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  • Call for papers - Religion

    Iconotrop

    Symbolic and Material Changes to Cult Images in the Classical and Medieval Ages

    Iconotropy is a Greek word which literally means “image turning.” William J. Hamblin (2007) defines the term as “the accidental or deliberate misinterpretation by one culture of the images or myths of another one, especially so as to bring them into accord with those of the first culture.” In fact, iconotropy is commonly the result of the way cultures have dealt with images from foreign or earlier cultures. Numerous accounts from classical antiquity and the Middle Ages detail how cult images were involved in such processes of misinterpretation, both symbolically and materially. Pagan cultures for example deliberately misrepresented ancient ritual icons and incorporated new meanings to the mythical substratum, thus modifying the myth’s original meanings and bringing about a profound change to existing religious paradigms. Iconotropy is a fundamental concept in religious history, particularly of contexts in which religious changes, often turbulent, took place. At the same time, the iconotropic process of appropriating cult images brought with it changes in the materiality of those images...The conference hopes to generate new research questions and creative synergies by initiating conversation and the exchange of ideas among scholars in the arts and humanities.

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  • Call for papers - History

    Ancient Physiologus and its medieval transmission

    Special issue of "RursuSpicae" (#12)

    Any proposal concerning one of the “recensions” of the Physiologus (in Greek as well as in the other ancient or medieval languages of diffusion – Latin, Armenian, Georgian, Arabic, Slavonic, Romanian ...) is welcome. The papers (in any European language) may relate to the medieval tradition and the avatars of this text / genre, and relate to philological, literary, cultural, naturalist, or iconographic aspects.

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  • Rome

    Call for papers - History

    Meanings of rituals

    Incense and religion in ancient societies

    Although several studies have drawn attention to the role of incense as an ingredient in ritual and a means of communication between men and gods, there remains no comprehensive examination of the practical functions and cultural semantics of incense in the ancient world, whether as a purifying agent, a performative sign of a transcendent world, an olfactory signal to summon the deity, a placatory libation, or food for the gods. Moreover, recent archaeological research has provided evidence (alongside literary, epigraphic and iconographic evidence) that the physical origins and chemical constituents of incense are complex and diverse, as are their properties : resins, vegetable gums, spices, and a welter of aromatic products that could be exhibited and burned before ancient eyes and noses. These were components of a multi-sensory religious experience in which music, colourful costumes, lavish banquets and tactile encounters defined the ritualsensibilities of the community.

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  • Kalamazoo

    Call for papers - Representation

    Body and Soul in Medieval Visual Culture

    52nd International Congress on Medieval Studies

    This session seeks papers that explore the range of ways in which medieval artists responded to the anthropological duality of body and soul in the visual arts of the Byzantine and Western medieval worlds.

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  • Paris

    Study days - History

    Meta-figurative thought - Setting images in Antiquity and the Middle Ages

    La question de la « pensée méta-figurative » explore la capacité réflexive des objets visuels : elle se fonde d’abord sur le repérage de la multiplicité des procédés d’enchâssements à l’œuvre dans les images, puis sur leur interprétation dans ce qu’ils révèlent à la fois du processus de création chez l’artiste, du pouvoir et de l’efficacité qu’ils activent dans les œuvres elles-mêmes, suivant une démarche soucieuse de rendre compte tout à la fois des enjeux esthétiques, historiques et anthropologiques dont elles sont porteuses.

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  • Brno

    Study days - Middle Ages

    The Face of the Dead and the Early Christian World

    The theme chosen for this meeting is the study of funerary images in the transition between late antiquity and the Middle Ages. The central question will a reflection on the function of the funerary images in a broad sense, but also their impact on the early christian world. The choice of the chronological time also shows the second intention of the colloquium: this is an attempt to explain why the ancient funerary tradition of the image will eventually disappear, replaced by other figures of the representative functions. Through various media - from the mosaic and painting, through sculpture and ending with gilded glasses - there will be presented one of the nodal representation of the self: the human face on the border between life and death.

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  • Paris

    Conference, symposium - Middle Ages

    Monks and Demons

    Autobiography and Individuality in the High Middle Ages

    Au Xe siècle, commence une grande époque d’historiographie et d’hagiographie, en Europe centrale et occidentale, avec souvent quelques touches autobiographiques. La grande œuvre est celle d’Otloh de Saint-Emmeram, de laquelle on a rapproché souvent les Monodies de Guibert de Nogent. Il paraît intéressant aujourd’hui de réunir des médiévistes pour faire le point sur ces auteurs et sur les clercs et moines qui, entre le milieu du Xe et le début du XIIIe siècle, esquissent une étude d’eux-mêmes en évoquant leur individualité ou leurs démons, soit dans un essai d’autobiographie à résonance augustinienne, soit lorsqu’une chronique ou une vie de saint leur en fournit l’occasion.

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