Dissidence and Persecution in Byzantium

Dissidence and Persecution in Byzantium lead image

Dissidence and Persecution in Byzantium, 20th Australasian Association for Byzantine Studies Conference, Macquarie University, July 19–21, 2019

The Byzantine empire was rarely a stable and harmonious state during its long and eventful history. It was often in strife with those outside its borders and with those within them, and with so much power invested in its political and ecclesiastical structures it was ready to implode at times. This could result in persecution and the silencing of dissident voices from various quarters of society. The mechanisms by which the authorities controlled civil disorder and dissent, as well as discouraging criticism of imperial policies, could be brutal at times. In what sense was it possible, if at all, to enjoy freedom of speech and action in Byzantium? Was the law upheld or ignored when vested interests were at stake? How vulnerable did minorities feel and how conformist was religious belief at the end of the day? The theme of the conference aims to encourage discussion on a number fronts relating to the use and abuse of power within the history of Byzantium.

Professor David Olster, University of Kentucky
The Idolatry of the Jews and the Anti-Judaizing Roots of Seventh- and Early Eighth-Century Iconoclasm

Associate Professor Jitse H. F. Dijkstra, University of Ottawa
The Avenging Sword?  Imperial Legislation Against Temples in the Fourth and Fifth Centuries


Advance registration required. Registration closes July 15, 2019.