The Byzness

The Byzness, 15th January 2012


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Being in Between: Byzantium in the Eleventh Century
Oxford, 24 – 26 March 2012

The on-line registration portal for the 45th Spring Symposium of Byzantine Studies, ‘Being in Between: Byzantium in the Eleventh Century’, Oxford, 24 – 26 March 2012, is now open. The following link will take you to the University Stores, where you will be able to pay registration fees [Full/ SPBS/ Student-Unwaged] and purchase limited accommodation and spaces at the Conference Dinner on 25 March. Please add each desired item to your basket before proceeding to checkout.

The latest programme for the symposium is available here.

The registration fee includes coffee, tea and sandwich lunches on Saturday, Sunday and Monday and wine reception on Sunday. Please note that registration fees will rise to £85 [Full], £75 [SPBS] and £35 [Students/Unwaged] from 1 March, 2012.

For any further enquiries about registration or accommodation, please email

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The State of the Arts: Early Applied Arts
King’s College London

A series of workshops on early Applied Arts: 28 January: Textiles; 25 February: Ceramics; 31 March: Mosaics.
The aim is to draw attention to the richness of these materials, both for our understanding of the past, and for our understanding of the crafts themselves. We hope also to explore the difficulty in displaying such materials: this discussion will be enhanced by the participation of museum colleagues.


National Programme for the Development of Humanities

An international team consisting of ten young researchers seeks five new collaborators to take part in a comparative study on the transmission of intellectual traditions between various cultures.

We will focus on texts and ideas as well as artistic models whose origins can be traced back to Antiquity and which were later either credulously received or deeply reworked, or even provided with completely new meanings and contexts. We hope that owing to the variety of our research specialisations not only will we be able to look closely at particular cases of intercultural transmission, but we will also be in a position of constructing a more general, synthetic model of the phenomenon we study, taking into account the differences between various historical periods and regions of Europe and the Middle Eastern world. Thus, whereas the case studies will allow us to grasp the complexity of our research problem, the synthesising efforts will enable us to characterise a broader tendency and a specific intellectual formation. Finally, we encompass the beginnings of the modern era in order to observe the mechanisms of paradigm transformation as well as the continuity and endurance of a tradition.

The full announcement, including information about applying, is available here.

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“The Global Middle Ages: From Influence to Translation”
Call for Papers
Edinburgh, May 2012

European, Islamic and Chinese societies engaged in a broad practice of cultural, artistic and ideological exchange during the period that was known in Europe as the ‘Middle Ages’ and that coincided with classical phases in eastern and western Asia. Adopting and passing on traditions through trade, pilgrimage and a range of other encounters, peoples of diverse backgrounds developed patterns of representation and exchange that have gained the interest of scholars for several centuries.
Beginning with suggestions of influence and evolving through to theories of translation, the study of societal interactions during this period has been a transitional one. As such, this conference seeks to explore the embodiment of cultural exchange through the art and architecture of the medieval period as well as the methodological shifts that have occurred in the study of this period of wide multi-cultural engagement.
In light of the transitions evident in both the art of the period and in significant studies of it, we welcome papers related to the topics of global interaction between the years of 400 and 1500 and the range of scholarly approaches to that material. By examining traditional approaches to this material in relation to newer ways of engaging with it, this conference seeks to open discussion of new ways of approaching ideas of exchange and material in which cultural interventions are evident.

We invite abstracts of 250 words to be submitted to  by 10 February, 2012, which deal with cultural encounters and the study of such interactions. Papers focusing on a particular historical moment in China, India, Central Asia, the Middle East or Europe will be welcome. Possible themes to consider include but are not limited to:

– Conceptions of influence, appropriation and translation in scholarly discourse and curatorial practice
– The exchange of visual and material culture through diplomatic gifts, pilgrimage, commerce and conquest
– Patterns of encounter and the process of exchange

This conference is organised as part of the research cluster on Art in the Global Middle Ages at the University of Edinburgh. For details of the newly launched MSc Art in the Global Middle Ages, please visit:


South Italy, Sicily and the Mediterranean: Cultural Interactions
Second Call for Papers
17th – 21st July 2012, Melbourne, Australia

Hosted by the Centre for Greek Studies and the A.D. Trendall Research Centre for Ancient Mediterranean Studies at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia, this conference will focus on the movement of people and interactions of culture in the region of Southern Italy and Sicily from antiquity until the present. The program will include exhibitions at the Hellenic Museum and the Museo Italiano of ancient Greek vases from Southern Italy and Sicily as well as other pieces from the collection of the A.D. Trendall Research Centre. It will also include a tour of the world-class resources held at the A.D. Trendall Research Centre at La Trobe University.

This inter-disciplinary conference seeks to foster critical analysis of geographical and chronological interconnections in Southern Italy and Sicily. Consideration of cultural interaction, population movements, and changing religious and philosophical ideas over a period of approximately 3000 years will prompt scholarly discussion around continuity and change over time in this region of the Mediterranean.

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

Professor David Abulafia, Professorial Fellow of Gonville and Caius College and Professor of Mediterranean History at Cambridge University
Associate Professor Mia Fuller, Associate Professor of Italian Studies at the University of California, Berkeley
Professor Sebastiano Tusa, Professor of Palaeontology at the University Suor Orsola Benincasa of Naples
Professor Roger Wilson, Professor of the Archaeology of the Roman Empire and Director of the Centre for the Study of Ancient Sicily at the University of British Columbia

Papers focusing on Southern Italy and Sicily are invited from any discipline. Please submit 300-word abstracts to Sarah Midford at by 6th February 2012. Papers will be programmed into 30 minute timeslots and should be no longer than 20 minutes. Graduate student papers are most welcome. Some themes may include, but are not limited to:

The ancient Greeks in South Italy and Sicily
The Romans in South Italy and Sicily
Greek and Roman Culture in South Italy and Sicily
Sicily¹s place in relation to South Italy
Migration to and from South Italy and Sicily
Islamic rule in South Italy and Sicily
Colonisation in South Italy and Sicily
Spain and Southern Italy and Sicily
South Italy and Sicily in the 20th century & beyond
South Italy and Sicily in the Modern Mediterranean
Trade between South Italy and other states and Sicily

The conference website is located at:

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