New publication: Art and Material Culture in the Byzantine and Islamic Worlds, edited by Evanthia Baboula and Lesley Jessop (Brill)

From her interests in late antique silver stamps to the abandoned churches of medieval Lebanon, the relationship of image and word in Islamic art, and the decoration of contemporary buses and trucks in Pakistan, Erica Cruikshank Dodd’s interests have been multi-faceted. Dedicated to Dr. Cruikshank Dodd, Art and Material Culture in the Byzantine and Islamic Worlds offers new perspectives on the Christian and Muslim communities of the east Mediterranean from medieval to contemporary times. The contributors examine how people from diverse religious backgrounds adapted to their changing political landscapes and show that artistic patronage, consumption, and practices are interwoven with constructed narratives. The essays consider material and textual evidence for painted media, architecture, and the creative process in Byzantium, Crusader-era polities, the Ottoman empire, and the modern Middle East, thus demonstrating the importance of the past in understanding the present.

Survey of Interest for Graduate Students

The Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture at Hellenic College Holy Cross is working with BSANA to organize virtual digital humanities training for graduate students in Byzantine studies (and closely allied fields) during the 2021—2022 academic year. These sessions will be open to students enrolled in North American graduate programs. We are asking for your help in planning opportunities that best serve your needs. We have put together a survey to gather data about the research you are doing, the kinds of tools that you anticipate using in your work or would like to learn more about, and what training you have already received. The data you provide will inform the training offered and help us to tailor the training opportunities. The more information you provide the better. Please complete the survey by May 20, 2021.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Art History, Kenyon College

Kenyon College, a highly selective, nationally ranked liberal arts college in central Ohio, invites applications for a Visiting Professor in Art History at the rank of Assistant Professor beginning in July 2021. All applications received by May 3 will be given full consideration.

Assistant Professor of Medieval Studies at Central European University (Vienna)

The Department of Medieval Studies at Central European University (Vienna) invites applications for the position of Assistant Professor of Medieval Studies. The successful candidate will be an outstanding teacher and researcher in the field of Medieval Studies and Cultural Heritage Studies, with the ability to teach subjects and supervise theses at the BA, MA and PhD levels in a broad chronological range from ca. 800 to 1500. Possible research foci of the applicant may include (but are not restricted to) cultural history and the interaction between Western and Central Europe; philology; textual and literary heritage. The department offers an initial contract for 6 years. The contract is renewable and can be turned into a permanent contract after a positive assessment. The ideal starting date is 1 August 2021. The deadline for applications is 20 May 2021.

Junior Professor of Christian Archaeology and Byzantine Art History

The Institute of Art History and Music Science at the Faculty of Historical and Cultural Studies at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) invites applications for the position of Junior Professor of Christian Archaeology and Byzantine Art History as part of a joint appointment with Römisch Germanisches Zentralmuseum (RGZM). Application deadline: May 9, 2021.

Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar – Summer 2021

Oxford Byzantine Graduate Seminar – Summer 2021
Mondays 12.30 BST, via Zoom. To register, please contact the organiser at james.cogbill@worc.ox.ac.uk

Monday 26th April. Katherine Krauss (Somerville College, Oxford), Rereading the ‘Canon’ in Latin Late Antiquity: Exemplarity and Allusion in Macrobius’ Saturnalia

Monday 3rd May. Alessandro Carabia (University of Birmingham), Defining the ‘Byzantine Variable’ in Early Byzantine Italy: The Case of Liguria (500-700 CE)

Monday 10th May. Cristina Cocola (Universiteit Gent & Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven), Feeling Repentance in Byzantium: A Study on the Literary Sources of Katanyktic Poetry

Monday 17th May. Ben Kybett (Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge), Themistius and the Muses: Religion, Rhetoric, and Classical Statuary in Fourth-Century Constantinople

Monday 24th May. Grace Stafford (Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz), Between the Living and the Dead: Use, Reuse, and Imitation of Painted Portraits in Late Antiquity

Monday 31st May. Josh Hitt (St. Hilda’s College, Oxford), Ageing, Rejuvenation and Patronage in Twelfth-Century Byzantium

Monday 7th June. Constanța Burlacu (Merton College, Oxford), Monastic Presence and Book Circulation in the Lands North of the Danube (15th-16th Centuries)

Monday 14th June. Kyriakos Fragkoulis (University of Birmingham), (Re)contextualising a Late Antique City through the Ceramic Record: The Case of Dion in Macedonia (Pieria, Greece)

Call for Sessions: Mary Jaharis Center Sponsored Panel, 57th International Congress on Medieval Studies

To encourage the integration of Byzantine studies within the scholarly community and medieval studies in particular, the Mary Jaharis Center for Byzantine Art and Culture seeks proposals for a Mary Jaharis Center sponsored session at the 57th International Congress on Medieval Studies, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, May 9–14, 2022. We invite session proposals on any topic relevant to Byzantine studies. Session proposals must be submitted through the Mary Jaharis Center website. The deadline for submission is May 18, 2021.

“On Being Conquered in Byzantium” Virtual Symposium

Date: April 16-17, 2021 at 9am EDT

The famous adage that history is written by the victors may have become a truism, but the voices of conquered people have never been fully silenced—rather, we may not have been interested in hearing them. All too often, historiography (by no means limited to Byzantine studies) has focused on great-man histories, impersonal studies of societies, or the “longue durée,” all modes that diminish the importance of subjective individual experiences of people who were not great or who were not men.

This symposium therefore aims to refocus the collective scholarly gaze of Byzantinists away from the victors in war and toward the vanquished; away from heroes and rulers and toward victims and casualties; away from the political, economic, historical, and social causes of war and toward the personal and subjective experience of it; away from the insistence of dominant voices and toward the recuperation of marginalized ones.

Bringing together twelve specialists in literature, history, art history, and contemporary cultural theory, this symposium seeks to better understand both how Byzantines themselves understood being conquered and, as importantly, what being conquered in Byzantium can mean for us now.

Women in Sacred Chant: Past and Present

A panel discussion celebrating the vocal ensemble Cappella Romana’s release of Hymns of Kassianí, a recording of newly edited medieval Byzantine chants by the 9th-century composer and poet Kassía. Moderated by Professor Susan Ashbrook Harvey (Brown) and introduced by Professor Alexander Lingas (City and Cappella Romana). Panelists will explore the role of women — as composers and as performers — in sacred Western and Eastern chant from ancient times to the present day, including music by Kassianí (Kassía) and Hildegard of Bingen. This is a history often marginalized or even disregarded in general histories of Christianity, yet it has been — and continues to be — important to the continuing vitality of sacred music as an art form and as a crucial mode of religious expression. Tuesday, 13 April 2021: 18.00–19.30 BST via Zoom.

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