Friday, September 28, 2012

Transforming Early Modern Identities

 Early Modern Interdisciplinary Group, 
The City University of New York Graduate Center, 
Friday 12th October

London Shakespeare Centre and the Arts and Humanities Festival, 
King’s College London, 
Saturday 27th October

To register for the London day of this conference, and to view a draft programme, please follow this link:

To register for the New York day of this conference, and to view a draft programme, please follow this link:

This conference, hosted over two days in two cities, has a double focus. ‘Transforming Early Modern Identities’ will examine both how the concept of the early modern self is being transformed by recent scholarly works exploring early modern literature and culture, and also how the process of transformation itself was foundational to the ways in which early modern subject positions were negotiated. In the twenty-first century, we remain fascinated with notions of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century subjectivity. Whilst past conferences have focused on exploring specific strata of early modern selfhood – in terms of gender, sexuality, race or class – this conference will examine both the ways in which scholarly considerations of the early modern subject have changed in recent years, and also how times of transformation work to shape early modern identities.

Thus, the aims of this conference are twofold: to understand the ways in which early modern scholarship (historical and literary) has transformed our notion of early modern subjectivity in recent years; and to examine the ways in which transformation itself – and the in between times of selfhood it implies – played an important part in defining various early modern subject positions. How has the way scholars examine the early modern self changed in the last twenty years? How reliant are early modern individuals on moments of transformation?

Theatrum Mundi: Latin Drama in Renaissance Europe

Magdalen College, University of Oxford,
12-14 September 2013

call for papers

Organized by the Society for Neo-Latin Studies in tandem with the Centre for Early Modern Studies, Oxford, the conference will bring together scholars to discuss early modern Latin drama, a form pivotal to the development of educational practice and literary composition across Europe. Culturally conspicuous, often ideologically engaged, original Latin plays were the pedagogical lifeblood of Renaissance schools, colleges, academies and universities. Scholars of Renaissance drama tend to focus on vernacular plays while overlooking the fact that many dramatists honed their talents at, for instance, institutional theatres constructed at the Elizabethan universities or nurtured at the French Jesuit colleges by the ancien régime. Our conference aims both to remedy such oversight and to stimulate new thought about this pan-European dramatic phenomenon.

Confirmed speakers include Thomas Earle (Oxford), Alison Shell (UCL), and Stefan Tilg (Ludwig Boltzmann Institute, Innsbruck). Proposals are sought for twenty-minute papers on any aspect of early modern Latin drama, which might discuss but are not limited to the following topics:

·                     Student life
·                     Religious conformity and dissent
·                     Philosophical engagement
·                     Relationships between Latin and vernacular plays
·                     Pedagogy and rhetorical training
·                     Patronage and support

Please send your proposal and any questions about the conference to Sarah Knight, University of Leicester ( by December 31 2012. Proposals should include a provisional title, approx. 150-200 words outlining your paper, and contact details.

Postgraduate and post-doctoral bursaries may be available, and some accommodation has been pre-booked at Worcester College, Oxford: if you would like to be considered either for a bursary or for college accommodation, please indicate this when you submit your proposal.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Florence - May 2013
“summer’s lease hath all too short a date”
You are invited to spend a week with
Shakespeare in Florence, exploring his work,
his engagement with Italy and the
Renaissance contexts of his work. Sessions
will be held at the British Institute of Florence
in the Palazzo Lanfredini and will include
playreadings, lectures on Renaissance
iconography, classical mythology and maps,
as well as excursions to the Uffizi gallery and
Boboli gardens.
No prior experience is necessary; all welcome!
Dates: 13th – 17th May 2013
Convener: Dr Victoria Bladen, The University of
Limited to 20 places.
Cost: 500 euros or 400 euros for full-time
students. (10% discount for payment by 30
November 2012)
Monday 13th May:
10am-12 - Introduction to Shakespeare: This
introductory session will look at Shakespeare’s life, the public theatres, and the
historical, political, and religious contexts of early modern England.
2pm – 5pm – Shakespeare and Rome: How does
Shakespeare imagine Rome in his work? What did Rome mean for his early
modern audience? This session will include readings of excerpts from Titus
Andronicus, Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra and the poem The Rape of
Tuesday 14th May:
10am – 12 – Myth and iconography: This session will
look at the engagement with classical mythology in Renaissance and Baroque
art. What were the most popular myths from Ovid’s Metamorphoses for artists
and writers and how were they depicted? We will also look at excerpts from
Shakespeare’s Venus and Adonis and the iconography of Botticelli’s Birth of
Venus and Primavera in preparation for the Uffizi gallery visit.
2pm – 5pm – Excursion to the Uffizi gallery
Wednesday 15th May: Shakespeare and Venice
10am – 12: This session will explore The Merchant of Venice with
readings of excerpts from the play and consideration of the relevant historical
and religious contexts including: how Venice was imagined, Judaism and
attitudes to usury.
2pm – 5pm: The afternoon session will begin by looking at medieval
and Renaissance maps and how early moderns conceived of the world and
different human races. We will then look at some excerpts from Othello, set in
Venice and Cyprus.
Thursday 16th May:
10am – 12: Shakespeare and the Natural
World This session will look at Shakespeare’s engagement with nature. His
work is full of natural imagery and metaphors; gardens and forests are used to
create evocative spaces in which episodes of the plays are set while trees and
plants often function as political metaphors or to express personal attributes of
characters. This session will also look at the symbolism and iconography of
trees and gardens in the Renaissance in preparation for our visit to the Boboli
2pm – 5pm – Excursion to the Boboli garden
Friday 17th May: Shakespeare and Love
10am – 12: This session will explore Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare’s
well known tragic love story, set in Verona. We’ll be doing some readings of
excerpts from the play and focusing on Shakespeare’s language in articulating
the excesses of passionate love.
2pm – 5pm: For our final session we’ll be looking at Shakespeare’s
sonnets, reading a selection and exploring the writer’s ideas of immortality
through poetry.
About the presenter:
Dr Victoria Bladen teaches in Shakespeare and early modern literature at The
University of Queensland, Australia and has published three Shakespearean text
guides in the Insight Publications (Melbourne) series: Romeo and Juliet (2010), Julius
Caesar (2011) and Henry IV Part 1 (2012), as well as articles in the French
Shakespeare on Screen series (The Roman Plays, Hamlet and Othello (forthcoming)).
She has published on tree and garden imagery in the poetry of Andrew Marvell, on
representations of Zeus in early modern culture and is currently working on a book
project The Tree of Life in the Early Modern Imagination, based on her doctoral
research. Victoria is co-editing the Macbeth on Screen volume and is on the editorial
board for the Shakescreen in Francophonia project in France. She has presented
conference papers in Australia, New Zealand and France, and convenes the annual
Shakespeare Summer School programme at The University of Queensland, Australia.
In 2011 she was a recipient of a Shakespeare Birthplace Trust Travel Award for the
World Shakespeare Congress in Prague. In 2013 she will be a presenting an invited
paper at The University of Ferrara, Italy, on Shakespearean quotations in Australian

Monday, September 24, 2012

Reading Conference in Early Modern Studies, 9-11 July 2013

Early Modern Research Centre, University of Reading

The Reading Early Modern Conference continues to establish itself as the place where early
modernists meet each July for stimulation, conversation and debate. As in previous years,
proposals of individual papers and panels are invited on research in any aspect of early
modern studies relating to Britain, Europe and the wider world. This year, the plenary speakers are Virginia Cox, New York University, and Ben Kaplan, UCL.

We would welcome proposals for individual papers and panels on any aspect of early
modern literature, history, art, music and culture. Panels have been proposed on the
following themes and further panels or individual papers are also invited on these topics or
any other aspect of early modern studies:

·         plague and disease in early modern Europe
·         crime, punishment and the law
·         the Dutch Golden Age and Anglo-Dutch relations
·         varieties of protestantism
·         memory and history
·         beyond republicanism: paradigms and traditions in early modern political thought
  • literature and sociability
  • Drama and theatre culture: spectacle,  performance spaces and practices
  • making and using books

Proposals for panels should consist of a minimum of two and a maximum of four papers.
Each panel proposal should contain the names of the session chair, the names and
affiliations of the speakers and short abstracts (200 word abstracts) of the papers together
with email contacts for all participants. A proposal for an individual paper should consist of
a 200 word abstract of the paper with brief details of affiliation and career.

Proposals for either papers or panels should be sent by email to the chair of the
Conference Committee, Dr. Rachel Foxley, by 7 January 2013,

We welcome proposals from postgraduates, and the conference hopes to make
some money available for postgraduate bursaries. Anyone for whom some financial
assistance is a prerequisite for their attendance should mention this when submitting
their proposal.

Institute of Historical Research: Society, Culture and Belief, 1500-1800

The programme for the academic year 2012-3 is on the theme of TIME
Convenors: Laura Gowing (King’s College London), Kate Hodgkin (University of East London) and Michael Hunter (Birkbeck).

Seminars will take place in Room G21A, Senate House, London, WC1, on the following Thursdays at 5.30 p.m. All are welcome!

11 October
Kate Hodgkin (UEL)
Family Time: Women, Lineage and Memory in Seventeenth-Century England

1 November
Rosalind Carr (UEL)
The Scottish Enlightenment after Dark

6 December
Kat Hill (Oriel),
Chronicling the Lutheran Reformation: history and memory in the work of Cyriacus Spangenberg

17 January
Mark Curran (Queen Mary)
Time and Uncertainty in the Enlightenment Book Trade

14 February
Lynn Botelho (Fulbright Scholar, King’s College London)
The Changing Nature of a "Good Old Age'" in Early Modern England

14 March
Brodie Waddell (Birkbeck)
The Present State of England

9 May
Caroline Watkinson (IHR Fellow) – room tbc
Ritualising Time in an Age of Revolution:  Exiled English Nuns, Cyclical History, and the French Revolution

Sussex Centre for Early Modern Studies

All talks in the English Social Space (B274), Arts B, Sussex University from 6-7.30.

1st. semester 
Oct 2: Andy Kesson (University of Kent), ‘Euph culture: John Lyly's Euphues as early modern celebrity’
Oct. 24 [note Wednesday not Tuesday]: Gordon McMullan (King’s College, London), ‘”A numerous fleet of cormorants black,/That sailed insulting o'er the wrack”: a history of greed in Shakespeare, Marvell and Milton’
Oct 30: Jenny Richards (University of Newcastle), ‘Reading aloud and talking about The Womans Book in early modern England.’
Nov. 13: Sjoerd Levelt (University of Sussex), 'Medieval Chronicles in the Early Modern Period'
Nov. 27: Chloe Porter (University of Sussex), ‘Going Unseen: Material Invisibility in Early Modern Drama’
Dec. 11: Robert Appelbaum (Uppsala University), ‘Terrorism Before the Letter, 1559-1642’
Dec. 18: Christmas Quiz, Shakespeare’s Head Pub, Brighton

2nd. semester
Jan 29: Cynthia Herrup (University of Southern California), 'A crisis of mercy?: Charles II's pardon of the Earl of Danby'
Feb. 12: Mark Nicholls (St. John’s College, Cambridge), ‘The Lost Art of Government: the Privy Council after 1603’
March 5: Charlotte Scott (Goldsmiths’ College, London), ‘Darkness Visible: Shakespeare's Macbeth and the Intervention of the Human’.
March 19: Alex Davis (University of St. Andrews), 'Out of Bounds: Fictions of Inheritance from The Tale of Gamelyn to As You like It'.
April 9: Laurie Maguire (Magdalen College, Oxford), 'Hail muse, etcetera'.
May 16: seminar at Petworth house.
 Late June/early July, CEMS conference, ‘Popes and Papistry in Early Modern England’ (details to be supplied later).

Colloquium on Cervantes and 17th Century Europe

1st March 2013

Dear all,
It is a great pleasure to announce an one-day colloquium on Cervantes and 17th Century European prose fiction to be hosted jointly by UCL and the Warburg Institute on 1st March 2013, 9 – 5pm. Details about registration will become available on the Warburg’s web page in early November: The poster can be downloaded via the following link: I look forward to seeing interested colleagues there, if you have any questions please get in touch, best wishes,

Dr Alexander Samson
Lecturer in Golden Age Literature
Department of Spanish and Latin American Studies
Gower Street
London WC1E 6BT
Tel: 020 7679 7121
Fax: 020 7679 3109

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Tragedy in Mid-Sixteenth Century Italy

CUNY Renaissance Study program's first event of the fall:

Daniel Javitch (Emeritus Professor, Comparative Literature, NYU)
"Thinking About Tragedy in Mid-Sixteenth Century Italy: Why Aristotle
Didn't Lay the Egg"

Sponsored by the Renaissance Studies Certificate Program

*Friday, September 21, *2:00-4:00pm, Room 9205, CUNY Graduate Center
(5th Ave between 34th & 35th Sts)

Reception to follow.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Conversations about literature ...

and food, and pop music, and advertising, and football, and film, and architecture...

Hamlet across the globe

On October 5, 2012, the Pearce Shakespeare Endowment at Rhodes College will host a symposium on adaptations and appropriations of Hamlet across the globe, in Arab, British, Chinese, and South African contexts:

Speakers include Alexander Huang (George Washington University), Nick Hutchison (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art), Margaret Litvin (Boston University), and David Schalkwyk (Folger Shakespeare Library).

Their lectures will be free and open to the public.

Co-sponsors include Rhodes programs in Asian Studies, British Studies at Oxford, English, International Studies, and Theatre.

Please contact Scott Newstok ( for further information.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Reevaluating the Literary Coterie, 1550-1825

Seminars at 6-8pm. At UCL; venue information to be announced shortly at

3rd October
Christine Gerrard (University of Oxford), A Scorpion in the Nest: Sexual Politics and the Hillarian Coterie, 1720-1725.
Felicity Roberts (King's College London), Mary Delany (1700-1788) and her membership of the Bluestockings

17th October
Jennifer Young (King's College London), Shakespeare and the Fleet Street Syndicate (1630-32)
Hannah Crawforth (King's College London), TBA

31st October
Gregory Dart (University College London), TBA
Will Bowers (University College London), 'A curious moving scene of all nations and languages’ - Holland House as salon or coterie. 

14th November
Arthur F. Marotti (Wayne State University), Concentric Literary Circles: Christ Church, Oxford Poetry and the Circulation of Manuscript Verse in Jacobean and Caroline England.
Steven W. May (University of Sheffield, Emory University), Coteries? What Coteries?

12th December
Helen Hackett (University College London), Re-evaluating sisterhood and female friendship in the manuscript verse miscellany of Constance Aston Fowler

For more information, please see:

UCL Centre for Early Modern Exchanges

Autumn 2012 Seminars
Wednesdays 4.30pm, Foster Court 114

10th October:  The Animal Face of Early Modern England
Erica Fudge (Strathclyde)

24th October: Shakespeare: Staging the World
Dora Thornton (Curator, British Museum)

28th November:  Catholic Archives and Collections
Jan Graffius (Stonyhurst College): ‘Bullworks Against Heresie’: Some Relics from the Sodality at St Omers
Fr Peter Harris (Honorary Archivist, English College Valladolid): ‘And did those feet in ancient time ...’: The archives of exile: The holdings of the Royal English College, Valladolid, Spain

For more information, please see

Staging the Restoration: Aphra Behn's The Rover

Monday 17 September, 18.30-20.00
Hampton Court Palace, Surrey, KT8 9AU

The astonishing Aphra Behn (1640-89) was one of the first professional
female writers. The Rover, her darkly comic play of cunning courtesans
and flirtatious fops, was hugely popular in its day; indeed, Charles II
was such a fan that he commissioned a private viewing. In July 2012 it
was staged within the Baroque apartments at Hampton Court Palace in a
contemporary style, to explore where historical and modern ideas of
beauty intersect and conflict.

Join the play’s producer, as well as historical theatre expert Tom
Betteridge and HRP’s Live Interpretation Manager Chris Gidlow, for
this unique panel discussion, as they explore how they staged The Rover
for the 21st century, and what it can tell us about its enduring themes
of sensuality, love and lust.

Tickets cost £12 and include a drinks reception. For further
information and booking, please call 0844 482 7799 or see our website at

Working it Out: A Day of Numbers in Early Modern Writing

Saturday 18th May 2013
                                    Keynes Library, Birkbeck College, University of London

Call for Papers
Early modern books are full of numbers, representing both practicality and mystery. This multidisciplinary conference explores numbers in British early modern literature and textual culture. How were numbers and numerical techniques used in drama, dance, and music? What were the practical issues arising from printing numerical texts, and how were numbers represented on the page? How were the index and the cross-reference created and used? To what extent would an early modern audience recognize mathematical references in literary texts and performance? Who would buy an arithmetic book and how might they use it?

Proposals for papers are invited on, but not confined to, the following subject areas:

-     Ways of counting and things to count: inventories and accounts; time and tempo; feet and metre.
-        Numbers in print: reference tables, logarithms, cross-referencing, indices.
-        Books on arithmetic, double-entry book-keeping and merchants’ handbooks.
-        Ciphering and deciphering.
-        The use of zero and other mathematical symbols in literature and drama.
-        Dance, music and other numerical art forms.
-        Making a reckoning: performing numbers on stage.
-        Numbers in the material text: ways of using numerical books, and their owners.
-        Mystical numbers, the kabala, numerology.
-        Mathematical methodologies; measuring, mapping and quantifying.

Confirmed speakers are:

-     Stephen Clucas, Birkbeck College, London.
-     Natasha Glaisyer, York.
-     Emma Smith, Hertford College, Oxford.
-     Adam Smyth, Birkbeck College, London.

We welcome proposals from researchers at all stages of their careers, working in departments of Literature, History, History of Science, Art History, Education, and other relevant subject areas. Proposals for 20-minute papers should include an abstract of no more than 250 words and a brief CV, and should be emailed to General questions can be directed to the conference organisers, Rebecca Tomlin and Katherine Hunt, at the same address.

All abstracts must be received by 15 January 2013

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


The EMPHASIS seminar on early modern philosophy and history of science, held in the School of Advanced Study (University of London, Senate House) in Bloomsbury begins its tenth series on Saturday 6 October 2012, 2-4pm (in room 104), when Dr Sarah Mortimer will be giving a paper entitled: ‘Hugo Grotius and Thomas Hobbes: Sacred History and Christian Commonwealths’ The other speakers this year are: Mark Burden, Hannah Dawson, Guido Giglioni, Eric Jorink James Lancaster, Thibaut Maus de Rolley, Simon Mills, Olivia Smith, Dario Tessicini and Ann Thomson The themes of this year’s sessions include: Philosophy in Dissenting Academies; The Royal Society and the Levant; Giordano Bruno and Copernicanism; Imagination and Locomotion in the Renaissance; Swammerdam, Steno and Spinoza’s Deus sive Natura; Living matter and early Enlightenment materialism. We also have joint sessions on Francis Bacon on mind and matter and Recent Research on John Locke. The organisers of the seminar are: Dr Stephen Clucas: Dr Anthony Ossa-Richardson (Queen mary, University of London): If you would like to be emailed a copy of the programme or be added to our email list please contact Dr Stephen Clucas:


Tuesday, September 11 Columbia University Seminar in the Renaissance Alan Stewart (Columbia) “The Strange Friendship of Edward and Gaveston: English History / French Politics / English Literature” Faculty House, Columbia University paper at 7.30; drinks 5:45 in the Faculty House bar; dinner starts at 6:30 Wednesday, September 12 [at Fordham] Fordham University Center for Medieval Studies Thomas O’Donnell (Fordham University) “Theoretical Lives: Community and the Literatures of High Medieval England” McGinley Center, Faculty Lounge 12 noon Sponsored by the Center for Medieval Studies, Fordham University: (718) 817-4655 Friday, September 14 Columbia University Seminar in Shakespeare Tanya Pollard (CUNY); Helene Foley (Columbia) respondent “Why Hecuba?” Social hour is from 5-6; dinner 6-7; the talk 7-8:30. Tuesday September 25 [at NYU] New York University Medieval and Renaissance Center Elisabeth van Houts “Conquest, Gender and Religion: the Women of Bury St Edmunds c. 1050-1100” 6:30-8 PM 19 University Place, Room 222 Wednesday September 26 Columbia University Medieval Guild Mary Carruthers (Remarque Professor of Literature, emerita, NYU) “Ordinary Beauty in the Middle Ages” 7:30pm (reception to follow lecture) Butler Library 523 For more information, contact Thursday, September 27-Saturday, September 29 [at Bard] Beyond Representation: An Interdisciplinary Approach to the Nature of Things This event is jointly sponsored by Bard Graduate Center and the Institute of Fine Art’s Mellon Research Initiative (NYU), and organized by Jas Elsner, Finbarr Barry Flood, and Ittai Weinryb. Multiple locations. For complete information, see

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Two Shakespeare lectures ...

18 October 2012: Senate House Library Friends: James Shapiro : 6.00pm: Senate House Library James Shapiro on the "Cowell" forgery. Details to be confirmed. If you would like to attend please notify; tel. 020 7862 8411. 5 December 2012: Inaugural Arden Shakespeare Lecture: René Weis : 6.00pm: Chancellor’s Hall. The first annual Arden Lecture, marking the publication of the new Arden Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet, 3rd series, editied by René Weis. Details to be confirmed. Free and open to all, and followed by a wine reception. If you would like to attend please notify

Friday, September 07, 2012

Eastern Resonances 2: India and the Far East

16th-18th centuries Paris, 5-7 December 2013 Contrary to 'the echo' or 'the trace', which both imply an enduring, but fading prolongation of a presence, 'resonance' suggests not only a continuation, but a reinforcement of a sound or image, provoked by a reflection on another surface. Taking from Stephen Greenblatt's definition of 'resonance' as 'the power of the object displayed to reach out beyond its formal boundaries to a larger world, to evoke in the viewer the complex, dynamic cultural forces from which it has emerged' ('Resonance and Wonder', in Learning to Curse, p. 170), this conference aims at studying the moves, shifts, transformations and translations through which the idea of the East resonated in Europe in general, and Britain in particular, from the early modern period to the romantic age. Calling into question the adversarial nature of Orientalism as defined by Edward Said, our conference will address the deterritorializations and reterritorializations (to borrow the concepts developed by Deleuze and Guattari in Anti-Odipus) through which the East reshaped itself in the West through its many reflections and reverberations. Our focus will not just be on what was lost and what was gained along the routes of such recuperations, but we also wish to chart in greater detail the routes themselves, the people who crossed them and the motivations underpinning these attempts at reaching, understanding and picturing the East. The first of our series of two conferences on 'Eastern Resonances', to be held at the University of Montpellier 3 (30 May-1 June 2013), will focus on the Ottoman Empire and Persia. Details about this conference and its programme can be found on . We are now welcoming proposals for the second conference, on India and the Far East, to be held at the University of Paris Diderot - Paris 7 (5-7 Dec. 2013). Suggested areas of reflection for this conference could include: 1) Texts and their circulation/translation: What were the Sanskrit, Chinese and other texts that resonated in the West in this period? Through what channels did manuscripts and books travel? Why and how did they reach Britain in adapted or translated forms? 2) Places and their memories: What did travellers look back to in historical and cultural terms as they embarked on their journeys to the East? What images did they bring back with them from their eastern encounters? How did these reverberate as literary and artistic artefacts at the receiving end of the journey? 3) Actors and intermediaries: Who went East or West, and why did they? Who were their interlocutors or mediators there? Why and how were 'contact zones' created? On what terms was trust granted and collaborative research carried on? For 'Eastern Resonances 2: India and the Far East', short proposals in English (250 words) and a brief biographical statement are to be sent by October 31, 2012 to the conference organisers: -Dr Claire Gallien, University of Montpellier 3 -Pr Jean-Marie Fournier, University of Paris 7 -Pr Ladan Niayesh, University of Paris 7 Papers should be 30 minutes in length and may be presented either in French or in English. We intend to publish a selected number of papers from the two conferences in a volume of essays on the topic of 'Eastern Resonances'.

Routine and Ritual in the post-medieval home

7th-9th September 2012, King’s Manor, University of York This conference seeks to shed new light on the material culture of both routine and ritual practices in post-medieval vernacular houses. In recent years, scholars across a range of disciplines have become increasingly interested in the potential of objects to shed light on social relationships and domestic practices within the family, household and neighbourhood. This has led to a rise in studies of inventories, as records of particular assemblages within the home, made at a particular moment in time, and of objects themselves, recovered through archaeological excavation or curated within museum collections. Such studies have made use of new theoretical and methodological approaches, such as the idea of ‘biographies’, and the power of objects in telling ‘stories’ about the past – and indeed the present. However, to date, much less attention has been paid to the spatial context of objects, and to the ways in which the groupings of objects recovered in excavation, recorded in contemporary documents or illustrations, or curated and displayed as Museum assemblages, can shed light on the social practices households from the early modern period, to the present day. Routine and Ritual seeks to being together academic and commercial archaeologists with scholars from other disciplines of cultural and local history, art history and the Museum profession, to discuss and debate the material culture of the post-medieval home and to facilitate dialogue across the disciplines and specialisms concerned with the interpretation of objects to academic and wider audiences. Contributors are asked to think about the relationships between the people who inhabited houses, domestic practices including ‘routine’ activities such as cooking and eating, sleeping, socialising and working, but also more nominally ‘ritual’ activities such as the ritual protection of the home, or the marking of life-cycle rituals such as birth, marriage and death. What role did possessions - buildings and objects - play in these activities? What can we say about the sensory experience both within and between different kinds of home – levels of light, heating, ventilation, the feel of furniture and furnishings, the smell of cooking, scent or sanitation? Rather than inviting contributors to speak on individual object specialisms, this conference seeks to consider both the methodological challenges posed by the ‘material turn’, and the potential of buildings and objects to answer some of the questions posed above. Confirmed speakers include: Alasdair Brooks, Craig Cessford, Pete Connelly, Timothy Easton, Ian Evans, David Gaimster, Tara Hamling, Vesa-Pekka Herva, Audrey Horning, Nigel Jeffries, Eleanor John, Freya Massey, Angela McShane, Andrew Morrall, Paul Mullins, Alastair Owen, Vesa-Pekka Herva, Sara Pennell, Philippa Puzey-Broomhead, Greig Parker, Catherine Richardson, Jayne Rimmer, Rosemary Weinstein. You can download the conference programme and book to attend from the folllowing web page: Conference Venue and Programme The conference will run from Friday 7th September to Sunday 9th September 2012. Registration will open at 5.00pm on Friday 7th for early arrivals and then from 9am on Saturday 8th. The conference sessions will run from 9.15am-5.00pm on Saturday, followed by a reception at DIG, sponsored by York Archaeological Trust and 9.15am to 4.00pm on Sunday. Tea, coffee and sandwich lunches will be provided. The venue for the conference is: The King’s Manor, University of York, Exhibition Square, York YO1 7EP. Details of how to find the venue can be found here: To plan your journey, use this site: Accommodation A range of different kinds of accommodation at different process can be booked through Visit York, the York Tourist Information Service, here. You can use the venue location postcode (YO1 7EP) to help you find a hotel or bed and breakfast close to The King’s Manor. Booking and Conference Fee The cost of attending the conference is £30. You can book and pay for conference attendance using the University of York’s online store: and selecting ‘conferences and events’. SPMA ‘Routine and Ritual’ should then appear. Please contact Kate Giles ( if you experience problems using this facility. The Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology is offering a number of student and conference registration bursaries. Please contact the conference organisers if you would like more details.

Who Invented the "Shakespearean Theatre"?

Burbage & Shakespeare and/or Henslowe & Alleyn Saturday, 24th November 24th 2012, 10am-5pm, The University of Reading New digital resources such the University of Reading's Henslowe-Alleyn Digitisation Project ( and recent excavations by Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) are allowing us to re-evaluate our standard assumptions about drama, theatre and playhouses in the age of Shakespeare. Were Richard Burbage, William Shakespeare and their colleagues in the Lord Chamberlain's Men, and later the King's Men, and their co-investors in the Globe and Blackfriars playhouses really the most important figures in late 16th and early 17th theatre? Or were the theatrical entrepreneur Philip Henslowe and the eminent actor Edward Alleyn equally or more important figures with the Lord Strange's and later the Lord Admiral's Men at the Rose, Fortune and Hope Playhouses?
Were Henslowe and Alleyn rivals or competitors to Burbage and Shakespeare? Or were the four men colleagues, associates and friends in a profession that was much more interconnected than we know? This one-day conference brings together, for the first time, the leading archaeologists at MOLA, who have excavated the remains of the Theatre, Rose, Globe and now the Curtain playhouses, with leading scholars on Burbage, Shakespeare, Henslowe and Alleyn to discuss playhouses and acting companies and the writers, actors and entrepreneurs who "invented" the theatre that we know as "Shakespearean". Designed not just for Shakespearean scholars and students, but actors, directors, theatrical and literary audiences, aficionados and the general public, this conference promises to put Shakespeare and his contemporaries in their place. Speakers: R. A Foakes, Andrew Gurr, Grace Ioppolo, Sally-Beth MacLean, Alan H. Nelson, Stanley Wells, and MOLA archaeologists Julian Bowsher, Heather Knight, Pat Miller and David Saxby. Tickets (including lunch and reception): £40, with reduced rate of £25 for students, unwaged and over 60s. Online registration with a credit or debit card is now open through the University of Reading store at If you wish to pay by cheque, please email Mrs Jan Cox at for a booking form. For any queries, please contact Prof. Grace Ioppolo:


St Paul’s Institute is hosting a seminar, in collaboration with Our Democratic Heritage, which will be exploring the history of St Paul’s Cross and its significance for public discourse and democracy in the UK. We are bringing together eminent scholars on the topic in order to host a session that can inform the interpretation of the site moving forwards, and would love to see as many experts in the room as we can to contribute to that discussion. The seminar is taking place at 3pm on Wednesday 25thSeptember, and full details are available here:


We would like to invite you to a new seminar series ‘Reevaluating the Literary Coterie, 1550-1825’. We will meet at UCL on Wednesday evenings approximately fortnightly throughout Autumn 2012. We are grateful to the UCL Centre for Early Modern Exchange and the UCL Faculty Institute of Graduate Studies for helping us organize, fund, and promote what should prove a fascinating set of discussions. Papers will focus on: specific English language coteries active in Great Britain and Europe between 1550 and 1825; an examinations of the conditions and structures which lead to the creation, sustenance, and demise of coteries; and consideration of the viability of the coterie as a hermeneutic model useful to current criticism. The series will comprise of four ninety-minute seminars with each session containing two chronologically-linked papers of thirty minutes, followed by thirty minutes of conversation. We should have titles by the start of next week and for a list of dates and speakers please see our blog at: And if you’ve got any questions about the series please email us on:

‘Fame and Fortune: The Mirror for Magistrates, 1559-1946’

An International, Interdisciplinary Conference 14th-15th September 2012, Magdalen College, Oxford Participants: Scott Lucas, Mike Pincombe, Liz Oakley-Brown, Jennifer Richards, Angus Vine, Jane Griffiths, Jessica Winston, Kavita Mudan Finn, Cathy Shrank, Paulina Kewes, Harriet Archer, Gillian Hubbard, Meredith Skura, Matthew Woodcock, Bart van Es, Tom Davies, Michelle O’Callaghan, Anthony Martin, Andrew Hadfield. The first major conference on the Mirror for Magistrates, ‘Fame and Fortune’ will bring together scholars from around the world to explore what’s next for this rich and undervalued work. Broadening investigation into the Mirror’s development during the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, papers will take in the intellectual and political contexts of the Mirror’s inception, the later editions which appropriated and reconfigured the original text, and the profound influence the collection had on prose fiction, verse historiography, tragedy and complaint. We will consider the impact of successive editorial strategies on our interpretation of the text, while a range of interdisciplinary critical approaches will extend the framework within which the Mirror has been analysed, and prompt new directions for research. The Mirror for Magistrates (1559) looks like a collection of verse complaints by unfortunate figures from England’s past. These complaints catalogue the fates of kings and rebels, for whom ambition, envy and betrayal have led to violent deaths, and a tendency to moralise. But the verses alternate with a prose narrative which describes how they came to be written and collected. William Baldwin, and the poets he enlisted to help him, run into problems as they try to reconstruct late medieval history from the chronicles they have to hand: who do we trust when sources disagree? Should a bad character’s complaint be badly written? Is it right to rebel against a corrupt ruler, and is it the poet’s business to get involved in politics? Cutting to the heart of early modern debates on tyranny, duty and free speech, and critiquing contemporary historiographical practice, the hubbub of voices must be kept at a safe fictional remove to avoid the censor, or worse. Part encyclopaedia, part project blog, the text keeps the Mirror we are promised tantalisingly out of reach as Baldwin and his band of co-authors rampage through British history, bickering about art, impersonating headless corpses, and uncovering the risks we take when we surrender the written or spoken word to interpretation. The 1559 Mirror grew as it was reprinted in expanding editions between 1563 and 1578, to satisfy huge popular demand. Meanwhile, John Higgins and Thomas Blenerhasset wrote prequels to Baldwin’s late medieval material, extending the scope of the project back into ancient British legend and capitalising on its commercial success. The texts were read by Spenser, Shakespeare, Harvey, and Jonson; they are named-checked in Bartholomew Fair, and underpin the plots of Cymbeline and King Lear, as well as inspiring countless imitations in poetry and prose, on and off the early modern stage. In 1610, Richard Niccols brought almost all of the disparate Mirrors together in the final early modern edition; Joseph Haslewood edited the collection in 1815. Most recently, Lily B. Campbell published critical editions of Baldwin, Higgins and Blenerhasset’s work in 1938 and 1946. Unwieldy and unconventional, the Mirror has always evaded firm definitions. This conference aims to celebrate its complexity, innovation and vast influence, which even today continue to surprise. Please visit or to register or for more information. This conference is generously supported by the Royal Historical Society and the Society for Renaissance Studies.
FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from