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The Byzness, 11th January 2014

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Heresy from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages, TORCH Seminar Room, Saturday 14 March 2015, 11am-5pm

The past few decades have seen a burgeoning scholarly interest in heresy in early Christianity, late antiquity and the middle ages. Research on Christian heresy and its representation (‘heresiology’) has proliferated, in particular, in two periods: late antiquity and the later middle ages. However, despite deriving inspiration from similar trends in modern cultural theory and critical historical analysis, these two fields of scholarship have developed largely in isolation from one another. This workshop seeks to bring together historians working on heresy across the late-antique and medieval periods, to consider how and why heresy (or its representation) might change over time and in different contexts, and to think through the possibilities of common (or indeed divergent) approaches.

To register, or for more information, e-mail Robin Whelan (

A sandwich lunch is available; please request it on registration and supply any dietary requirements. Thanks are due to the Oxford Centre for Late Antiquity and the Oxford Medieval Studies Network for their generous support.

11:00 Registration and Welcome

11:15 Session 1: Chair: Antonia Fitzpatrick (St John’s)

Richard Flower (Exeter) ‘The birth of scientific heresiology in late antiquity’

Jill Moore (Birkbeck) ‘Set a thief to catch a thief? Family experience of heresy among thirteenth- and fourteenth-century Italian inquisitors’

12:45 Lunch

13:45 Session 2: Chair: Phil Booth (Trinity)

Liz Mincin (St Andrews) ‘Curing the common soul: reexamining the heresiological motif of disease in Middle Byzantium’Ali Bonner (Jesus) ‘The reception of Pelagius and interactionist theory’

15:15 Coffee

15:45 Session 3: Chair: Robin Whelan (TORCH/Brasenose)

Lucy Sackville (York) ‘The great divide: inquisition texts and the history of heresy’

Plenary Discussion

Conrad Leyser (Worcester) and Kantik Ghosh (Trinity)

Please see here for the poster


Vienna Bibliography no 156: November-December 2014

Please find the latest bibliography here.


Dumbarton Oaks ICFA launches its Oral Historu Initiative

Dear colleagues,

ICFA is pleased to announce the online publication of our Oral History Initiative: Each interview is represented with a page that includes a brief biographical sketch of the interviewee, a video of the interview, and corresponding transcripts (when available). All videos are available in full length, both on ICFA’s website and through Vimeo:

ICFA launched its Oral History Initiative in 2011, with the support of the Dumbarton Oaks Archives (DOA). Our aim was to speak directly with individuals related to ICFA’s holdings, whether they participated in fieldwork or research projects documented by our collections or managed the department’s diverse collections over the years. Our main goal is to gather information, such as first-hand descriptions of fieldwork or personal recollections of key individuals, that may not otherwise be captured in documents or photographs. This work is ongoing and the Oral History Initiative site will continue to grow as we conduct additional interviews and create new transcripts.

The ICFA Oral History Initiative complements the Dumbarton Oaks Archives’ Oral History Project: While DOA interviews focus on affiliates’ memories of Dumbarton Oaks and their perceptions of how it has changed over time, ICFA’s oral history interviews center on targeted questions about the people and fieldwork projects represented in ICFA’s collections. Together, these interviews provide a vivid portrait of the institution and the remarkable individuals who participated in its myriad activities over the past 75 years.
ICFA wishes to thank our wonderful colleagues for their collaboration, support, and feedback: James Carder, Lain Wilson, Deb Brown, Prathmesh Mengane, and Molly Marcusse. Very special thanks goes to Caitlin Ballotta, who creatively and meticulously planned and created the webpage for ICFA’s Oral History Initiative during her Summer 2014 internship in ICFA.
Happy New Year!
The ICFA Team



‘Local Connections in the Literature of Late Antiquity’, The third annual conference of the International Society for Late Antique Literary Studies (ISLALS) will be held at TORCH, The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities, on 1-2 July 2015
This conference, on the topic of ‘local connections’, will explore the place of
literature in the shifting geography of late antiquity. The transfer of imperial power away from Rome and the founding of Constantinople in the early fourth century had a profound effect on the literary culture of the ancient Mediterranean. In the west, this is the era in which ‘Roman’ literature can be seen to become ‘Latin’ literature, as authors and readers spread out from the capital to form regional literary communities in other parts of Italy, Gaul, Spain, and Africa. Greek literature had been produced in these sorts of local contexts for a much longer period of time, but in the east as well, new centres of literary activity were emerging in late antiquity. Papers will
therefore examine the ways in which local landscapes and communities
are represented in late antique literary texts.

Other questions to
address might include: how distinctive are the various regional literatures of the world of late antiquity, and what kinds of relationships existed between them? In what ways did later Latin and Greek authors shape the dialogue between local identities and international institutions, such as the Roman Empire or the Christian Church? What was the role of late antique texts in the formation of modern European literatures, and how have local considerations influenced their reception in other periods?

If you would like to participate, please send an abstract of your
paper via email attachment to the steering committee by March 1, 2015:
Scott McGill (, Joseph Pucci (, and David Bright ( Papers should be no longer than thirty minutes in length

Thanks to the generosity of the Oxford Faculty of Classics and the Oxford Centre for Late Antiquity, lunch, refreshments, and a closing banquet will be
provided for conference speakers. Other meals, as well as lodging and travel will be the responsibility of participants. Please send queries
about conference particulars to Ian Fielding ( General queries about ISLALS may be sent to any member of the steering committee.


‘Town and Country in the Byzantine World: Social and Economic Perspectives’, American Research Centre in Sofia, 7th-8th May 2015

Please find the poster here and the call for papers here.

Deadline for abstracts is 1st March 2015.


Ideology, Knowledge, and Society in the Eastern Mediterranean, Fourth

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International Graduate Student Conference of CEMS

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Central European University

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Budapest, 4-6 June 2015

We are pleased to announce the call for papers for the forthcoming graduate student conference hosted by Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies (CEMS) at Central European University. The conference will run from June 4 to June 6, 2015. The workshop intends to provide a forum for graduate students specializing in any discipline related to the study of the eastern Mediterranean from antiquity to early modernity to present their current research, exchange ideas, and develop scholarly networks (see “Conference Description” below).

Please send a short paper proposal (approximately 300 words) together with a paragraph about your affiliation and academic interests by February 15, 2015 to

The organizing committee intends to publish a selection of interrelated papers, based on their quality and pertinence to the topic, in an edited volume.

Conference Description:

One of the key objectives of the workshop is to work against the grain of long-established disciplinary boundaries by discussing the ways in which ideology and knowledge were inherited, transmitted, and exchanged in all areas of society in diachronic and synchronic terms:

  • How was ideology or knowledge – referring to theory of knowledge (from philosophy to political thought) as well as its practical applications (technology, warfare etc.) – particularized through accommodation, modification, and departure once it was inherited?
    • Under what circumstances and frameworks can one see genuine curiosity, selective accommodation, and outright rejection of cultural interaction within and/or across polity/polities?

Papers will be invited to present case studies and reflect upon the question of how, in an increasingly diversified and specialized academic environment, meaningful comparative and/or longue-durée studies across disciplines and source languages (inter alia, Latin, Greek, Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Syriac, Coptic, Hebrew), can be accomplished.

Possible themes include, but are not limited to:
• Philosophy and Science in the Late Antique, Byzantine, and Ottoman Worlds
• History of Learning and Culture
• Religious Debate and Philosophical Dialogue
• Byzantine Literature
• Legal Thought and Practice
• Political Thought and the Art of Rulership
• Intellectual History and History of Reading
• History Writing, Memory, and Identity
• Knowledge and Authority
• Cultural Translation and Knowledge Production
• Artistic Interaction and Exchange in the Mediterranean
• Ideology and Legitimation of Power
• Performance in Byzantium
• Cultural History of Warfare and Transfer of Military Technology

Keynote Speakers:

George Karamanolis (University of Vienna)
Helen Pfeifer (University of Cambridge)

Accommodation and Travel Grants

All participants will be offered accommodation for the full duration of the conference at CEU Residence Center. A limited amount of travel grants are available to encourage participation from a wide range of individuals and institutions. Those who wish to be considered for the grant should include an additional justification in their paper proposals.

Organizing Committee

Ivan Marić (PhD Student, Department of Medieval Studies)
Nirvana Silnović (PhD Student, Department of Medieval Studies, CEMS Junior Member Representative)
H. Evren Sünnetçioğlu (PhD Student, Department of Medieval Studies)
Máté Veres (PhD Student, Department of Philosophy)

For further information, do not hesitate to contact the organizers at or at our Facebook page (



Mary Jaharis Centre for Byzantine Art and Culture Grants


The Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture is pleased to announce its 2015-2016 grant competition. Our grants reflect the Mary Jaharis Center’s commitment to fostering the field of Byzantine studies through the support of graduate students and early career researchers and faculty.

Mary Jaharis Center Dissertation Development Grants target graduate students who have completed all coursework, language requirements, and exams necessary to advance to Ph.D. candidacy. Grants are meant to assist with the costs of travel associated with the development of a dissertation proposal in the field of Byzantine studies broadly conceived, e.g., travel to potential research sites, museum collections, research and special collections libraries. The goal of these grants is to assist students in refining their initial ideas into a feasible, interesting, and fundable doctoral project.

Mary Jaharis Center Dissertation Grants are awarded to advanced graduate students working on Ph.D. dissertations in the field of Byzantine studies broadly conceived. These grants are meant to help defray the costs of research-related expenses, e.g., travel, photography/digital images, microfilm.

Mary Jaharis Center Publication Grants support book-length publications in the field of Byzantine studies broadly conceived. Grants are aimed at early career academics. Preference will be given to postdocs and assistant professors, though applications from non-tenure track faculty and associate and full professors will be considered. We encourage the submission of first-book projects.

The application deadline for all grants is February 15, 2015. For further information, please see



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