CFP: Priests and their Manuscripts in the Holy Land and Sinai

Priests and their Manuscripts in the Holy Land and Sinai

Conference at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna Institute for Medieval Research, Department of Byzantine Research

8–10 November 2023

Call for Papers

Where did priests learn to read and write? What did they copy and where? How did their libraries look? What did they do with their books? Little is known about these topics, and a general overview is missing, especially if we focus on clerics active in the Holy Land and Sinai. By addressing these and related topics, this conference will aim at gaining a better understanding about the social and cultural role of priests latu sensu (preferably priests and priestmonks, but also monks, nuns, lectors, deacons, bishops) in the Holy Land and Sinai.

We invite the submission of abstracts (300 words max.) for 20-minute papers dealing with manuscripts copied, owned, and used by priests in Sinai and Palestine during the Byzantine and immediate post-Byzantine period in the languages of the Christian Orient. Contributions by historians, archaeologists, art historians, epigraphers, liturgiologists, which aim at shedding light on the social and cultural role of priests in this region and historical period are welcome as well.

Topics that that may be addressed include the following, but participants are encouraged to develop their own questions and approaches within the parameters of the conference theme:
Social context: Which sources offer information about the social role and cultural life of priests in the Holy Land and Sinai? What can we learn from them?
Priests as copyists of manuscripts: Where and how did priests learn how to read and write? What was their level of literacy? Which script styles did they use? Which techniques of book-making did they employ? How many languages did they know and write?
Priests as owners of manuscripts: Which manuscripts did priests own? What do we know about their private ‘libraries’?
Priests and their use of manuscripts: Which signs of use (including annotations, colophons, etc.) did priests leave on the manuscripts they used? Where were manuscripts used and how?

Organizer: Dr. Giulia Rossetto (Austrian Academy of Sciences)

Please send the title of your paper and an abstract (max. 300 words) to Giulia Rossetto (giulia.rossetto@oeaw.ac.at) no later than March 15, 2023. The speakers will be notified by April 15.

If selected, we can offer you reimbursement for your travel expenses (second-class) as well as pre-paid accommodation for two nights in Vienna.

This conference is organized within the framework of the project “Priests, Books and the Library at Saint Catherine’s (Sinai)” (T1192 – G25) funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF.

 

Database of Religious History: Call for Contributions

The Database of Religious History, based at the University of British Columbia, is a digital, open access, and queryable repository of quantitative and qualitative information with the goal of covering the breadth of human religious experience. Begun in 2013, the DRH now has almost a thousand entries by qualified scholars, covering religious groups, places, and texts (the three types of polls that make up the entries in the database), but we need your help! As part of a new initiative we are attempting to expand our entries that deal with Late Antique and Medieval Christianity and Judaism, and Early Islam, as well as other contemporary religious movements in Europe, North Africa, and Western Asia. In an effort to build the database in as swift a manner as possible, and improve the quality of any analyses produced with it, the DRH is offering $300 CAD honoraria for each completed entry.

If you are a PhD candidate or above and would like to contribute an entry on any religious group, place, or text, please contact Dr. Ian Randall (irandall@mail.ubc.ca) or sign up for the database at https://religiondatabase.org/landing/get-involved and select Dr. Randall as your entry editor.

Diogenes Journal: New Deadline of March 1, 2023

CFP via Jacopo Marcon

On behalf of the general editors of the Postgraduate journal “Diogenes” from the University of Birmingham, I kindly ask you if you could please circulate the updated CFC with the new deadline (1st of March, 2023). Attached you can find the new poster and the link to the GEM page (Diogenes Journal – Gate to the Eastern Mediterranean (wordpress.com).

Diogenes Journal

Since its launch in January 2014, Diogenes is an open-access and peer-review online journal edited by the postgraduate students at the Centre for Byzantine, Ottoman, and Modern Greek Studies, University of Birmingham. This year Diogenes is expanding its editorial team to other disciplines within the College of Arts and Law and also its audience. The new refreshed Diogenes is now collaborating with the School of Theology and Religion and the Department of History of Art.

Diogenes aims to bring together postgraduate and early career researchers and provide a platform at which they can further develop their research ideas and communicate them to a general audience.

The articles published in Diogenes cover a wide range of research interests, yet they all fall under the umbrella of the often-separate fields of Byzantine, Ottoman and Modern Greek Studies. We look forward to any article that actively engages with any of these fields, from universities in the UK and abroad. It is published twice a year.

Therefore, indicative topics cover yet are not limited to:

  • Byzantine archaeology, material culture, art history and textual analyses
  • Ottoman history, archaeology, literature and art
  • Modern Greek history, literature, film, pop culture, and politics
  • Book Reviews in BOMGS
  • Theoretical Reflections and Methodological explorations on BOMGS

Before submitting, please consult the author manuscript guidelines (Diogenes Manuscript Guidelines)

If you have any questions regarding getting involved in Diogenes or submitting articles or reviews, please contact the editors at:

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS

The editorial team is proud to announce the Call for Contributions for the 15th issue, to be published in June 2023. We look forward to receiving contributions in English by postgraduate students in Byzantine, Ottoman, and/or Modern Greek Studies in the UK and abroad, in the following forms:

Article

We welcome articles on topics of history, archaeology, anthropology, or on any other field relating to the three areas of our Centre. Contributions should be between 3,000 and 5,000 words and must include a bibliography (excepted from the word count). Articles should follow the Chicago Manual of Style and should include a 150-word abstract. It is the author’s responsibility to obtain permission in written form to use any copyrighted image.

Book Review

Reviews of between 700 and 1,000 words are welcome on any work published in the last three years in the fields of Byzantine, Ottoman, and/or Modern Greek Studies. If you are interested in contributing, please contact the general editors about the choice of book for review before submitting.

Supplementum

This section aims to present the diversity of postgraduate research activities and opportunities in Byzantine, Ottoman, and/or Modern Greek Studies. Contributions between 500 and 1,000 words are welcome. Types of contribution may include, but are not limited to, archaeological reports, thesis summaries, conference reports, workshop reports, student society introductions, notices of events, etc.

For enquiries or submission, please contact the general editors: Danielle Krikorian, Penny Mantouvalou and Jacopo Marcon at: diogenesjournal@outlook.com

The deadline for contributions for the Winter Issue is 1 March 2023. Contributors will be informed by the general editors about the status of their submission(s) within four weeks of receipt.

CFP: Interfacing with linguistic norms, 323 BCE – 1453 CE

Call for Papers: Interfacing with linguistic norms, 323 BCE – 1453 CE 

Organisers: Dr Chiara Monaco, Dr Ugo Mondini

This panel focuses on the use of linguistic norms in literature between Antiquity and the Middle Ages. From the idea of Hellenismos/Latinitas/ʿArabiyya until the development of the concept of ‘national language’, the promotion of language correctness and the imitation of canonical texts are elements of continuity in the endless compromise between norms and usage. At the same time, every literature has breakpoints in which canons are contested/complemented by new (literary and/or linguistic) models; consequently, the interfacing with norms changes.  

Our aim is to study what happens when literature interfaces with norms; the following research questions are the foundation of our reflection:  

  1. To what extent do norms influence usage and vice versa? Does the use comply with the norm always and in the same way, or not?  
  2. How is the terminology of norms shaped and how does it change throughout time?  
  3. What is the relationship between literature and the formulation of linguistic norms? And which role does the idea of literary canon play in the formulation of grammatical norms? 
  4. What happens to customary norms and their use in literature when the canon changes? What is the reaction from contemporary voices?  

The panel focuses on a period longer than Antiquity (323 BCE – 1453 CE) to understand if, when and how the use of norms changes throughout time. This allows making broader considerations on the topic, which are particularly helpful to understand 1) canonical texts, their transmission, and their reception(s); 2) how linguistic norms act in diachrony; 3) how norms shape language usages and vice versa; 4) how the relationship between norms and usage changes over time.  

The aim of this panel is to gather scholars working on norms, the reception of norms, the relationship between grammatical texts and literary/non-literary usages in different traditions, and literature within its historical context. We would be particularly glad to discuss case studies that relate norms from ancient or medieval sources to their origin from past models and their use, misuse, or rejection within literary texts, in a diachronic perspective; or case studies that stress breakpoints along with their consequences. The panel will also be the perfect occasion to reflect on how past and present scholarship has dealt with this challenging topic. Latin and Greek literature and language are the fields of expertise of both organisers; however, proposals on different languages and cultures of the broader area of antique and medieval Eurasia and Africa will be considered with great favour. In this case, chronological boundaries can be discussed with organisers, although the panel focuses on premodern era. 

Interested scholars are invited to submit abstracts of maximum 500 words by 20th February 2023 to the organisers (chiara.monaco@ugent.beugo.mondini93@gmail.com).  

We will select speakers working on different languages, epochs, and geographical areas. After the selection, we will provide the speakers with a methodological framework, which they will be asked to consider while producing their paper. This way, consistency and dialogue are assured during the panel in Coimbra.

For more details about the conference, see: https://cechfluc.wixsite.com/ccclassics2023

Society for Late Antiquity CFP, 2024 SCS

Society for Late Antiquity

SCS Chicago 4–7 January 2024

The Society for Late Antiquity is happy to announce our call for papers for the 2024 SCS meetings!

Animals provided opportunities for conceptual explication, political management, religious experimentation, Christian theology, and literary playfulness. We invite papers on the animal, the human, and/or their interactions and interrelations in the era of late antiquity.

Send questions and anonymous abstracts to Kelly Holob: kholob@uchicago.edu. Abstracts due February 6!

Full CFP available here:

https://classicalstudies.org/annual-meeting/society-late-antiquity-panel-animal-human-interactions-late-antiquity

The Medieval Black Sea Project

Call for Contributions
The Medieval Black Sea Project
Princeton University
Due date for preliminary proposals: December 15, 2022

Material Culture of the Medieval Black Sea

The Medieval Black Sea Project investigates the history and culture of the Black Sea during the Middle Ages. As part of this project, we are examining material objects produced by or transmitted by the people who inhabited the sea and the broader region between the 4th and 15th centuries. We invite researchers to contribute a short essay on a relevant object, which will be published on the Project’s website.

Our aim is to assemble case studies on objects relating to both “major” and “minor” arts, such as architecture, painting, sculpture, ceramics, manuscripts, textiles and jewelry – as well as technological evidence and medieval music and texts. These case studies will complement the Project’s seminar series (2022-2023) and conference (2023-2024) as well as the other resources published on the website. We hope in this way to ask new research questions and reveal historic patterns as well as, more generally, to raise awareness of the region’s rich history and the resources available for its study.

Each essay should be a short academic text (750 words + short bibliography) or a video (max 10 mins + bibliography) exploring the objects selected together with their histories and contexts. We attach a list of selected objects that contributors may choose from but are also open to alternatives.

Publications will be citable e-publications incorporated within a multi-media digital platform hosted by Princeton University. All are welcome to apply, including faculty, postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, undergraduate students and members of the wider community. Our Project seeks to support diversity, equity, and inclusion of researchers from all backgrounds. It will not endorse any specific political views.

Please submit preliminary proposals using the submissions form to Teresa Shawcross, Lillian Datchev, and Earnestine Qiu at medievalblackseaproject@gmail.com by December 15, 2022. This due date is for preliminary proposals and not for a completed text. If you would like to contribute but need guidance on selecting an object, feel free to reach out to us and we will work with you to identify possibilities.

The Medieval Black Sea Project

Center for Collaborative History, Princeton University

Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 25th Annual International Graduate Conference

Call for Papers for the Oxford University Byzantine Society’s 25th Annual International Graduate Conference: Passing Judgement: Distinctions, Separations, and Contradictions in Late Antiquity and Byzantium
‘Being the product of the incorporation of the fundamental structures of a society, these principles of division are common to all the agents of the society and make possible the production of a common, meaningful world, a common-sense world.’ – Pierre Bourdieu
We are pleased to announce the 25th Annual Oxford University Byzantine Society International Graduate Conference for the 24th – 25th February 2023. This important milestone marks the 25th annual conference, and we hope it serves as a fitting celebration of the society and its history. Papers are invited to approach the theme of ‘Passing Judgement: Distinctions, Separations, and Contradictions’ within the Late Antique and Byzantine world, broadly defined.
Individuals and communities in the Late Antique and Byzantine world constantly sought to set the limits on the world around them. They distinguished one thing from another, separated physical and conceptual phenomena, and in doing so amended or contradicted previous (and contemporary) distinctions and separations. This conference seeks to investigate the dynamics of how perceptions of difference functioned, as well as exploring the fallibilities of these perceptions. Over a thousand-year period, peoples’ approaches to one another, their neighbours, the built environment, and the metaphysical worlds all drew from a rich tradition of Roman, Hellenic, and Christian pasts, yet constantly interpreted through contemporary eyes. Their imperial tradition was an inheritance of Augustus and Constantine, the topography reflected that described by Homer, and their churches were those preached to by the apostles. This could convey a sense of timelessness, but the people beneath the surface were more mutable and did not always represent their historical predecessors. How then, did the interpretations of authorities and traditions to which these people belonged, develop? Individuals and communities sought the distinctions that defined their contemporary world from authorities, yet their evolution in judgement and practice was an active, ongoing process of negotiation. If an ancient ethnographer delineated a community or object a millennia ago through negative characteristics, how valid was the later Byzantine invocation of this to their own society, and how accepted?
This conference seeks to draw together papers which explore these distinctions, separations, and contradictions. These can be viewed through a diachronic or a synchronic lens, that is to say, papers might address the Byzantine and Late Antique worlds’ shifting integration and acceptance of peoples, places, or traditions which were considered (by themselves or others) at times ‘Roman’ and then subsequently otherised or even re-embraced. Otherwise, they might address a case study of how a particular individual or community sought to demarcate between in-group and out-group. Therefore, contributors might address how these boundaries changed over time, developing alongside contemporary mentalities and demands. We also seek papers which explore the models and authorities used to make such demarcations – and the ways in which these were interpreted – both within a literary and a social context (or indeed, in the intersections between the two).
In literary settings, papers might investigate the straddling of multiple identities by an individual, and the management of consequent boundaries or contradictions. Contributors might highlight a firmer yet perhaps inherently contradictory narrative presented within a work. In these distinct contexts, we encounter a presumption of distinctions that are at once generally agreed upon yet also surprisingly idiosyncratic and non-representative; and the usage of these allows us to gauge the perspectives or agenda of an author. The creation, maintenance, or rejection of distinctions are of particular importance in genres that pit one perspective against that of another such as commentaries, correspondence, encomia, ekphrasis, poetry, ethnography, geography. Moreover, distinctions and divisions are inherent when the author contends with religious controversy or discusses tendentious social or cultural phenomena; and an individual’s understanding of the divisions between in- and out-group could produce wide variations in tolerance. Most critically, we seek to investigate the recognition that distinctions assumed by one author, can differ from others and evolve over time. In the fluidity of distinguishing and separating , we often find that the things which we think define us all can so often quickly collapse when tested.
The framework of distinctions and separations (and the ambiguities present within) is widely applicable, and novel and imaginative approaches to these ideas is strongly encouraged.
The Oxford University Byzantine Society seeks papers from a broad range of themes within Late Antique and Byzantine Studies, including but not limited to:
Distinctions, separations, and contradictions in identity; e.g., social, ethnocultural, or geographical (from the perspective of the identity group itself or externally). Case studies or development across time.Ethnic and racial studies in Late Antique, Byzantine, and post-Byzantine contexts (e.g., ethnogenesis, interactionism, ethnomethodology etc.)Discussions of social class or gender within the Late Antique and Byzantine worlds.Political and (post-)imperial perspectives, particularly regarding marginalised or marginal groups or ‘subject peoples.’ Encounters with the foreign or religious ‘other,’ and how this othering takes place.The creation and development of divisions in a wide range of social or religious contexts (ingroup and outgroup, correct and incorrect practice, believer, and nonbeliever).
Distinctions marked within literary sub-genres, e.g., epistolography, hagiography etc.The use of classical or patristic authorities in Late Antique and Byzantine contexts, and how these were interpreted (with a focus on contradictions). Distinctions and contradictions in the creation of an authorial viewpoint.Religious division and union.Separations between correct and incorrect belief and practice (legislative, religious, and political). Physical and mental separations in the built environment. Social and spatial perspectives on the creation and maintenance of distinctions.Marking distinctions in time, liminal moments (historical and in contemporary academic discussion of Byzantium). The creation, maintenance, and challenging of symbolic boundaries (religious, social, cultural). Conversion as a crossing of boundaries.
Please send an abstract of no more than 250 words, with a short academic biography written in the third person, to the Oxford University Byzantine Society at byzantine.society@gmail.com by Thursday 1st December 2022. Papers should be twenty minutes in length and may be delivered in English or French. As with previous conferences, selected papers will be published in an edited volume, peer-reviewed by specialists in the field. Submissions should aim to be as close to the theme as possible in their abstract and paper, especially if they wish to be considered for inclusion in the edited volume. Nevertheless, all submissions are warmly invited. The conference will have a hybrid format, with papers delivered at the Oxford University History Faculty and livestreamed for a remote audience. Accepted speakers should expect to participate in person.

Diogenes Journal, Winter Issue 2022-2023

To whom it may concern,

On behalf of the general editors of the “Diogenes” Journal from the University of Birmingham, I would like to notify you that “Diogenes” is accepting contributions for the Winter Issue 2022-2023. For more information see the attach below.
Could you please advertise this on your website?
Many thanks in advance!
Have a lovely rest of the week!
With kindest regards,
Jacopo Marcon
PhD Researcher, ITSEE, University of Birmingham
Wissenschaft. Mittarbeiter, BBAW

Conference: Multilingual Literary Practices In A Multicultural World, From Archaic Greece To The Byzantine Empire

Conference: Multilingual Literary Practices In A Multicultural World, From Archaic Greece To The Byzantine Empire
November 14, 2023 – November 15, 2023

BELGIAN ACADEMY IN ROME
https://classics.ufl.edu/event/conference-multilingual-literary-practices-in-a-multicultural-world-from-archaic-greece-to-the-byzantine-empire/

CALL FOR PAPERS
Multilingualism in the ancient world has been of great interest to linguists and literary scholars alike. Linguists investigate borrowings and structural convergences between two or more languages and explore broader sociolinguistic questions such as regional diversi­fication and linguistic ideologies (e.g.  Adams et al. 2002; Bentein 2016; Clackson et al. 2020; Hogeterp 2018; Kaimio 1979). Literary scholars look into the socio-cultural context within which literary works were produced and received and the linguistic background that Greek-speaking and writing authors had – including the linguistic norms and stan­dards that they tried to uphold in the Greek language itself – framing it in the broader question of (the struggle for) cultural identity (Adams 2020; Andrade 2013; Bozia 2018; Goldhill 2011, Lee at al. 2014). For both research strands, Archaic Greek dialectal variety and its literary manifestations, as well as multidialectal and multilingual contacts in Classical Greek, have been of interest. Similarly, the Post-classical period (including the Hellenistic, Roman, and Late Antique periods) has been of particular relevance as a time of parti­cularly intense language contact.

Scholars working in these two research strands tend to focus on different types of sources – literary and non-literary sources such as papyri and inscriptions – and adopt different methodologies, focusing on different types of research questions. The main aim of this conference is to bring together researchers, methodologies, and sources with the objective of developing a more integrated ap­proach toward multi­lingual practices in various ways:

  • by developing a diachronic approach to the study of Greek and its contact languages, from the Archaic to the Byzantine period,
  • by including types of sources traditionally neglected, such as translations and bilingual metalinguistic sources like grammars & dictionaries,
  • by situating multilingual literature in its socio-cultural context, looking at people with multilingual competencies, the intellectual communities in which they operated, and the factors driving particular linguistic and literary choices,
  • by integrating new theoretical approaches, such as cognitive and socio-pragmatic ones, to create a framework for the study of multilingualism in the ancient Greek world.
  • The general goal of the conference is to understand better what the linguistic repertoire of multilingual speakers and writers looked like, how and why writers brought together features (ranging from specific linguistic patterns to larger and more abstract cultural forms such as genres) from different cultural traditions, and what the intended effect was, or, vice versa, why they consciously resisted them. Importantly, under ‘multilingual competencies,’ we also understand the existence of different linguistic registers and dialects inside a single language. Finally, the conference focuses on literary sources, but it is also interested in overlaps with genres that have traditionally been defined as ‘non-literary,’ a distinction that recent research has problematized (e.g., Fournet 2013).

TOPICS MAY INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO THE FOLLOWING:

  • Systematic studies of multilingualism in the ancient Greek and Byzantine worlds:
    • Cognitive and socio-pragmatic approaches to ancient Greek, its evolution, and contact languages
    • (Re)-definitions and applications of concepts of linguistics and sociolinguistics on Greek linguistic competencies
  • Consideration of different forms of multilingualism (translations, “errors” in translations, lexica, etc.)
  • Studies of linguistic varieties in different literary genres (such as dialectal varieties) as forms of multilingualism
  • Analysis of multilingual lexica/grammars
  • Studies of private writings and others meant for public consumption to determine levels of multilingualism
  • Considerations of multilingualism in literature in conjunction with multiculturalism (lexical and social variations, multilingual literary practices alongside multicultural ones)
  • Insights into the reception of ancient texts through translations.

A thematic issue with selected contributions will be published by The Journal of Literary Multilingualism. Leiden: Brill.

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS:
JAMES CLACKSON, University of Cambridge
MARK JANSE, Ghent University
ARIETTA PAPACONSTANTINOU, University of Reading

Interested scholars are invited to submit proposals (500 words max) by December 15th, 2022 to Eleni Bozia (bozia@ufl.edu), Klaas Bentein (Klaas.Bentein@UGent.be), and Chiara Monaco (Chiara.Monaco@UGent.be).

REFERENCES
Adams, J. N., Mark Janse, and Simon Swain. 2002. Bilingualism in Ancient Society: Language Contact and the Written Text. Oxford ; New York: Oxford University Press.

Adams, Sean. 2020. Greek Genres and Jewish Authors. Negotiating Literary Culture in the Greco-Roman Era. Baylor University Press.

Andrade, Nathanael J. 2013. Syrian Identity in the Greco-Roman World. Greek Culture in the Roman World. New York: Cambridge University Press.

Bentein, Klaas. 2016. Verbal Periphrasis in Ancient Greek: Have- and Be-Constructions. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Bozia, Eleni. 2018. “Immigration as acculturation: voluntary displacement in the Roman Empire.” In D. Arroyo (ed.) Displacement in language, Literature and Culture – 2016 CMLL Symposium, Selected Proceedings. Benalmádena, Málaga, Spain. 49-82.

Clackson, J., Patrick James, Katherine McDonald, Livia Tagliapetra, and Nicholas Zair. (eds.) 2020. Migration, Mobility, and Language Contact in and around the Ancient Mediterranean. Cambridge University Press.

Fournet, Jean-Luc. 2013. “Culture Grecque et Document Dans l’Égypte de l’Antiquité Tardive.” Journal of Juristic Papyrology 43: 135–62.

Goldhill, Simon. 2011. Being Greek under Rome. Cambridge, GBR: Cambridge University Press.

Hogeterp, Albert L. A. 2018. Semitisms in Luke’s Greek: A Descriptive Analysis of Lexical and Syntactical Domains of Semitic Language Influence in Luke’s Gospel. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen Zum Neuen Testament 401. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck.

Kaimio, Jorma. 1979. “The Romans and the Greek Language.” Commentationes Humanarum Litterarum 64: 1–379.

Lee, B.T., Ellen Finkelpearl, and Luca Graverini (eds.) 2014. Apuleius and Africa. Routledge.

ORGANIZING COMMITTEE:
ELENI BOZIA, University of Florida
KLAAS BENTEIN, Ghent University
CHIARA MONACO, Ghent University

CFP: Ninth North American Syriac Symposium — Yale, June 11-14, 2023

Call for Papers: The Ninth North American Syriac Symposium
“Syriac at the Center”

June 11-14, 2023
Yale University

New Haven, Connecticut

Held every four years since 1991, the North American Syriac Symposium brings together scholars and students for exchange and discussion on a wide variety of topics related to the language, literature, and cultural history of Syriac Christianity, extending chronologically from the first centuries CE to the present day and geographically from Syriac Christianity’s homeland in the Middle East to South India, China, and the worldwide diaspora.

In 2023, the Ninth North American Syriac Symposium will be held in person at Yale University, in New Haven, Connecticut, June 11 to June 14. Most of the event will be hosted at the Yale Divinity School, with the opportunity to visit the Dura-Europos exhibit at the Yale University Art Gallery and to see an exhibition of Syriac manuscripts from the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.

The theme of this Symposium is “Syriac at the Center.” Syriac has often been treated as an auxiliary language in the modern humanities, an adjunct tool to scholarship on Early Christianity, Late Antiquity, early Islam, the histories of theology and of science, and other areas of inquiry. It is an “extra language” in humanistic curricula. This conference welcomes papers on topics that treat Syriac as central, not peripheral, to scholarly investigation. How do our research subjects look when we stand with Syriac and regard other traditions and areas as peripheral?

Positions of center and periphery are matters of perspective, easily leading to one-sided views. We therefore encourage papers on this theme that rise above mere encomia to the importance of the Syriac traditions, but go further, showing how centering Syriac reveals new solutions to old problems, as well as new problems and areas of inquiry, and complicates current scholarly assumptions.

We welcome particularly papers addressing

  • Syriac and translation activity
  • Syriac manuscripts, documents, and epigraphy
  • Syriac geographical thought
  • Social and economic history using Syriac sources
  • Bodily and ritual practices
  • Christological considerations
  • Development of canon law
  • Relations with the religious “other” from the Syriac Christian perspective
  • Philoxenus of Mabbug on the sesquimillennial anniversary of his death

Any investigation into the Syriac traditions has the potential to contribute to the main theme of the symposium. We therefore also welcome generally presentations by scholars on their current research, even if they do not directly address the symposium’s theme.

Please submit a title and abstract of proposed communication (150–200 words), to https://nass23.yale.edu by January 2, 2023. Accepted speakers will be notified in February 2023.

For inquiries concerning the symposium, please do not hesitate to reach out to nass23yale@gmail.com.

The organizers, 

Jimmy Daccache, Maria Doerfler, Kevin van Bladel

NB: This symposium coincides with the 6th Yale Liturgy Conference, June 12-15, 2023, held at the Maurice R. Greenberg Conference Center, about five minutes’ walk from the Yale Divinity School. We expect to host a joint panel between both events and welcome proposals for contributions.

© 2023 Byzantine Studies Association of North America, Inc. (BSANA) . All Rights Reserved.