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AG Leventis Foundation Graduate Scholarship for Byzantine Studies

AG Leventis Foundation Graduate Scholarship for Byzantine Studies, Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research

The AG Leventis Foundation Graduate Scholarship for Byzantine Studies was first established in 2011 by the A.G. Leventis Foundation, a long-standing and generous benefactor to Oxford University.

A new Scholarship will be awarded this year, to take effect from the start of Michaelmas Term 2014.

The Scholarship is administered by the Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research and is normally awarded to a graduate student showing exceptional promise currently undertaking or proposing to undertake doctoral research at Oxford.

The Scholarship is tenable at any of the Oxford colleges to students studying for a higher degree in any field of Byzantine Studies at Oxford.

Am I eligible?
Candidates who have applied to read for a post-graduate degree in Late Antique and Byzantine Studies at Oxford – or already studying in Oxford – are eligible to apply.

Preference is usually shown to students embarking on doctoral research (Doctor of Philosophy), rather than for taught course degrees (Master of Studies/Master of Philosophy).

What does it cover?
100% of university and college fees, and a generous grant towards living costs.

Awards are valid for up to three years. If the scholarship is offered for a course lasting more than one year, the continuation of the scholarship each year is subject to an annual renewal process based on satisfactory academic progress.

How do I apply?
1) Applicants must either have been offered a place at Oxford to read for a graduate degree, or currently be enrolled at the University.

2) Applications for the AG Leventis Foundation Graduate Scholarship in Byzantine Studies should include a covering letter outlining current research interests, a brief curriculum vitae and a recent sample of written work of between 2-3,000 words.

3) Please send your application to Dr. Peter Frankopan, Director of the Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research by email. Alternatively, please send a hard copy by post to Dr. Frankopan at Worcester College, Oxford, OX1 2HB. The closing deadline for applications is Friday 22 August 2014.

How will I know if I have been successful?
Applications for the will be considered by the Committee for the Oxford Centre for Byzantine Research during the summer vacation. The Committee may or may nor request candidates to present themselves for interview prior to reaching its decision. The Committee reserves the right to defer awarding the Scholarship. In the event of an award, the successful candidate will be notified by 1 September 2014.

Fluctuating Networks: The Constructive Role of Broken Bonds in the Medieval Mediterranean and Beyond

Fluctuating Networks: The Constructive Role of Broken Bonds in the Medieval Mediterranean and Beyond, 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 14–17, 2015

The Medieval Studies Research Group at the University of Lincoln (UK), seeks papers for one sponsored panel at the 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies at Western Michigan University, May 14-17, 20145. The theme is: Fluctuating Networks: The Constructive Role of Broken Bonds in the Medieval Mediterranean and Beyond.

The aim of this session is to re-consider theories and approaches to the study of medieval social, political, economic and cultural networks from multidisciplinary perspectives. The medieval Mediterranean, as a space of interaction and communication, offers a myriad of possibilities to explore, which increase even more when considering its connections with Europe and the rest of the known world.

In particular, we would welcome studies which examine how agents and circumstances, which in principle undermined and destroyed pre-existing bonds, in reality generated parallel structures and alternative webs of relatedness. Political conspiracy is a case in point. Similarly, betrayal could be read as an alteration of a system of trust, which simply shifted toward other individuals with whom new connections were established.

Through the analysis of textual and material sources, as well as visual art and architecture, this panel seeks to explore ideas and narratives of exclusion as potential seeds for new or renewed types of private and public networks. Ethnic, religious, political, economic, legal and cultural aspects were all at stake when de-constructing, while re-constructing, bonds between individuals and entire communities.

Possible areas of discussion include, but are not limited to:

  • Conspiracy and alternative networks
  • Revolt and rebellion
  • Exile and excommunication
  • Treason and betrayal (multiple interpretations)
  • Trade, boycott and commercial agreements/disagreements
  • Criminal associations
  • ‘Otherness’ within and outside ethnic and religious communities
  • Changing networks and legal practices
  • Marital and familial connections
  • Secular and monastic bonds
  • Diplomacy and the role of ambassadors, spies, etc.
  • Breaking bonds in historical writing and the construction of memory
  • Comparative views and socio-anthropological perspectives

Mediterranean Identities in the Premodern Era

John Watkins and Kathryn L. Reyerson, eds. Mediterranean Identities in the Premodern Era. Ashgate, 2014.

From Ashgate

The first full length volume to approach the premodern Mediterranean from a fully interdisciplinary perspective, this collection defines the Mediterranean as a coherent region with distinct patterns of social, political, and cultural exchange.

The essays explore the production, modification, and circulation of identities based on religion, ethnicity, profession, gender, and status as free or slave within three distinctive Mediterranean geographies: islands, entrepôts and empires. Individual essays explore such topics as interreligious conflict and accommodation; immigration and diaspora; polylingualism; classical imitation and canon formation; traffic in sacred objects; Mediterranean slavery; and the dream of a reintegrated Roman empire.

Integrating environmental, social, political, religious, literary, artistic, and linguistic concerns, this collection offers a new model for approaching a distinct geographical region as a unique site of cultural and social exchange.

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Dreaming in Byzantium and Beyond

Christine Angelidi and George T. Calofonos, eds. Dreaming in Byzantium and Beyond. Ashgate, 2014.

From Ashgate

Although the actual dreaming experience of the Byzantines lies beyond our reach, the remarkable number of dream narratives in the surviving sources of the period attests to the cardinal function of dreams as vehicles of meaning, and thus affords modern scholars access to the wider cultural fabric of symbolic representations of the Byzantine world. Whether recounting real or invented dreams, the narratives serve various purposes, such as political and religious agendas, personal aspirations or simply an author’s display of literary skill. It is only in recent years that Byzantine dreaming has attracted scholarly attention, and important publications have suggested the way in which Byzantines reshaped ancient interpretative models and applied new perceptions to the functions of dreams.

This book - the first collection of studies on Byzantine dreams to be published - aims to demonstrate further the importance of closely examining dreams in Byzantium in their wider historical and cultural, as well as narrative, context. Linked by this common thread, the essays offer insights into the function of dreams in hagiography, historiography, rhetoric, epistolography, and romance. They explore gender and erotic aspects of dreams; they examine cross-cultural facets of dreaming, provide new readings, and contextualize specific cases; they also look at the Greco-Roman background and Islamic influences of Byzantine dreams and their Christianization. The volume provides a broad variety of perspectives, including those of psychoanalysis and anthropology.

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Modern Greek for Postgraduates of Greek Archaeology and Early Career Scholars

Modern Greek for Postgraduates of Greek Archaeology and Early Career Scholars, Irish Institute of Hellenic Studies at Athens, October 27–November 7, 2014

Reading modern Greek bibliographical sources has become indispensable for any research postgraduate student or scholar of Greek Archaeology. This two-week intensive course (pilot) aims at familiarizing non-native Greek students with the modern Greek language - structure, vocabulary and terminology - which is used in archaeological publications, from excavation reports and object catalogues to theoretical studies, and from current demotic Greek to katharevousa.

The venue will be the IIHSA premises, 51A Notara St, Athens. Lessons will take place on three evenings per week (x 2.5 hours) over a two-week period from 27th October to 7th November 2014. The course may be extended for a third week (10th–14th November) depending on demand.

The teacher will be archaeologist and philologist Dr Vassilis Petrakis. The course, which will be taught through English, will use a tailor-made Reader. The choice of texts will take into account the students' research interests as far as possible.

The fee is 200 Euro for the two-week course. It is open to all postgraduates/early career scholars with a working knowledge of modern Greek or those who have been attending an intensive course in modern Greek. The number of participants will be limited to 8. One academic reference will be required.

Limited accommodation will be available in the IIHSA premises for the duration of the course.

Postdoctoral Fellowships, Dartmouth Society of Fellows

These fellowships foster the academic careers of scholars who have recently received their Ph.D. degrees, by permitting them to pursue their research while gaining mentored experience as teachers and members of the departments and/or programs in which they are housed. The program also benefits Dartmouth by complementing existing curricula with underrepresented fields.

Postdoctoral Fellows are individuals at the early stages of their careers who demonstrate exceptional promise as scholar-teachers. There are two categories of Postdoctoral Fellows: Society Fellows and Affiliate Fellows.

Society Fellows are appointed by the Dean of the Faculty, following a competitive process. Society Fellows are expected to pursue their research, teach one course annually, and contribute to the Society’s programs (monthly colloquia, dinners, visiting lectures, etc.).

Affiliate Fellows are interdisciplinary postdoctoral fellows appointed by other institutions on campus. Mellon Fellows appointed through the Leslie Center, International Relations Fellows appointed through the Dickey Center, and Neukom Fellows are invited to join the Society as Affiliate Fellows.

Stipend and Resources
Society Fellowships normally run for 34 months, beginning on September 1 and ending on June 30th of the final year. Fellows arriving in 2015 will receive a monthly stipend of $4,600 plus benefits, and $4,000 annually to support computing, travel and research needs.

The departments and/or programs where fellows are appointed Lecturers have the primary responsibility for providing office and working space for Fellows, as well as access to other research needs or equipment. The Society helps to assure the cooperation of departments in providing the requisite setting for the scholarly and creative work of each Fellow.

Eligibility
Applicants for the 2015–2018 Society Fellowships must have completed a Ph.D. no earlier than January 1, 2013. Candidates who do not yet hold a Ph.D. but expect to by June 30, 2015 should supply a letter from their home institution indicated that the applicant is expected to receive the degree before November 1, 2015.

New Issue of ‘Atiqot

‘Atiqot, 78 (2014)

CONTENTS INCLUDE

A Byzantine Monastery and Islamic-Period Settlement Remains at Horbat Ma‘on
Pirhiya Nahshoni and Gregory Seriy
At Horbat Ma‘on, located in the northwestern Negev, three areas were opened (A–C) and six strata (I–VI) were discerned. The strata date from the Late Roman–early Byzantine to the Late Islamic (fourteenth century CE) periods. In Stratum V, dated to the late Byzantine period, a well-planned complex was erected, consisting of several buildings and at least two streets. The finds included local and imported pottery vessels. Gypsum stoppers were found in one of the rooms, two of them bore the embossed forms of a lion and a cross. The architecture and finds from Stratum V indicate that this must have been a civil center in the Byzantine period. In Stratum IV, dated to the end of the Byzantine period, a church was built. The finds included a bread stamp adorned with a cross and an inscription mentioning the name Stephen. The nature of the architecture and the finds from Strata IV and V point to the existence of a monastery and a church dedicated to St. Stephen at the site.

A Bread Stamp from Horbat Ma‘on
Leah Di Segni
A pottery bread stamp was discovered in Stratum IV at Horbat Ma‘on, dated to the end of the Byzantine period. The bread stamp has a disk-shaped base and a round knob handle. The handle top is decorated with a cross and the base of the stamp bears a Greek inscription that reads: “Blessing of (Saint?) Stephen”. The inscription indicates that the stamp was used for preparing buns that were handed out at a church as a memento of a visit to that church. It is proposed that the excavated complex at Horbat Ma‘on included a church of St. Stephen and possibly served as the residence of the bishop of Menois.

Coins from Horbat Ma‘on
Donald T. Ariel and Ariel Berman
Of the 129 coins found at Horbat Ma‘on, 56 could be identified. The earliest coins date to the first century BCE–first century CE through the first half of the third century CE—these may not be related to the settlement at the site. The coins from the last third of the third century until the first quarter of the fifth century CE seem to reflect the Stratum VI occupation there. Strata V–IV are represented by coins later than 423 until the seventh century CE. The remainder of the coins date to the late seventh through ninth centuries CE (Stratum III) and the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries CE (Strata II–I).

2016 College Art Association Call for Proposals

CAA 104th Annual Conference, Washington, D.C., February 3–6, 2016

The Annual Conference Committee invites session proposals that cover the breadth of current thought and research in art, art and architectural history, theory and criticism, pedagogical issues, museum and curatorial practice, conservation, and developments in technology.

In order to submit a proposal, you must be a current CAA member.

Post-doctoral Fellowships in the Humanities at Universities & Research Institutes (US & Germany)

Post-doctoral Fellowships in the Humanities at Universities and Research Institutes in the U.S. and Germany

Via its funding initiative "Postdoctoral Fellowships in the Humanities at Universities and Research Institutes in Germany and the USA" the Volkswagen Foundation aims to strengthen transatlantic academic relations, especially in the field of the Humanities. In this funding initiative the Volkswagen Foundation works closely together with the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, New York.

Within the context of these postdoctoral fellowships, the two foundations cooperate with several universities and research institutes of excellence in Germany and in the USA. Notwithstanding, in principle applicants are able to nominate their own choice of university or research institute as the cooperating institution hosting their individual research sojourn.

The institutions participating seek applications in a number of fields, including archaeology, history, literature, bibliography, Asian studies, Middle Eastern studies, African studies, religion, art history, cultural studies, history of science, medieval studies and the humanities generally.

Authors, Editors, and Audiences of Medieval Middle Eastern Texts

The Authors, Editors, and Audiences of Medieval Middle Eastern Texts, Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Cambridge, September 1–2, 2014

This conference considers the history and literature of the medieval Middle East and discusses what it might mean when we refer to “authors”, “editors”, and “audiences” of medieval texts. Medieval is to be interpreted broadly as falling between the seventh and fifteenth-centuries CE.

Speakers:

September 1, 2014
Waving the Mantle of the Prophet: The journey of Umm Salama’s narration of Ḥadīth al-kisāʾ over six centuries
Yasmin Amin (Exeter)
Authoring Ḥujja: The Difficult Subjectivity of Early Imāmī Muḥaddithūn
George Warner (SOAS)
Concepts of Governance and the Governance of Concepts in “Sultanic” Political Literature
Jennifer Viehl (Salle/Beirut)
Al- Ḥarīrī and Authorial Self-Fashioning: Reception, Authorization, and Commentary
Matthew Keegan (New York)
Inspiration, Instability, and Authorship in Umayyad Poetry
Sam Wilder (Cambridge)
The Sources of al-Balādhurī's Kitāb Futūḥ al-Buldān
Ryan J. Lynch (Oxford)
Representations of the Marwanids in the Ansāb al-ashrāf and the reception of its audience in the ninth-century cultural milieu
Su i-Wen (Edinburgh)
Authors, Editors, Compilers? Al-Balādhurī, al-Dīnawarī and al-Ṭabarī on Kharijite Origins
Hannah Hagemann (Edinburgh/Hamburg)

September 2, 2014
Whose martyrdom is it anyway? An exploration of Syrian-Palestinian Martyr life audiences 9th-10th centuries CE
Anna Chrysostomides (Oxford)
Whatever works: Coptic Historiolae starring ancient Egyptian deities, and their Christian redactors and audiences in late Coptic and early Islamic Egypt
Edward Love (Oxford)
Authorship versus Authority: the case of the Pseudepigrapha from Umayyad Egypt
Cecilia Palombo (Princeton)
The compilers of medieval Arabic geographical works: authors or editors?
Aglaya A. Yankovskaya (Saint Petersburg)
Composing, editing and transmitting an Arab cosmography: The case of the Ḫarīdat al’ajā’ib wa Farīdat al-Ġarā’ib by Sirāj al-Dīn Ibn al-Wardī
Francesca Bellino (Turin)
From Prolegomena to Populace: Tafsīr Writing with al-Biqāʿī in Medieval Cairo
Roy Michael McCoy III (Oxford)
Idrīs ʿImād al-Dīn and Ismāʿīlī Historical Writing in 9th/15th Century Yemen
Asif Rawji (Cambridge)
Author, Editor or Compiler? The Construction of a Medico-Philosophical Encyclopaedia in the Mid Ninth-Century
Joshua Olsson (Cambridge)
An Adīb or Defensor Fidei: Intellectual Enterprise of Amr ibn Mattā in the late tenth Century Iraq
Ayse Icoz (Birmingham)

Registration required.

The Language of Byzantine Learned Literature

M. Hinterberger, ed. The Language of Byzantine Learned Literature. Brepols, 2014

From Brepols

The learned literary language of Byzantium is subjected to new and ground-breaking analysis in this volume.

Built on a highly traditional educational system, the language of Byzantine literature was for the most part written in an idiom deeply influenced by ancient Greek texts and grammatical handbooks. The resulting overall archaizing impression of Byzantine Greek is largely why the language of learned literature – as compared with the relatively well researched vernacular literature – has seldom been taken seriously as an object of linguistic study. This volume combines the expertise of linguists and scholars of Byzantine literature to challenge the assumption that learned mediaeval Greek is merely the weary continuation of ancient Greek or, worse still, a poor imitation of it, while proposing that it needs to be treated as a literary idiom in its own right. The contribution that texts of this kind can offer to sub-fields of Greek historical linguistics is explored using specific examples. Sociolinguistic theory provides a particularly useful framework for a more accurate analysis of the relationship between the vernacular and classicizing varieties of Greek literary language. In addition, the impact of the educational system on the production of texts is examined. In another chapter it is shown that a number of far-reaching assumptions, which originated in the 15th century, about accentuation and the middle voice still tend to colour our understanding of Byzantine, as well as ancient, Greek. Other chapters focusing on particles, the dative and the synthetic perfect reveal that Byzantine authors, while of course influenced by the living spoken language, used their classical linguistic heritage in a creative and innovative way.

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Presence and InVisibility – Sign-bearing Artefacts in Sacral Spaces

Presence and InVisibility – Sign-bearing Artefacts in Sacral Spaces, Heidelberg, February 23–25, 2015

For many cultures sign-bearing artefacts are an immanent component of sacral spaces, which constitute themselves through their presence. This applies to actual specific places, as well as to cultural space in its broadest sense. In the latter case, sacral space is to be understood as social instead of architectural.

The conference will focus on the interaction of mobile or immobile sign-bearing artefacts – ranging from smallest objects to entire buildings – and the protagonists of sacral spaces in Europe and the Near East. By analysing material residues of advanced civilizations from antiquity to the middle ages, the entire spectrum of religions within this temporal and geographical margin shall be investigated, including phenomena generally termed as “magical”. An important point of investigation within this context will be the correlation of presence and InVisibility of these artefacts, as well as cultural or religious changes and transcultural relations.

The term “sign” includes all signs found on artefacts that aim to communicate in any way, may it be in characters, in pictographic signs or other undetermined forms.

Questions of interest in the context of presence and visibility/invisibility of sign-bearing artefacts could include: Are all these sign-bearing artefacts aimed at a specific group of people? Could their messages be received by others? Do authors, scribes, or commissioners put effort in reaching a specific circle of people, and if so, how? Is the visibility of such an artefact or a sign necessary to ensure the delivery of the intended message? Are artefacts or signs of restricted visibility actually to be seen as visually restricted or are they simply intended for a specific group of recipients? Do visible and invisible artefacts or signs differ in their effect on protagonists of sacral spaces? What about artefacts or signs that are visible but bear messages that cannot be understood without further means? Is an artefact always a mere medium of a message or can it be a message itself?

What practices were performed in this context and with these artefacts? Could the knowledge of presence be more important than the actual presence? Is presence exclusively provided through visibility? In what way could the material properties or conditions influence the visibility/invisibility or presence of an artefact?

The conference shall address these questions and attempt to answer them through lectures by national and international researchers. Contributions from all disciplines are welcome. The length of a lecture should not surpass 30 minutes and can be held in English or in German.

New Issue of British Museum Studies in Ancient Egypt and Sudan

British Museum Studies in Ancient Egypt and Sudan (BMSAES), issue 21 (July 2014).

From the issue editors, Elisabeth R. O’Connell and Amandine Mérat

This issue presents new work on Roman, Late Antique and Medieval Egyptian collections primarily in the UK, Germany and France. Several of the articles presented herein have their origins in aspects of presentations delivered at a workshop held in the British Museum Ancient Egypt and Sudan Department and entitled, ‘Egypt in the First Millennium AD: Roman, Late Antique and early Islamic collections in the UK’ (London, 11 July 2012) or on a panel at the International Congress of Coptic Studies entitled, ‘Archaeological approaches to museum collections’ (Rome, 17 Sept. 2012). Other contributions dealing with related subjects and already scheduled for publication in BMSAES were included in this issue. Using a variety of sources and methods, each contribution aims to recontextualise objects in museum collections.

C. Fluck and Y. Petrina seek to identify findspots for unprovenanced material in museum collections today. Fluck provides a history of the Late Antique Egyptian collections in the Museum für Byzantinische Kunst, Berlin, usefully giving a site-by-site evaluation of objects from excavated contexts that can now be studied together. Petrina uses jewellery from recent archaeological excavations to evaluate the probable production place of objects with unknown provenance.

Both F. Pritchard and A. Mérat undertake close study of textiles derived from excavated contexts and now in museum collections. Whereas Mérat’s corpus derives from excavated graves, the more common sources of ancient textiles, the material examined by Pritchard was excavated from rubbish heaps. As part of her larger project to study textiles from the 1913/1914 excavation of Antinoupolis now in UK collections, Pritchard focuses here on fragments of soft furnishings of a type that has remained relatively unstudied, given its rare appearance in funerary contexts. Mérat identifies embroideries among the textiles from the 1923/24 excavation of a Medieval cemetery at Tell Edfu. Radiocarbon analysis undertaken on some of the pieces from the site has yielded dates of 13th–15th century AD, indicating that these objects (and by extension, this part of the cemetery) are much later than the original excavators supposed. These studies complement the results of British Museum Research Projects at Antinouplis and Hagr Edfu, respectively.

Contributions by R. Smalley and A. De Moor, C. Fluck, M. Van Strydonck and M. Boudin take different approaches to the study of ancient headgear. Smalley’s corpus of recently catalogued Medieval headgear now in the V&A Museum is largely unprovenanced; her type-series thus represent a first step in their classification and study. De Moor et al. present the results of radiocarbon dating for twenty-one hair-nets in seven international collections, a project undertaken as part of the Dress ID Project: Clothing and identities, new perspectives on textiles in the Roman Empire (2007–2012), concluding that the fashion peaked in the mid-5th to 7th centuries AD.

E. R. O’Connell and R. I. Thomas use a combination of archival and archaeological resources to investigate sites represented by British Museum collections. As part of the British Museum Research Project, Wadi Sarga at the British Museum, O’Connell draws together unpublished fieldwork reports, notebooks, maps, architectural plans, tracings, negatives, photographs and other archival materials to provide an illustrated history of R. Campbell Thompson’s 1913/14 excavation at Wadi Sarga on behalf of the Byzantine Research Fund. As part of the British Museum Research Project, Naukratis: Greeks in Egypt, documentation in c. 70 international museum collections and new fieldwork at Kom Geif/Naukratis has provided substantial evidence marshalled by Thomas for the periodic prosperity of Naukratis in the Roman period and into Late Antiquity (30BC–AD639).

Together, these articles illustrate the potential and challenges of studying museum collections in relationship to their archaeological contexts.

Capturing the Un-Representable: Artifacts and Landscapes between Mental and Material Worlds

Capturing the Un-Representable: Artifacts and Landscapes between Mental and Material Worlds, Center for Ancient Studies Annual Graduate Student Conference, University of Pennsylvania, December 5–7, 2014

Humanistic disciplines typically focus their investigations on tangible, material remains, such as texts, artifacts, architecture, and landscapes, analyzing them as autonomous objects. However, material remains can also be understood as traces – evidence of greater images, landscapes, and spaces that existed in the minds of their creators and users. What anthropologists call the “life world” is processed in the mind and thus becomes a cultural construct, subsequently made manifest through design as objects, landscapes, and architectures.  In turn, these physical manifestations may be used to access the imaginaire of the culture that constructed them. Our conference aims to examine what such material remains evince about the thoughts, imaginations, and mental motivations of ancient and medieval cultures (Old and New World) – that is, how do material remains mediate between mental and material worlds?

The annual graduate student conference, sponsored by the Center for Ancient Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, aims to present a diverse set of methodological interventions that link material culture to historical imagination.  Our goal is productive dialogue about the utility of methods employed in different geographic regions, time periods, and disciplines on the topic at hand (see below).  We hope to accomplish our task by mixing graduate students with scholars at various stages of their careers and by means of a culminating methods workshop.

Our conference asks the following questions: How can we recover the afterlife of artifacts and landscapes in human imagination?  And how do imagined artifacts and landscapes have bearing on actual ones?  What can the agency of an object tell us about the ‘intentions’ of its creators and users?  Creator intention is arguably embedded both in the object’s reason for being as well as in the material form it takes.  How do archaeological objects reflect mental conceptions about whatever the object was ‘designed’ to be?  Does our inability to explain ‘intention’ reflect our own loss of codes to understanding that ‘original’ meaning?  Does considering the agency of the artifact help us to better understand (and decode) the mental world behind its production and use?

The conference will consist of a Friday evening reception and keynote address, with the main conference panels on Saturday and a methods workshop on Sunday morning. Each of the conference panels will be moderated by invited established scholars. After the conference sessions, a short workshop will give the speakers the opportunity to receive feedback and discuss their papers in more detail.

We invite submissions from graduate students and recent PhDs in any field studying ancient and medieval cultures (both Old and New World), such as religious studies, art history, anthropology and textual/literary studies. Cross-disciplinary approaches are especially welcomed.

Potential paper topics could include:

  • Artifacts that indicate planned or imagined but perhaps unrealized architecture and landscapes.
  • Artifacts composed of words suggestive of greater mental images; words as representations and traces.
  • The relationship of textual and visual/material representations; ekphrasis.
  • Contradiction and multiplicity in representations; aesthetics and modes of viewing or reading.
  • The role of the tangible artifact in the creation (and destruction) of mental images.
  • Imagined landscapes and real terrain.
  • Mental mapping; experience of place; coding and decoding; re-connecting representations to real terrain.
  • New methodologies for accessing and studying mental imagery or conceptions that have not been preserved (or may never have been constructed) as representations in material culture.

The Digital Future of Art Historical Scholarship

The Digital Future of Art Historical Scholarship, Young Research Library Main Conference Room, UCLA, August 6, 2014

The Digital Future of Art Historical Scholarship is a colloquium open to the public, which will be held in conjunction with the eight day summer institute “Beyond the Digitized Slide Library.”

Guest speakers:

  • Amy Heibel, Associate VP of Technology, Web & Digital Media at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art
  • Betty Leigh Hutcheson, Director of Publications at the College Art Association
  • Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director of the MIT Press

Registration required.

poster

Corinth Museum Internship, American School of Classical Studies at Athens

Thanks to a grant from the Steinmetz Family Foundation the ASCSA announces a year-long paid internship in the School’s Corinth Excavations starting September 2014. The Corinth Museum Intern will assist the Assistant Director of the Excavations in curatorial work in the Museum storerooms and will design with her educational programs using materials from the Excavations for on-site and online use.

Internship Description: Hands on experience in learning all the stages of post–excavation management of antiquities of all periods from a vast archaeological collection. Data management for a complex archival database linked to an online archive. Implementation of archaeological knowledge gained in data processing coupled with modern museum studies standards to design educational programs for K-12 students in North America and Greece in a concerted public outreach endeavor.

Qualifications: B.A or higher degree in a field related to the School’s academic areas, such as classics, ancient history, art history, archaeology. Preferably the museum intern will be a graduate student in archaeology/ museum studies. The application is open to students of Greek and North American universities. Knowledge of Greek and English is desirable. Computer skills are necessary, including web management. Good communication skills, both written and oral, are required.

Term: mid-September 2014-mid–August 2015

Salary: $20,000. Membership fees are waived and half-board and full room at Ancient Corinth are provided.

Application Procedure: Please send by email CV, the names of two references with contact information, and letter of interest to Ioulia Tzonou-Herbst.

Corsairs and Pirates in the Eastern Mediterranean, 15th–19th c.

Corsairs and Pirates in the Eastern Mediterranean, 15th–19th c., Museum of Cycladic Arts, Athens, October 17–19, 2014

“Corsairs and Pirates in the Eastern Mediterranean, 15th–19th c.” is the title of the 2nd International Scientific Conference on The Greek World in Travel Accounts and Maps organized by the Sylvia Ioannou Foundation.

The aim of the Conference is to highlight the historical dimensions of a phenomenon that has recurred in the Mediterranean history up to the end of the 19th century.

More than 20 scientists and scholars of international repute from six countries (Greece, Cyprus, USA, UK, Malta, Turkey) will shed light to the multidimensional phenomenon of piracy and corsair raids in the Eastern Mediterranean.

The conference will open with the welcoming address by the Director of the Museum of Cycladic Art, Nicholas Chr. Stampolidis. The keynote speech will be delivered by David J. Starkey (Department of History, University of Hull).

The Cross in Medieval Art

The Cross in Medieval Art, ICMA Sponsored Session at the 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, May 14–17, 2015

Recent art-historical research has brought us new understandings of the central symbol of Christianity, the Cross, in different places, at different times, in different media, and with different theoretical and conceptual foci. The Cross, its representations and significations, and the appearance and materiality of those representations, features in many areas of current research, but not often as a central subject to be dealt with thematically and comparatively. This session invites considerations of images depicting, representing or referring to the Cross in any media, and across the middle ages, from early to late. The aim of the session is to consider what can be gained at this particular moment in scholarship from a common concentration on the theme of the Cross. Therefore, proposers are invited especially to consider their subject matter in light of theoretical perspectives that have been prominent in recent art-historical scholarship, such as (but not limited to) affect, emotion, movement, medium and materiality.

2015–16 Postdoctoral Fellowships, Columbia Society of Fellows in the Humanities

The Columbia Society of Fellows in the Humanities, with grants from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the William R. Kenan Trust, will appoint a number of postdoctoral fellows in the humanities for the academic year 2015–2016. We invite applications from qualified candidates who have received their PhD between 1 January 2013 and 1 July 2015. Fellows are appointed as Lecturers in appropriate departments at Columbia University and as Postdoctoral Research Fellows. The fellowship is renewable for a second and third year.

In the first year, Fellows teach one course per semester. At least one of these courses will be in the undergraduate general education program: Contemporary Civilization, Literature Humanities, Music Humanities, Art Humanities, Asian Civilizations, Asian Humanities, or Global Cultures, including those of Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East. For more information on Columbia’s Core Curriculum please visit www.college.columbia.edu/core/.

The second course may be a departmental course, the design of which will be determined jointly by the Fellow and the Fellow’s academic department. In the second year, Fellows teach one course: either a Core course (if only one of the two first-year courses was in the Core) or a departmental course. This will leave one semester in the second year free of teaching responsibilities. In the third year, Fellows again teach one course, either a Core course or a departmental course (to be decided jointly by the Fellow and the Fellow’s department), leaving one semester again free of teaching responsibilities. Please note that all teaching—whether a Core class or a department one—is to be arranged by the Fellow through the Fellow’s home academic department. Please also note that at least two of the three courses taught in the first two Fellowship years must be in the Core.

In addition to teaching and research, the duties of Fellows include attendance at the Society's lectures and events as well as active participation in the intellectual life of the Society and of the department with which the Fellow is affiliated. The annual stipend will be $61,000. Each Fellow will also receive a research allowance of $6,000 per annum.

The Christian Topography of Kosmas Indikopleustes: Firenze, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, plut. 9.

This publication provides a broad and thorough introduction to an unusual and interesting work. The quality of the essays, descriptions, and reproductions is high….The editor and his team are to be congratulated for providing such a comprehensive and reasonable introduction to this manuscript.

Jeffrey C. Anderson, ed. The Christian Topography of Kosmas Indikopleustes: Firenze, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, plut. 9.28. The Map of the Universe Redrawn in the Sixth Century. Folia picta: manoscritti miniati medievali, 3. Rome: Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura, 2013.

From the Bryn Mawr Classical Review (BMCR). Review by Charles Barber, Princeton University

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Assistant Curator, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

The Assistant Curator is responsible for research and presentation of the permanent collection and special exhibitions. The Assistant Curator will contribute to and shape public programming. He/She will work closely with the Curator, Public Programming, and the Education department, drawing on research and knowledge of the collection. The position requires strong art historical and writing skills.

Responsibilities:

  • Research on the collection and for special exhibitions
  • Participate in curatorial decisions in oversight of the collection and programs
  • Contribute to the conceptualization and planning of exhibitions, public programs, and lectures
  • Write texts for presentation of the collection and exhibitions (labels and guides, public relations texts, grant applications, online/website texts, digital interpretive tools, and other publications)
  • Present lectures and public talks
  • Coordinate collection database together with Curator of the Collection and in consultation with Registrar and Archivist; input information and approve entries entered by Junior Cataloguers
  • Advise on Gardner Digital Repository and Photography project as needed
  • Cataloguing of the library
  • Act as a liaison with the Public Programming, Education and Public Relations departments, and Marketing as needed
  • Participate in conservation research and treatment
  • Provide art historical and historical guidance for professional researchers and Artists and Scholars in Residence concerning the collection and the history of the museum
  • Provide research advice and editing for the Director's Office and other departments as needed
  • Other duties as required

Qualifications:

  • PhD in art history, preferably with research specialties in Italian and/or Spanish paintings and drawing
  • Proficiency in two foreign languages; fluency in one of them (preferably Italian and/or Spanish)
  • 2-3 years of curatorial work experience in an art museum
  • A record of publication in art history or a related field
  • Strong independent research skills
  • Excellent writing and editing skills
  • Ability to work collaboratively

Eusebius

The last ten or fifteen years have seen a surge in new work on Eusebius that has enriched and complicated the inherited picture, as scholars have renewed focus on writings, such as the apologetic and biblical works, that traditionally received less attention and reformulated and revised some of the conventional readings….A common methodological thread in these re-readings of Eusebius is a more informed attention to the properly literary character of each of his many books, and to his unique contribution to the creation of a new and distinctively Christian literary culture. Among the younger generation of scholars who have most thoroughly incorporated this line of approach is Aaron Johnson. His new book, Eusebius, is a most valuable summation of the work of the past couple of decades. Its virtues are many.

Aaron P. Johnson. Eusebius. I.B. Tauris, 2014.

From Marginalia. Review by Michael Hollerich, University of St. Thomas

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Five-Year Post-Doctoral Research Fellowships, All Souls College

All Souls College, University of Oxford, invites applications from suitably qualified candidates for up to six Post-Doctoral Research Fellowships.  Successful candidates will be expected to undertake a programme of independent post-doctoral research as agreed with the College and, if they so wish, a limited amount of University lecturing and teaching. The Fellowships are open to candidates in the Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

The Post-Doctoral Research Fellowships are for five years, fixed-term, and non-renewable. They are intended to offer opportunities for outstanding early career researchers to establish a record of independent research and teaching, develop their curriculum vitae and improve their prospects of obtaining permanent academic posts by the end of the Fellowship. The primary duty of a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow is the completion of a significant body of independent research for publication. Fellows are also encouraged to undertake appropriate teaching and supervision of research in the University.

The College will accept on-line applications from those who are, or have been, registered for a doctorate at any recognised university. It is expected that applicants will have completed their doctorate or be close to completion. Successful candidates must complete their doctorates by the time they take up their Fellowships. Candidates must be able to demonstrate both through their thesis and other work published or submitted for publication, their capacity to undertake original publishable academic research in their chosen field.

The Race for Paradise: An Islamic History of the Crusades

Paul M. Cobb. The Race for Paradise: An Islamic History of the Crusades. Oxford University Press, 2014.

From Oxford University Press

In 1099, when the first crusaders arrived triumphant and bloody before the walls of Jerusalem, they carved out a Christian European presence in the Islamic world that remained for centuries, bolstered by subsequent waves of new crusades and pilgrimages. But how did medieval Muslims understand these events? What does an Islamic history of the Crusades look like? The answers may surprise you.

In The Race for Paradise, we see medieval Muslims managing this new and long-lived Crusader threat not simply as victims or as victors, but as everything in-between, on all shores of the Muslim Mediterranean, from Spain to Syria. This is not just a straightforward tale of warriors and kings clashing in the Holy Land - of military confrontations and enigmatic heros such as the great sultan Saladin. What emerges is a more complicated story of border-crossers and turncoats; of embassies and merchants; of scholars and spies, all of them seeking to manage this new threat from the barbarian fringes of their ordered world.

When seen from the perspective of medieval Muslims, the Crusades emerge as something altogether different from the high-flying rhetoric of the European chronicles: as a diplomatic chess-game to be mastered, a commercial opportunity to be seized, a cultural encounter shaping Muslim experiences of Europeans until the close of the Middle Ages - and, as so often happened, a political challenge to be exploited by ambitious rulers making canny use of the language of jihad.

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Which Macarius?

A new set of wall paintings has been discovered on the south wall of the nave at Deir al-Surian. The paintings commemorate the death of Mar Marqari of Takrit, an abbot of the monastery who died in 888. The first painting depicts St. Macarius with his cherubim and a reference to a story from the life of Macarius of Alexandria. The second shows two saints on horseback.

Read more at Al-Ahram Weekly. See more images on the Deir al-Surian Conservation Project Facebook page.

The Eye of the Dragon: Viewing a Medieval Iconography from the Other Side

The Eye of the Dragon: Viewing a Medieval Iconography from the Other Side, panel at the 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 14–17, 2015

From the iconic heroism of Saint George to the resolute piety of Margaret of Antioch; from the arrow-shooting Bahram Gur to anonymous spear-wielding riders, slayers of dragons have received considerable art historical attention.  Individual slayers, as well as the iconography itself have been extensively studied and critically contextualized to reveal multi-layered meanings and changing identities. In his study on the Islamic Rider of the Gerona Beatus, O. K. Werckmeister demonstrated how, in the context of the Reconquista, the identity of the slayer could switch from good to evil, while Oya Pancaroglu argued that in Medieval Anatolia slayer images were both products and facilitators of cross-cultural exchange. Dragons and other monsters have been under the lens of art historians, too. Michael Camille and Debra Strickland have emphasized their roles as surrogates for social types and political adversaries. In that sense, the victims of the slayers, though independent of the iconography, have also been studied. However, it is difficult to say that the perspectives of the victims have received equal attention.

This panel calls for papers that will look at the slayer iconography from the position of the slain rather than the slayer.  It seeks papers that will approach the image visually and conceptually from bottom up and explore alternative and innovative interpretations.  What can this switch of gaze reveal about the relationship between the dragon and the slayer? In what novel ways can we interpret the visual asymmetry between them?  Would it correspond to actual social asymmetries, or to their subversion? Does the diagonal of the spear pin down and stabilize differences and antagonisms, or does it cut across and mediate between them?  Especially welcome are papers that move beyond Western European examples and provide comparative perspectives.

ICMA Sponsored Session, 2016 College Art Association Annual Meeting

ICMA Sponsored Session, College Art Association, Washington DC, February 3–6, 2016

The International Center of Medieval Art (ICMA) seeks proposals for sessions to be held under the organization’s sponsorship in 2016 at the annual College Art Association. Thanks to a generous grant from the Kress Foundation, funds may be available to defray travel costs of sponsored session speakers.

Reimagining the Middle Ages (c.500–c.1500)

Reimagining the Middle Ages (c.500-1500), panel at the 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, May 14–17, 2015

This panel seeks to bring together scholars whose work reimagines some aspect of the medieval world and/or encourages new perspectives on older topics. We welcome papers focusing on either Europe or the Islamic world in any era c.500–c.1500. This panel will complement a roundtable discussion of Christian Raffensperger’s Reimagining Europe: Kievan Rus’ in the Medieval World held at the 2014 annual meeting of the Ohio Academy of History.

Cantus planus. Notazione musicale bizantina in codici marciani

Cantus planus. Notazione musicale bizantina in codici marciani, Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana, Sale Monumentali, July 19–August 1, 2014

From July 19–August 1, 2014, an exhibition of Byzantine and post-Byzantine manuscripts will be on view in the Sale Monumentali of the Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana. The manuscripts, dating from the tenth to the seventeenth century, contain texts with ekphonetic notation.

The exhibition coincides with the 17th Meeting of the IMS Study Group “Cantus Planus.”

HASTAC 2015: Exploring the Art & Science of Digital Humanities

HASTAC 2015: Exploring the Art & Science of Digital Humanities, Michigan State University, May 27–30, 2015

Join us on the campus of Michigan State University to celebrate and explore the range of Digital Humanities Scholarship, Research, and Performance! We welcome sessions that address, exemplify, and interrogate the interdisciplinary nature of DH work. HASTAC 2015 challenges participants to consider how the interplay of science, technology, social sciences, humanities, and arts are producing new forms of knowledge, disrupting older forms, challenging or reifying power relationships, among other possibilities.

Byzantine Music Adjunct Instructor, Hellenic College Holy Cross

Key Responsibilities:

  • Teaching one 1.5 credit course per semester
  • Administration of the Chant Lab Program
  • Administartion of and serving as co-director of the Holy Cross St. Romanos the Melodist Byzantine Choir; providing administrative support as needed
  • 10–15 hours per week

Skills & Experience:

  • Minimum qualifications include Holy Cross Certificate in Byzantine Music or equivalent certificate from an accredited conservatory or school of Byzantine Music, and a BA
  • PhD or MA in Byzantine Musicology and/or Teaching Diploma in Byzantine Music preferred
  • Additional music training, theological background, and knowledge of Greek desired

Syriac Studies Reference Library

The Syriac Studies Reference Library (Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University) is a collection of rare and out-of-print titles that are of vital importance for Syriac studies. It is especially rich in early manuscript catalogs, dictionaries, and grammars, and contains many of the indispensable editions of Syriac texts that were produced in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries. This collection was scanned from the holdings of the Semitics/ICOR Library of The Catholic University of America.

Head of Research, The Courtauld Institute of Art

To be held in conjunction with a permanent academic teaching and research position as Senior Lecturer/Reader/Professor

The Courtauld Institute of Art, a world-leading centre for the study of the history of art and architecture, the conservation of paintings and curating, is seeking to appoint a new Head of Research.  This is a significant leadership role at The Courtauld.  The post-holder will define and drive the strategic direction The Courtauld’s research and of its research funding and will further develop its research profile, working collaboratively with senior academic partners.  S/he will be responsible for the delivery of The Courtauld’s Research Forum programme and will develop and integrate it fully into the research strategy and the work of The Courtauld as a whole.  S/he will be responsible for ensuring that the Institute achieves its research aims and top REF research ranking.

The Courtauld has a dynamic research culture.  It has consistently achieved the top rankings in the national research assessment exercises.  Its Research Forum has significantly enhanced and expanded its links with a wide range of national and international partners through a range of academic events and invitations to visiting professors, curators and conservators and it engages in a range of collaborative research projects.  

The fixed term post of Head of Research will be held in conjunction with a permanent senior academic teaching and research post with concomitant reduced teaching responsibilities.  The post-holder will be a permanent member of The Courtauld’s faculty and will be expected to supervise PhD research but to have a reduction in the amount of teaching for the duration of the additional responsibility period.  S/he will have an excellent research record, and intend to pursue research actively in a field relevant to the research strategy of The Courtauld, furthering the subject as well as maintaining and enhancing The Courtauld’s research culture and high academic reputation.  S/he will play a leading role in representing The Courtauld in the wider academic community and will be a member of The Courtauld’s senior management team.

Candidates will demonstrate relevant research leadership experience, and the profile and ability to shape longer term strategy which will enhance the Courtauld’s international reputation and network of relationships.

50 GODDARD AVE
BROOKLINE, MA 02445
617-850-1242
mjcbac@hchc.edu

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THE MARY JAHARIS CENTER
for Byzantine Arts and Culture

Founded in 2010 through a generous gift from the Jaharis Family Foundation, the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture is dedicated to the promotion and advancement of knowledge about the rich heritage of Byzantine art and culture.

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