Monday, November 29, 2010

Feeling Objects in London

Birbkeck's 'Feeling Objects' reading group meets again on Friday 3rd December, from 6-8pm. The theme is: 'Reception: Laughter and Amazement'. It will take place in the first floor rooms of 32 Tavistock Square (please press the 'Birkbeck Theatre Studies' buzzer to get in). You can find further details and the copies of all the reading here:

Feeling Objects is an informal reading group that aims to consider how we might think about, describe, categorise, and respond to objects. We’re particularly interested in considering the relationship between subject and object; in the sense of delight that objects sometimes induce, and ways in which this delight might be critically useful; and about the idea of objects having agency in the world.

We hope to see you there!

Best wishes

Adam Smyth and Aoife Monks /

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Price of Peace

Lancaster University, Friday, 10 June, 2011

The discourse of peacemaking in the early modern period emphasised the benefits or commodities of peace. In peacetime the arts flourished, trade expanded, camaraderie and tranquillity reigned. Nevertheless, peace always came with a price, and not everyone in every occasion was willing to pay it. What was the price of peace in early modern Europe? What did peace require? What did parties entering into peace have to sacrifice in order to arrive at it? What was lost when peace was gained, and why were so many people on so many occasions unable to lose it? Answers from the records of art, music, history and literature are all encouraged.

Please submit proposals for 20-30-minute papers, in 200 words or less, by 1 February 2011, to Robert Appelbaum, Department of English and Creative Writing, Lancaster University,

The Italian Academies 1525-1700: the first intellectual networks of early modern Europe

A collaborative research project between the British Library, Royal Holloway University of London and the University of Reading, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Interdisciplinary one-day conference
London - Monday June 27th 2011

Science, learning and censorship

A one-day conference on this theme will be held on Monday June 27th 2011 in the central London premises of Royal Holloway University of London (11 Bedford Square).
The conference forms part of the AHRC funded research project The Italian Academies 1525-1700: the first intellectual networks of early modern Europe. This conference will build on the successful workshop Cultural Institutions in Early Modern Italy and Europe held in Reading in July 2008.

Academies represent a vital and characteristic dimension of early modern culture.
There were ca. 600 Academies in Italy in the period 1525-1700. Frequently international in membership, and in correspondence with scholars across Europe, they were fundamental to the development of the intellectual networks later defined as the 'République des Lettres', and to the dissemination of ideas in early modern Europe. Their membership included pioneering scientists, writers, artists, political thinkers, and representatives of both sexes and all social classes. The interests of the Academies ranged from the humanities, to the figurative and performance arts, natural sciences and medicine; many were interdisciplinary in their outlook and activities.
However, the social and cultural phenomenon of the Italian Academies has hitherto attracted relatively little research due in part to the wide range of their interests and difficulties in accessing relevant information.

Following the successful development of the Italian Academies Themed Collection database (, which covered academies in the cities of Padua, Bologna, Naples and Siena, the new phase of the project is now incorporating information on academies in Rome, Venice, Mantua, Ferrara and Sicily. Alongside this continuing development, we are promoting the development and dissemination of new research on the Italian learned Academies in the early modern period.

The one-day conference aims to explore research questions raised by the activities of Academies in this period, in particular those relating to links between the developments of science, broadly understood, and book production and circulation in early modern Europe (to ca 1700).
Among the most cogent research questions raised by the activities of Academies in this period and in these cities are:

• What is the place of Academies in counter-reformation culture?
• Did the Academies play a role in protecting ‘sensitive’ texts and authors ‘at risk’ from the censors?
• What role did academies play in the development of secular and scientific culture in the seventeenth century? How did they contribute to the development of international intellectual networks?
• How far was print publication used by Academies or Academicians to disseminate scientific developments?

Proposals for papers (20 minutes in length) addressing these and similar topics relating to the publishing of scientific discoveries and experiments, the operation of censorship in early modern Italy, and the impact of this on the development of science and intellectual endeavour in the period are now invited. Please send proposals together with a short abstract by Monday January 31st 2011.

The keynote lecture will be given by Professor Paula Findlen, Ubaldo Pierotti Professor in Italian History, University of Stanford, CA. The workshop will conclude with a round table discussion hosted by Professor Brian Richardson, Professor of Italian Language, University of Leeds.

A limited number of bursaries are available for postgraduate students.

For further information and to submit proposals for papers (title and abstract) please contact Professor Jane E.Everson - email:

Monday, November 22, 2010

Historicizing Sex

Melissa E. Sanchez writes:

Please mark your calendars for “Historicizing Sex: A State of the
Field Conference in Early Modern Gender and Sexuality Studies,” which
will take place at Penn on Friday, March 18, 2011. "Historicizing Sex”
will feature seven eminent scholars who will discuss the relationship
between historical inquiry and contemporary theory. How do we
understand the relations between past and present cultures? How do
the debates about race, empire, sovereignty, religion, and nationalism
that emerged in the early modern period intersect with gendered and
sexual ideals? How does attention to gender and sexuality complicate
or challenge traditional views of temporality and periodization? How
do feminist and queer theory intersect or diverge in discussions of
early modern representation of men, women, and their erotic desires
and practices?

Dympna Callaghan, Syracuse University, Professor of English
Richard Halpern, Johns Hopkins University, Professor of English
Coppélia Kahn, Brown University, Professor of English
Jeffrey Masten, Northwestern University, Professor of English and
Gender Studies
Patricia Parker, Stanford University, Professor of English and
Comparative Literature
Maureen Quilligan, Duke University, Professor of English
Richard Rambuss, Emory University, Professor of English and
Comparative Literature

"Historicizing Sex" is sponsored by a Mellon Cross-Cultural Contacts
Conference Grant and the English Department, History of Art
Department, History Department, Women's Studies Program and Alice Paul
Center, Comparative Literature Program, and Gender/Sexuality Studies
Group at the University of Pennsylvania.

Melissa E. Sanchez

Friday, November 19, 2010

Treachery and Turncoats

Stephen Brogan, President of the Birkbeck Early Modern Society writes:

Dr Andy Hopper, 'The Role of Treachery and Turncoats in Shaping Military and Political Strategies During the Civil Wars', 6.30 pm, Friday 26 Nov, Clore G01

You are warmly invited to our next paper, our first on the Civil Wars. Dr Andy Hopper is currently working on a book entitled Turncoats and Renegadoes: Changing sides during the English Civil Wars, and has published widely on the turmoil of the 1640s and 50s. For more information please visit:

It promises to be a lively evening and I look forward to seeing you there. Membership remains a mere £5 for the academic year and can be obtained at any of our events.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Cutting and Pasting, 1600-1900

Birkbeck's Material Texts Network has its first seminar on Thursday 18 November, 7.30-9pm -- 'Cutting and Pasting, 1600-1900', with papers from Luisa Cale, Vicky Mills, & Adam Smyth, chaired by Patrizia di Bello.

We'll be in Malet Street B30 (

All are welcome!

Monday, November 15, 2010

'Travel and encounters' at Birkbeck

Birkbeck Renaissance research seminar

Surekha Davies (History), ‘Maps, monsters, marvels and Marco Polo: travel writing and ethnographic authority, 1450-1550’

Carmen Fracchia (Iberian Studies), ‘The visual formation of slave subjectivity in Spain’.

Tuesday 30 November 7.30pm, in room 224, 43 Gordon Square. All welcome! Questions:

SUNY-Stony Brook Renaissance events

Paula Findlen, Ubaldo Pierotti Professor of Italian History and Chair
of the History Department, Stanford University
"The Painter's Knowledge: Art and Science in Seventeenth-Century Italy"
Thursday, Nov. 18 at 4:30pm, SUNY-Stony Brook, Humanities 1008.

Joseph Monteyne, Associate Professor, Art Department, Stony Brook University
"The Print Shop Window as Cultural Screen in Eighteenth-Century London"
Tuesday, Dec. 7 at 4:30pm, Humanities 1008.

Paul Firbas, Associate Professor, Department of Hispanic Languages and
Literature, Stony Brook University
"Moral Geographies: The Strait of Magellan in the Early Seventeenth Century"
Wednesday, March 2 at 4:30pm, Humanities 1008.

Peter Mancall, Professor of History and Anthropology, University of
Southern California
"Ecological Imaginings in the Sixteenth-Century Atlantic World"
Wednesday, May 4 at 4:30pm, Humanities 1008.
(note: this talk will be co-sponsored with the Coastlines series)

Questions to Alix Cooper at


November 1, 2010

The American University of Beirut is hosting a three-day conference on Shakespeare’s Imagined Orient on 4-6 May 2011. Speakers include Jonathan Burton (West Virginia University), Gerald Maclean (University of Exeter, UK), Margaret Litvin (Boston University) and Daniel Vitkus (Florida State University).

Shakespeare studies has recently experienced a noticeable and dramatic geographical shift. As the textual landscape of Shakespeare’s drama changes, it takes on new forms and now points to new horizons, namely the East and the Orient, and more particularly the Levant. From the blasted heaths of England, Shakespeare moves to the most arid and yet fertile soils of the Levant. The aim of the conference, in this emergent field, is to reconsider Shakespeare’s diffusion from both Pre and Postcolonial Middle Eastern perspectives and to examine Shakespeare’s critical relevance to understanding religion and politics on both a local scale (in the Middle East/the Orient) and globally. Reaching across disciplinary boundaries, Shakespeare’s Imagined Orient aims to prove how the critical and artistic reception of Shakespeare in the Orient is paramount to apprehending and reinventing Shakespeare as a cultural and social bridge uniting the “East” and the “West” in the landscape of global culture. The organisers of the conference hope to offer a critical insight into Shakespeare and Early Modern political theology that would help refashion, remap broader issues that engage the status of cultural and religious identity, nation, and individuality in the landscape of global culture.

With such issues in mind, we invite submissions concerning the following range of topics:

- Representations of the Orient in Shakespeare’s work,
- Christian/Muslim Representation/Interaction on Shakespeare’s/the Early Modern stage,
- Local/Global Shakespeare (from a Middle Eastern perspective),
- Shakespeare’s women and the Orient,
- Desire, Phantasm, and the Orient,
- Identity and Nationhood,
- Material Culture and the Imagined Orient on Shakespeare’s Stage.

Please send abstracts (300 words) or session proposals and brief CV by 15 January 2011. Notifications will be sent by 15 February 2011. On your abstract please include your name, institution, city and state or country, email address and phone number. E-mail your abstracts/session proposals as a Word file. Please note that each presentation is limited to 25 minutes (including questions).

Full details can be downloaded from the conference website at

Questions may be addressed to the conference chair: Prof. FX Gleyzon at Shakespeare&

Department of English
American University of Beirut
Fisk Hall, Rm 229
PO Box 11-0236
Beirut 1107 2020 – Lebanon

The conference is supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the British Council, the Anis K. Makdisi Program in Literature, the Office of the Provost and the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at the American University of Beirut.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Medieval Shakespeare: The Cultural Politics of Periodisation

On March 12, 2011, Birkbeck Medieval Seminar will host a one-day conference exploring the relationships and faultlines, contrasts and continuities, between ‘medieval’ and ‘early modern’ English culture.

* Lawrence Warner (University of Sydney)
* Helen Cooper (University of Cambridge)
* John Watts (Oxford University)
* Andy Wood (University of East Anglia)

When? 1.30pm–6pm, Saturday 12 March 2011
Where? Birkbeck, Malet Street, London WC1

This event is free but space is limited so it is crucial to reserve a place;
to do so please email Dr Anthony Bale,

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Court Studies

Seminars are held at 6pm at The Georgian Group, 6 Fitzroy Square, London W1T 5DX. The Annual General Meeting will take place at 5.45 pm on 20 June, immediately preceding the seminar paper.

14 February

Edward Town (Sussex University and the National Trust) and

Olivia Fryman (Kingston University and Historic Royal Palaces)

Fabricating a Courtier House: Lionel Cranfield at Chelsea, 1619-1624

14 March

Professor Miles Taylor (Institute of Historical Research)

The Diamond Jubilee of 1897: The Making and Unmaking of a Royal Event

4 April

Professor J. R. Christianson (Luther College Iowa)

Science and Religion at the Court of Denmark, 1550-1596

9 May

Dr Marika Keblusek (Leiden University)
Three 'First Ladies' in The Hague: Rivalries and Alliances at the Courts of Mary Stuart, Elizabeth of Bohemia and Amalia van Solms

20 June

Dr Jonathan Spangler (Manchester Metropolitan University)

Another Charles Restored in 1660?: The Re-establishment of the Court of Charles IV of Lorraine

3 October

Dr Barrie Cook (British Museum)

“The King offereth but only Gold”: Coins and Royal Ceremony in Tudor and early Stuart England

14 November

Dr Gordon Higgott (St Paul’s Cathedral) and Dr A. V. Grimstone (Pembroke College, Cambridge)

Edward Pearce senior (fl. 1630-d.1658): Decorative Artist, Landscape Painter and Collaborator of Inigo Jones

12 December

Dr Erin Griffey (University of Auckland)

Behind Closed Doors: Storing Household Goods at the Stuart Courts

The Marprelate Tracts

A one day conference to be held at the Shakespeare Institute, Stratford upon Avon, 9th April 2011 (closing date for proposals: 17th Jan 2011)

With an opening lecture from Dr. Joseph L Black (University of Massachusetts,
Amherst), editor of 'The Martin Marprelate Tracts', Cambridge University Press

Inspired by the recent publication of the first new edition of the Tracts for
nearly a century, this day conference seeks to position the publication of the
Tracts not only as a pivotal event in the history of
English polemic and religious writing but also as something which redefined the
terms in which religious politics in early modern England were debated
publicly. Initially produced and circulated during 1588 and 1589, the Tracts
were published on a secret press transported around the country under cover of
darkness. Many of those involved in the production of the Tracts had close ties
to the county of Warwickshire and its neighbours and defining their publication
as a Midlands event is
something the conference will seek to address. The historical background to the
tracts will be considered, along with the wider pressures that faced those
seeking further Protestant reform during this period and the way in which this
gave rise to an environment in which the Tracts were
conceived, written and produced. Despite the widespread dissemination of the
Tracts and the dramatic response of the Elizabethan regime to their
publication, many questions remain unanswered.
• Are we able to attribute authorship of the Tracts to any one person?
• How far did their publication reflect existing rivalries over religious
• In what ways did they change the production and nature of pamphlets during
both the Elizabethan period and into the seventeenth century?
• Who read the Tracts and how did they respond to them?

Brief proposals (c. 200 words) should be submitted for papers lasting c. 20 --
25 minutes while proposals for shorter papers lasting c. 10 minutes to be
presented in round table discussion are also very welcome, particularly where
they represent new perspectives on the Tracts or their wider influence.

Topics might include: the reception of the Tracts in towns and cities; the
dissemination and production of pamphlets in Elizabethan England; stylistic and
literary analysis of the Tracts or aspects of them; the Elizabethan reading
public; the Presbyterians and the bishops; the influence of the Tracts on the
pamphleteers of the 1640s.

All enquiries and/or proposals should be sent to Cathryn Enis, by Monday 17th January 2011

Conference advisors: Professor Ralph Houlbrooke and Dr Helen Parish, Department
of History

Research Fellowships

France’s National Centre for Scientific Research is offering tenured
Research Fellowships in the Humanities.
The IRCL (Institute for Research in the Renaissance, the neo-Classical age and
the Enlightenment), a joint research centre of the CNRS and the university of
Montpellier III, welcomes applications in the field of Shakespearean and Early
Modern Studies, ideally within the compass of, or able to interact with, the
centre’s areas of interest in those fields.
Research Fellows recruited by the CNRS and attached to the IRCL would be
expected to live in or near Montpellier and actively participate in the life of
the centre.
Anyone interested in considering applying or wishing for further information or
guidance should contact the director of the IRCL, Professor Nathalie
Vienne-Guerrin, at: A recommendation is
Applications should reach the CNRS between December 1, 2010 and January 1, 2011.
The monthly salary starts at £2,100 net. Research Fellows are attached to a
research centre of the CNRS in the relevant field.
There is no age limit but recruitments suggest that the CNRS favours young
applicants in their late twenties and certainly under 40.
A good knowledge of written and spoken French is imperative, since the
two-tiered procedure is entirely in French, as follows:
1/ Applications are assessed by a board of Research Fellows at the national
level: CV, PhD, publications, planned research project
2/ Interview, bearing essentially on the research project
For more information on the CNRS and careers at the CNRS Website of the CNRS:

Friday, November 05, 2010

*God's Word in English*

*The King James Version as Translation*

24**-**25 March 2011, Antwerp and Leuven, Belgium

Dead line for abstracts: 30 November 2010

The year 2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King
James Version, undoubtedly the most important English translation of the Bible. Though
this version is today often associated with Fundamental Evangelical Christian circles, its historical importance and its cultural and artistic impact cannot be overlooked. To commemorate the 400th anniversary of the publication, *SIG VERBI*, an international research group of *CETRA *under the auspices of the faculties of Theology and Arts of the *K.U.Leuven *and the Department of Translation Studies of the *Lessius University* *College *(Antwerp), is holding a conference. The conference fits into
the events to commemorate the Protestant and Catholic Reformations, organized by *Refo500*, of which the K.U.Leuven is a project partner. The aim of the conference is to present research on this remarkable version of the Bible primarily from the perspective of translation, including the effects this piece of translation have exercised on various areas of religious and popular culture, and especially on the theory and practice of translation.

*Confirmed speakers *include, among others, prof. dr. Stephen Prickett
(University of Kent),

prof. dr. Gordon Campbell (University of Leicester), prof. dr. Guido
Latré (U.C.Louvain & UGent),

prof. dr. Amanda Piesse (Trinity College) and prof. dr. Tibor Fabiny

*Thursday 24 March, 2011 in Lessius (Antwerpen)*

1. Historical Session

? The Low Countries as Historical Context of the KJV

? The origin/history of the KJV within the history of (English) Bible

? How did contemporary political issues effect the translation of the KJV?

? How did the KJV effect contemporary politics?

2. Literary/Cultural Session

? The Low Countries as translation milieu

? The effects of the KJV as a translation on literature/music/performing
arts ,etc.

? The influence of the KJV on later biblical and non-biblical
translations (e.g. on Jewish

translations of the TaNaK, English translations of the Qur'an)

? Good/bad practices in (Bible) translation that are influenced by the KJV

? The use of KJV quotations and allusions in secular texts and their

*Friday 25 March, 2011 at the Faculty of Theology (K.U.Leuven)*

3. Exegetical Session

? Contemporary exegesis & its influence on the translation of the KJV

? The influence of the KJV on contemporary and later exegesis

4. Practical Theology Session

? KJV & the translatability of religious texts

? KJV & feminist/post-colonial studies

? KJV & inter-religious dialogue

? Fundamentalist Bible readings & King James Onlyism

The above list is not meant to be exclusive or restrictive. All
suggestions for papers relating to

the topic of the conference's theme will be taken into consideration. We
welcome paper

submissions from graduate students.

It is anticipated that the allocated time for each paper will be *30
minutes*, with additional time

for questions/discussion.

Please submit your *abstract (max. 500 words) by 30 November 2010 to Dr.
Gergely Juhász*:


Notification of acceptance by 15 December 2010.

Details of accommodation in Leuven or in Antwerp and a booking form will
be available soon

from the conference organizers and on the websites of the Faculty of

( and of Lessius
University College

( For further enquiries please contact either of the
organisers Dr. Gergely Juhász

( or Dr. Paul Arblaster
( It is hoped that (selected) papers from
the conference will be published in a volume
edited by Dr Arblaster and Dr Juhász.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Animals and Humans in the Culture of the Middle Ages and Renaissance

The Twenty-Second Barnard Medieval and Renaissance Conference
December 4, 2010

Online Registration now open at

Schedule of Events

Registration and Morning Coffee

9:00-9:30 a.m.

Plenary Speakers

9:30 a.m.-12:00 noon

Bruce Holsinger, University of Virginia

"Archive of the Animal "

Laurie Shannon, Northwestern University

"Night-Rule: Empires of the Nonhuman in the Environs of Shakespeare"



First Afternoon Session

1:30-3:00 p.m.

I. Permeable Boundaries

Moderator : Timea Szell, Barnard College

Susan Crane, Columbia University

"Animal Hosts and Guests in Irish Saints' Lives"

Nicola McDonald, University of York, UK

"Fowl Intimacies and Fishy Issues"

Cecilia Bonnor, Fordham University

" 'Thise Been the Cokkes Wordes, and nat Myne': Using Animal Studies to
Interrogate the Boundaries between Human and Non-Human Agency in /The
Nun's Priest's Tale/"

Eleonora Stoppino, University of Illinois

" 'Non solamente l'uomo all'uomo': Animal, Contagion, and Prophylaxis in
Boccaccio's /Decameron/"

II. Knowing and Unknowing Animals

Moderator: Peter Platt, Barnard College

Nicola Masciandaro, Brooklyn College, The City University of New York

"Unknowing Animals"

Tobias Menely, Miami University

"Hobbes's Animals"

Leonard Lawlor, Penn State University

" 'Nature Must Hide': An Extension of Foucault's /History of Madness/"

III. Animals and the Law

Moderator: Joel Kaye, Barnard College

Marco Iuffrida, University of Bologna

"Barbarian Dogs in Early Medieval Legal Sources"

Aaron Vanides, Yale University

"Henttastir Lutir: Sheep Charters and the North Atlantic Legal Discourse"

Allie Terry-Fritsch, Bowling Green State University

" Execution by Image: Early Modern Spectacles of Animal Prosecution and

IV. Animal Rites

Moderator: Keith Moxey, Barnard College

Andrew G. Miller, DePaul University

"Tail Mutilation and the Message of Violence in Medieval England/ /"

Edward Bever, SUNY College at Old Westbury

"Animals and Witchcraft"

Chriscinda Henry, Yale University

" 'Una bizzaria da Ridere?': Animal-Human Substitution and the Spectacle
of Pain in Renaissance Trent"


3:00-3:30 p.m.

Second Afternoon Session

3:30-5:00 p.m.

V. Animals on Display

Moderator: Phillip Usher, Barnard College

Miriam Ali de Unzaga, Universidad Complutense

"Connections between Islamic Textiles, Bestiaries, and Animal Treaties:
The Animal Repertory in the Ona Embroidery"

Carlee A. Bradbury, Radford University

"Anti-Semitism and Animals: Beyond the Bestiary"

Patricia Lurati, Independent Scholar

"Furs and Eroticism in 14^th and 15^th -century Art"

Ellen Konowitz, SUNY New Paltz

"Jan van Eyck's /Arnolfini Double Portrait/: a Dog, a Brush, and a Set
of Shoes"

VI. Hybrid Forms

Moderator: Christopher Baswell, Barnard College

Lynley Anne Herbert, University of Delaware and Walters Art Museum

"Monstrous Saints, Holy Hybrids: Exploring the Multivalency of
Zoo-anthropomorphic Evangelist Symbols"

Maria Frangos, University of California Santa Cruz

"Werewolves, Bird-Knights, and Serpent-Women: Queering the Hum-animal"

Valerie Gramling, University of Massachusetts Amherst

" 'Feete as an edder, a maydens face':
The Slippery Transformations of the Edenic Serpent in the English
Mystery Plays"

VII. The Wolf

Moderator: Achsah Guibbory, Barnard College

Francesca Sautman, Hunter College, The City University of New York

"Wolfish Appetites, Devouring Illnesses : The Wolf in the French Late
Medieval Imaginary"

Jeanne Provost, Austin College

"Werewolf Love and Cyborg Law in /William of Palerne/"

Carla Freccero, University of California Santa Cruz


VIII. Speaking of Animals

Moderator: Anne Prescott, Barnard College

Jeannie Miller, New York University

" 'Cats Have Five Words': Animal Language and al-Jahiz's Theory of the
Human as a Microcosm"

Carolynn Van Dyke, Lafayette College

"Name It and Claim It? Appellation and Agency in Medieval Animal Texts"

Emily Vasiliauskas, Princeton University

"Hieronymus Fabricius of Aquapendente's /De brutorum loquela/"

Plenary Panel


"Animal Methodologies"

Moderator: Susan Crane, Columbia University

Aranye Fradenberg, University of California Santa Barbara

Karl Steel, Brooklyn College, The City University of New York

Sarah Stanbury, College of the Holy Cross

Julian Yates, University of Delaware


7:00-8:00 p.m.


$35 Registration fee (includes continental breakfast, coffee breaks and
wine reception)

$30 Barnard alumnae

$10 students and senior citizens

$15 Buffet lunch

Please email Laurie Postlewate for details on conference registration: or call (212) 854-2053.

Online registration through PayPal available at


Interdisciplinary conference, Jesus College Oxford, 21-22 May 2011. Speakers include David Norbrook and Blair Worden


Ancient Rome was a source of endless fascination to the early moderns.
Historians, politicians, divines, and imaginative writers looked to the
Roman example for models and inspiration. The aim of the conference is to
reassess the place of ancient Rome in the literary and political culture of
late Tudor and early Stuart England. In what ways did the translation and
reception of the Roman classics stimulate the native literary tradition or
influence its political outlook? What was the impact of the Roman precedent
on attitudes towards constitutional change, the rights and wrongs of empire,
and the law? How did it influence ecclesiastical policy and, more generally,
the views of the relationship between church and state? In what ways did
Roman historiography, political writings, and rhetoric shape the language
and substance of public argument? What was the trajectory of circulation in
manuscript and print of the Roman classics? What were the uses and topical
appeal of the Roman models in the wider public world and in education? How
did the Roman legacy compare with that of ancient Greece?

Our aim is to foster dialogue among literary scholars, classicists,
political and intellectual historians, historians of religion, specialists
in the history of the book, and historians of historiography. Bringing
together scholars representing diverse disciplines and approaches, the
conference will encourage reconsideration of much received wisdom about the
place of ancient Rome in early modern England's literature and political
imagination. It will, we hope, raise new questions about, inter alia, the
shaping influence of the Roman example upon formal properties and topical
undercurrents of imaginative literature, sermons, and polemical writings;
upon conceptions of public institutions and the individual's relationship to
them; upon views of foreign policy and international relations as also
military theory and practice; upon emergent confessional divisions and
incipient notions of religious toleration; and, finally, upon perceptions of
social relations in urban, above all metropolitan contexts. No less
important will be to assess the utility and pervasiveness of romanitas
before and after the union with Scotland, and compare the situation in
England with major European states, in particular, France, Spain, Italian
principalities, and the Netherlands.

We invite proposals for 30-minute papers. Please e-mail abstracts of no more
than 500 words to Felicity Heal ( or Paulina
Kewes ( by 30 January 2011.

The Oxford gathering is a follow-up to the conference on 'Ancient Rome and
Early Modern England: History, Politics, and Political Thought' to be held
at the Huntington Library, 21-22 January 2011. For further information,
please contact Carolyn Powell (
FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from