the material evidence (manuscripts, papyri, inscriptions, formation of corpora, mise en page, stichometry).
– Exactitude, doubt, ambiguity in the history of transmission (from ancient lexica, etymologica, and commentaries to modern scholarship).
– Examples of Exactitude and Ambiguity in Ancient and Modern Translations.
– Exactitude and Ambiguity in ancient and modern reception.
– Hypercorrection, lacunae, conjectures and obsession for completeness.
– Exactitude in historical and documentary reconstructions.
– Beginnings and endings of ancient and medieval works: doubtful and exact endings, incipit ex abrupto, etc.
– Finished and Unfinished / Clear and Unclear / Perfect and Imperfect in the philosophical reflection.

The participation in the conference as speaker is open to postgraduate students and early career researchers. To participate send an e-mail to by the 30th of June 2019.

The e-mail must contain the following pdf attachments:
1. An anonymous abstract of approximately 300 words (excluding references) and in English. You should specify if the abstract is for an oral presentation or a poster.
2. A short academic biography with name and affiliation.

Proposals will be evaluated through double-blind peer review by scholars in the Humanities.

The proposal evaluation will be carried out based on the following criteria: consistency, clarity, originality, methods. All abstracts, including those in proposed panels, will be reviewed and accepted on their own merits. Please note that this review is anonymous. Your anonymous abstract is the sole basis for judging your proposed paper for acceptance.

Papers should be 20 minutes in length plus 10 minutes for discussion. The languages admitted for the presentation are English and Italian. Selected papers will be considered for publication. Italian speakers will be required to provide an English handout, power point, and possibly a translation/translated summary of their paper.

Proposals for coordinated panels (three papers reaching 90 min. in total, discussion included) and posters are most welcome. Posters should be written in Italian or English.

Expenses for travel and accommodation will not be covered. For any inquiries write to, we would be glad to help you find solutions.

Summer School: Messors Workshops

Puglia, Italy

See here for information on Messors, a program focused on the preservation of cultural heritage and Byzantine sites that has been running in Puglia region – Italy for the last 20 years.

The program includes workshops that are an opportunity for participants (students/trainees/volunteers who might be interested in participating) to learn about the history of the region, learn about conservative methods and techniques while contributing to the conservation of the rich artistic and historical heritage of Southern Italy.

Workshop dates for 2019 are:

Art Restoration Workshop Fresco Fine Art June 28 -July 12; July 18 – August 1

Fornello Sustainable Preservation Project August 7 – 18 (This project aims to restore and preserve the Byzantine site of Fornello which contains a multidisciplinary approach to cultural heritage conservation.)