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The Byzness, 28 July, 2013

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It is with great pleasure that we announce the call for papers for what I understand is the first OUBS-sponsored session at the Leeds International Medieval Congress. For more information on the congress itself please visit http://www.leeds.ac.uk/ims/imc/.

The Komnenian Empire: La Belle Époque Finale de Rome?

The Komnenian period is undoubtedly a crucial turning point for the medieval Roman Empire, the age in which the rise of Latin Christendom brought the antique Empire’s two Christian children into closer contact than they had been for half a millennium. This is the last period when the Empire can truly be considered a ‘superpower’, with the Rhomaioi campaigning in the Balkans, Anatolia, Italy, Syria, and Egypt, and vast Crusader armies crossing the Empire itself. A king of Jerusalem and a sultan of ‘Rum’ visited Constantinople and did the emperor homage. Imperial coinage retained its place as the Mediterranean standard, having been reformed by Alexios I. There were religious controversies, both with the Latins, and within the imperial Church. Moreover, it was an era which produced some of the greatest historiographers of the Byzantine millennium, as well as a vast amount of other literature in the so-called Komnenian Renaissance.

Yet how are we to characterise the Komnenian achievement, as a successful recovery from the eleventh-century crisis, or as only a temporary solution which in some ways itself contributed to the decline of c.1180-1204? What might even be the criteria and methodologies upon which such a question would rest? This session will address these issues, and warmly invites early-career and established researchers to submit an abstract of 250 words to byzantine.society@gmail.com, including also a brief academic biography.

Some suggested topics might be:

·         The Komnenian army

·         The Komnenoi, the aristocracy, and imperial authority

·         Coinage and the economy

·         Reconquest in Asia Minor and the Anatolian Turkish polities

·         The ‘Komnenian Renaissance’

·         Government and administration

·         Basileia ton Rhomaion and Imperium Romanorum: the ‘Greek’ and ‘German’ Empires

     ‘Rise and Fall of Empire’: a useful historical construct or a misleading narrative?


Call for papers: Leeds International Medieval Congress 7-10 July 2014

The Medieval Landscape/Seascape

Organised by Catherine Clarke, University of Southampton and Leonie Hicks, Canterbury Christ Church University

Writing about the medieval landscape and environment has a rich and long tradition and is an area in which many of the disciplines that comprise medieval studies have made significant contributions. Scholars working on ideas of the landscape, concepts of space and place as well as in the developing field of environmental humanities have added to our theoretical framework for understanding people’s relationships with the environment in the past. We hope to organise a series of sessions focusing on medieval landscapes/seascapes broadly conceived. We welcome proposals that draw on historical, literary, archaeological, art-historical and musicological approaches and sources. Potential contributors might like to think about the following themes:

the place of the landscape/seascape in historical writing

–          landscape/maritime archaeology

–          medieval urban landscapes

–          the landscape of particular events: e.g. judicial processes, battles, processions, monastic foundation, administration, peace-making etc.

–          experiencing the landscape/seascape

–          tools and theories for understanding the medieval landscape/seascape: e.g. digital humanities, knowledge exchange, etc.

–          different national landscape traditions, including antiquarian and chorographic traditions, and how they affect our understanding of the       medieval past.

It is hoped that, through these sessions we will raise and begin to answer a number of key questions about landscapes/seascapes in the Middle Ages. What is the relationship between the experience and conceptualisation of landscapes/seascape? What gaps exist in the evidence for the landscape/seascape as a physical, economic, social and cultural phenomenon, and can interdisciplinary work help us to bridge these? What innovative methods and approaches can we bring to the study of medieval landscape/seascape?

Please send abstracts for 20 minute papers to Leonie Hicks, Canterbury Christ Church University (leonie.hicks@canterbury.ac.uk) by no later than 26 August 2013.

Proposals should include

·        Title

·        Abstract (max 200 words)

·        Your name, institution, and role

·        Full postal and electronic contact details

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Columbia University is advertising for an assistant professorship in Byzantine history, please see here for more details.
The University of Chicago Divinity School seeks to appoint a tenure-track Assistant Professor in the field of Byzantine Theology and Byzantine Culture. Please see the attached document for details.
The Department of Literature at the University of California, Santa Cruz is searching for two positions during 2013-14 in the area of Mediterranean Studies, one in Ancient Comparative and one in Medieval/Early Modern, conceived of as a “cluster hire.”  The position in Medieval/Early Modern Mediterranean Studies is found below.  The description of the Ancient Comparative Mediterranean Studies position is available for viewing at the following URL: http://apo.ucsc.edu/academic_employment/jobs/JPF00036-14.pdf.

Medieval and/or early modern Mediterranean Literatures and Cultures. Work in at least two languages, including Arabic, Byzantine Greek, Italian, Ottoman Turkish, Persian, Spanish, or other relevant languages. Candidates should have a strong grounding in the tradition of their primary literatures, with interests in ways the larger Mediterranean region is a relevant category of analysis. We seek scholars with the appropriate linguistic expertise whose work transcends traditional literary and textual approaches by conceptualizing the medieval and/or early modern Mediterranean as a dynamic space of cultural and historical significance. The successful candidate will be expected to teach large undergraduate lecture courses and small advanced seminars, and to actively participate in the graduate program. This position carries a five-course equivalency workload, which normally means teaching four courses over three quarters and carrying other academic and service responsibilities. The ability to contribute significantly to graduate education and the mentoring of graduate students is highly desirable. The successful candidate must be able to work with students, faculty and staff from a wide range of social and cultural backgrounds. We are especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity and excellence of the academic community through their research, teaching and/or service.

RANK: Assistant Professor
SALARY: Commensurate with qualifications and experience
BASIC QUALIFICATIONS: PhD or equivalent degree (in hand by June 1, 2014) in Comparative Literature, Medieval/Renaissance Studies, Near Eastern Languages and Literatures, Romance Languages and Literatures, or related fields; a record of research and scholarly productivity, including a book in preparation or forthcoming; a record of college teaching; competence in at least two linguistic traditions.
PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: Experience working with graduate students; competence in a third language literature.
POSITION AVAILABLE: July 1, 2014, with academic year beginning September 2014. Position contingent upon final budgetary approval.
TO APPLY:  Applications are accepted via the UCSC Academic Recruit online system, and must include an informative letter of application (clearly outlining your educational background, teaching experience, and publication record), vitae, three current confidential letters of recommendation* (2010 or later), two syllabi, and a short representative writing sample (30 pages max. in PDF format). Applicants are encouraged to submit a statement addressing their contributions to diversity through their research, teaching, and/or service. Documents/materials must be submitted as PDF files.
Apply at https://recruit.ucsc.edu/apply/JPF00037 Refer to Position #JPF00037-14 in all correspondence
*All letters will be treated as confidential per University of California policy and California state law. For any reference letter provided via a third party (i.e., dossier service, career center), direct the author to UCSC’s confidentiality statement at http://apo.ucsc.edu/confstm.htm
CLOSING DATE: Review of applications will begin on October 15, 2013. To ensure full consideration, applications should be complete and letters of recommendation received by this date. The position will remain open until filled, but not later than 6/30/2014.

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