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Much Ado About Early Modern Emotions (and Other CFPs) | The Scrivener

By September 27, 2015 One Comment

Welcome to The Scrivener. It’s Lindsay here this week with the latest in early modern scholarship. There’s a noteworthy number of CFPs circulating at the moment on topics relating to affect studies and/or emotions in history. Up this week, there’s also a notice about an upcoming doctoral workshop at the V&A and reminders about fellowships currently being advertised by the Herzog August Bibliothek and the Malone Society. Read on for full details!

Calls for Papers

The recent critical interest in the role of material culture in religion has been paralleled by the attention in emotions studies to the exploration of affective relationships between beings and things, and the role of the material in eliciting emotional responses. Yet the interplay between materiality and emotions in religion has received less attention, especially within an historical context. A symposium on ‘Religious Materiality and Emotion’ will integrate these strands of research by exploring the ways in which the material stimulated, shaped and informed the emotional dimensions of religion. Abstracts are invited for papers that address the relationship between religion, materiality and emotion within a European context between 1200 and the present day. This event will take place in Adelaide, Australia from 17-18 February 2016, and abstracts should be submitted by 31 October 2015. The full call is online here.

‘Emotions: Movement, Cultural Contact and Exchange, 1100-1800’ will take place from 30 June-2 July 2016 at Freie Universität Berlin in Germany. This conference will draw on a broad range of disciplinary and cross-disciplinary expertise in addressing the history of emotions in relation to cross-cultural movement, exchange, contact and changing connections in the later medieval and early modern periods. The conference thus brings together two major areas in contemporary humanities: the study of how emotions were understood, expressed and performed in pre-modern contexts, both by individuals and within larger groups and communities; and the study of pre-modern cultural movements, contacts, exchanges and understandings, within Europe and between non-Europeans and Europeans. More details can be found here, and proposals are due by 31 October 2015.

The history of moving minds and moved minds involves conversions and transformations of many forms, in technology and religion and natural philosophy, in rituals and skills and forms of reasoning, in art and music and language and identity. Is there a field of ‘cognitive history’ or ‘historical cognitive science’? Is there a ‘cognitive turn’ in cultural history and literary theory? A conference on ‘Moving Minds: Converting Cognition and Emotion in History’ will take place at Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia from 2-4 March 2016. The primary historical focus of the conference is roughly 1100-1800, but the organizers will also consider historical, comparative, or theoretical papers addressing earlier or later periods. Abstracts for for papers and symposia are due by 30 October 2015, and the full call can be found here.

In the contemporary Western world, religion and medicine are increasingly separated, but through much of history they have been closely interrelated. 30 October 2015 is the abstract submission deadline for ‘Religion and Medicine: Healing the Body and Soul from the Middle Ages to the Modern Day’. The conference focus will be primarily historical, and contributions are welcmed that take an interdisciplinary approach to this topic. The event will be held at Birkbeck, University of London from15-16 July 2016, and full details can be found here.

During the early modern period, women were involved in many debates that tangled together metaphysics, religion and science. The women included figures such as Margaret Cavendish, Emilie Du Châtelet, Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia, and Damaris Cudworth Masham. From 21-23 March 2016, a conference on ‘Early Modern Women on Metaphysics, Religion and Science’ will take place at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. The deadline for abstract submission is 20 October 2015, and more information can be found here.

8 November 2015 is the deadline to submit a paper proposal for ‘The Senses in Medieval and Renaissance Europe: Sight and Visual Perception’. This conference, the first of a planned series devoted to the five senses, is scheduled to take place in Dublin, Ireland from 11-12 March 2016. It aims to provide an international and interdisciplinary forum for researchers with an interest in the history of the senses in the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Sight has been chosen as the first topic for investigation as it was considered the primary sense and was treated as an abstract philosophical and religious concept in many medieval texts. But the study of sight can also provide insights into various aspects of medieval society: ‘eye-witness’ descriptions; sight impairment and the care of the blind; deprivation of sight as punishment or revenge; the development of spectacles and other optical aids; ideas about colours and their significance; ‘second sight’ as manifested in visions and apparitions; the concept of ‘the gaze’ in visual arts. The full call can be found here.

Writers the world over have often accompanied their texts with a variety of annotations, marginal glosses, rubrications, and explicatory or narrative prose in an effort to direct and control the reception of their own works. Such self-exegetical devices do not merely serve as an external apparatus but effectively interact with the primary text by introducing a distinctive meta-literary dimension which, in turn, reveals complex dynamics affecting the very notions of authorship and readership. A conference entitled ‘Self-Commentary in Early Modern European Literature’ will take place at Durham University, UK from 26-27 February 2016. Proposals are invited for papers on any aspect of self-commentary and self-exegesis in early modern literature, and 15 October 2015 is the abstract submission deadline. More information can be found here.

‘Opening Up Early Modern Studies: Taking Digital Humanities Beyond University’ is a UK-based project that will consist of three workshops exploring the relationship between the teaching and the display of the early modern studies and the use of digital resources. Each workshop focuses on a different topic: 1) higher education (University of Kent, 14 November 2015); 2) secondary schools (University of East Anglia, 28 November 2015); and 3) cultural institutions concerned with the dissemination of knowledge about the early modern age (University of Essex, 12 December 2015). Proposals from prospective participants are due by 30 September 2015. You can find more about these three individual workshops here, here and here.

The next PCA/ACA (Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association) conference will be held in Seattle, Washington from 21-25 March 2016. 1 October 2015 is the deadline to submit a proposal. ‘Shakespeare on Film & Television’ is one of the conference’s dedicated subject areas, and you can find full details about submitting a relevant paper proposal here.

Workshop for Junior Scholars

Hosted by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, ‘On Matter of Books and Records: Forms, Substance, Forgeries, and Meanings beyond the Lines’ is an international and interdisciplinary workshop on the materiality of books and documents from antiquity to the modern era. This workshop, scheduled for 23 November 2015, is aimed at junior scholars interested in the material culture of the written word, especially PhD students and postdoctoral researchers. Papers will range chronologically and geographically, providing both methodological overviews and more specific case studies. Registration must be completed prior to 15 November 2015. A limited number of travel bursaries will be allocated on the basis of merit by 15 October 2015. Full details can be found here.


The German Herzog August Bibliothek functions as one of Europe’s most important research libraries. Its unique rare book and manuscript holdings and special collections, such as print, painting and historical map collections, are famous all around the world. Fellowship programmes are open to doctoral candidates from Germany and abroad and from all disciplines. Applicants may apply for a fellowship of between two and ten months. The library is also currently calling for applications for a special fellowship of two months in the field of the history of music and a six month fellowship in digital humanities.1 October 2015 is the application deadline for the two former  fellowships, and 31 October 2015 is the deadline for the latter. Further particulars can be found here.

The Malone Society invites applications from scholars engaged in research on the editing and publication of early English drama for fellowships and research grants. The Society hopes to make major awards up to £1,000 and minor awards up to the same total, both for immediate research needs, such as for microfilms or travelling expenses, and for longer-term support, for example to assist with prolonged visits to libraries and archives. The Society is willing to entertain applications for grants in cases in where theatrical practice might directly inform editorial work or other projects which the Society supports. The Society may also be willing to consider applications for grants for the keyboarding of dramatic texts and records. 30 October 2015 is the deadline for submission of applications, and full details can be found here.


Author Lindsay

Lindsay Ann Reid is a regular contributor to The Scrivener and Early Modern and Open Access. She holds a PhD from the University of Toronto and is a Lecturer in English at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

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