Petition to save Religious Studies at UNCG

Sent on behalf of Derek Krueger, UNC Greensboro:

Opportunities for Scholars at Risk

North of Byzantium and Dumbarton Oaks have announced two opportunities for scholars at risk due to Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine. Please share with your networks and invite scholars you know to apply (or apply yourself, if relevant):

  1. Research Grants of up to $5000 – applications due March 31, 2023
  2. Mentorship Program – applications due April 30, 2023


BIAA Support for Turkish Scholars

A Message from the British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara:

In response to the destructive impact of the 6th February earthquakes that struck south-eastern Türkiye, the British Institute at Ankara is providing up to five Emergency Research Facilitation Grants to support postdoctoral scholars at affected universities. The one-off grant of £2,000 is intended to help scholars to temporarily relocate to Ankara and resume their research at this difficult time. Applications must be received by the closing date of 20th March 2023.

You can find further information and details of Turkish Universities in the scheme and how to apply here.

Please pass this information on to any colleagues in Türkiye whom you think might benefit.

A message from the International Association of Byzantine Studies

Editors: Sergei Mariev (Mainz) and Annick Peters-Custot (Nantes) IT Support: Panagiotis Kanelatos (Athens)
The AIEB President, Bureau and all the scholars of Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman studies are following with great grief the tragic news about the disastrous earthquake that has devastated southern Turkey and Northern Syria. Our common research and studies are a tight link of international friendship and collaboration, and to these friends and colleagues we would like to express our  heartfelt condolences. The AIEB would also like to express its willingness to support all the scholars involved in the rescuing of the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman heritage in future projects. Once again, please accept our heartfelt condolences on the loss of your loved ones.
This message may also be viewed online:

Statement in response to the earthquake in Syria and Türkiye

BSANA wishes to convey its deepest concern and sadness at the humanitarian tragedy and loss of life following the earthquake in Syria and Türkiye this week. We wish to extend support for our members and colleagues affected by loss. Interested persons who wish to aid in humanitarian relief may consider donating to an initiative such as the UN Refugee Network, which works with the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

February 10, 2023

For an archive of this statement and others, please see the Diversity & Inclusion Committee page.

Petition to save the Art History MA program at the National University of Arts, Bucharest

Dear colleagues (with apologies for cross-posting),

Please consider reading and signing this petition to help save the Art History MA program “Visual and Curatorial Studies” at the National University of Arts, Bucharest, Romania.

On March 23, 2022, the Senate of the National University of Arts in Bucharest voted to discontinue the MA program “Visual and Curatorial Studies,” the only program with this profile within the University, and the only MA program of the Department of History and Theory of Art. This program is the oldest art history MA program in Romania, with graduates numbering many distinguished figures that act today as important members of the cultural and scholarly communities.

Art history is already a small and relatively “young” field of study in Romania, so removing this program is an awful decision, especially in this moment in time. I am helping my colleagues in Bucharest bring international attention to this issue in the hopes of having the decision revoked. We have set up a petition with more details here:

Thank you for your time and consideration!

Best wishes,

Alice Isabella Sullivan, PhD
Assistant Professor of Medieval Art and Architecture
Department of the History of Art and Architecture
Neubauer Faculty Fellow, 2021-2022
Tufts University | 11 Talbot Ave | Medford, MA 02155

Statement on the Past and Present of Ukraine and its Cultural Heritage – from the ICMA and BSANA

As scholarly organizations devoted to the study and preservation of the cultural heritage of the Middle Ages, the International Center of Medieval Art (ICMA) and the Byzantine Studies Association of North America (BSANA) deplore the Russian attacks on Ukraine and the continuing threat to human life, artistic treasures, and cultural heritage. We object strongly to the statements of the President of the Russian Federation, V. V. Putin, published in his July 2021 essay entitled “On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians.” While the title ostensibly conveys fraternity, the real aim of Putin’s essay was to delegitimize Ukraine as a country. This has been part of Russia’s ongoing attempts to falsify Ukrainian history and reclaim its sites and monuments. Putin has made a tendentious case that Moscow is the legitimate heir to the medieval polity of Kyivan Rus’, “continuing the tradition of ancient Russian statehood,” whereas the Ukrainian nation is the product of various “distorting” influences emerging from the West. Putin’s speech of February 21, 2022 further declared that Ukraine had no legitimacy as a nation-state, and laid claim to its cultural heritage as “an inalienable part of our [the Russian Federation’s] own history, culture and spiritual space.” While the history of Ukraine is integral to Russia’s territorial, spiritual, and ideological identity, Ukraine’s identity is not reducible to being a precursor to Russia. Ukraine’s unique history, art, and culture should be acknowledged, respected, and protected in these troubling times.

All too often, our own fields have been complicit in failing to examine inherited narratives that subsume the Ukrainian people, their history, and monuments under the rubric of “Russia,” thus helping to facilitate the historical distortions made more explicitly by President Putin. While acknowledging the irreducible complexity of the intertwined histories of Russia and Ukraine, we also recognize the right of Ukraine to the cultural patrimony of its own territory. The monuments of Kyivan Rus’ in Kyiv, Chernihiv, and elsewhere, are treasures of the Eastern Christian tradition and of the world’s cultural heritage. They are rightly safeguarded and administered by the legitimately elected government of Ukraine and by its cultural ministries and private institutions. Moreover, as historians, we underscore the very diversity of the region that Putin’s essay belittled. Like most medieval locales, Ukraine was home to peoples of different ethnic groups and religious faiths. Jewish, Islamic, and Armenian communities, among others, were integral to cultural life in the area in the Middle Ages, and their art and architecture endures within Ukraine’s borders. We also affirm the continued diversity of its modern nation-state, as well as the LBGTQIA+ communities in the country, who face great dangers under the Russian invasion. We stand with our colleagues whose nuanced work on Ukraine’s history poses the greatest challenges to Putin’s monolithic and mythical view of history.

We earnestly call for the withdrawal of Russian forces from the territory of Ukraine, for the protection of all people in the region, and for the restitution of cultural patrimony to its legitimate custodians.

  • The Executive Committee, Board of Directors, Associates, and Advocacy Committee of the International Center of Medieval Art
  • The Governing Board of the Byzantine Studies Association of North America

International Forum on the Venizelou Metro Station, Thessaloniki

Institute for Advanced Study and UCLA Cotsen Institute of Archaeology present
Sunday, September 26
9:00 AM (PST) / 12:00 PM (EST) / 7:00 PM (Greece)
The uncovering of unique Late Roman and Byzantine remains in the course of excavations for a new metro system in Thessaloniki has called into question how a country comes to terms with the treatment and display of its material past. This international forum aims to present factual information about the significance of the finds, review decisions made by the Ministry of Culture and the Central Archaeological Council concerning the Venizelou Station remains, summarize past and ongoing litigation in Greek courts, and discuss the practical solutions offered by engineers. Following brief presentations by four speakers, listeners will be able to ask questions about the remains, the solutions to the technical challenges that their preservation on site presents, and their significance for the city’s future.
  • Angelos Chaniotes, Professor of Ancient History and Classics, Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton
  • Costa Carras, Founder of ELLINIKI ETAIRIA-Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage / EUROPA NOSTRA Council member
  • Vlasis Koumousis, Professor Emeritus of Structural Engineering, School of Civil Engineering, National Technical University of Athens
  • Maria Mavroudi, Professor of History and Classics, University of California, Berkeley
Moderator: Sharon Gerstel, Professor of Byzantine Art and Archaeology, UCLA
Please register below:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Simultaneous translation into Greek will be available.

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