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May 12-14, 2006

CEU Graduate Conference in the Humanities and Social Studies

The First Annual CEU Graduate Conference is dedicated to an interdisciplinary approach to cultural and political discourses, social groups, and institutional/individual agency in relation to the concepts of ‘power,’ ‘state,’ and ‘society.’ The theme of the conference is broadly designed in order to address the various fields of study from the humanities, as well as social sciences.

This year’s applicants are encouraged to address the concepts of ‘power,’ ‘state,’ and ‘society’ by concentrating on the interplay of the political and cultural discourses, the social groups, and individual, economic and bureaucratic agency. Both case studies and comparative approaches are welcomed.

Panels may be organized with the following possible themes (please, note that the list is open to change):

• Comparative approaches to the past and/or society: diffusion and reception of ideas e.g. the discourse of nationalism;
• Technologies of ruling: frameworks of thinking, forms of governamentality, institutions for policing and/or isolation;

• State, church and society;
• Memory and history: the role of representations and interpretations;
• Entangled histories: identities, sites of memory, social change;
• Society and economy: diffusion and reception of goods (e.g. merchant histories);
• Gender and citizenship;

5-7 March, 2006

Religion and State Formation -- Comparative Perspectives from Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages

CEU - Popper Room

In this context, it is understood that the theme "religion and state formation" can usefully be taken to intend both the role of religion in the formative stage of the establishment of a state, and its role in constituting an element -- symbolic, social, legislative, ideological, institutional, separately or together in a variety of combinations -- integral to this state and its apparatuses. It is suggested that in this particular workshop priority be given to the former sense.

1. In terms of geographical and temporal parameters, we have before us in the vista of areas surrounding Romano-Byzantine Europe and the Near East a number of barbarian peoples engaged more or less simultaneously in the adoption of monotheistic religions and the foundation of states: Franks, Goths, Lombards, Nordic peoples, Arabs, Anglo-Saxons, Magyars, Bulgars, Rus and others. This alone justifies the inclusion of Late antiquity and the Middle ages in one compass, given that these events stretched over the period of half a millennium. Many of the polities that emerged recapitulated and in the case of the Near East and South-Eastern Europe calqued notions of state, oecumenism and royalty associated with late Romanity, Byzantium, and the Sassanians. It would be interesting to examine in this purview the consequences of another instance of Völkerwanderung which falls within the temporal and geographical parameters indicated, namely, that of the Turkic peoples -- the Seljuqs and, ultimately, the Ottomans, who were in many ways to repeat the Byzantine state, and to "translate" it.

2. It would be of particular interest for considering the periodisation of medieval history to compare and contrast the role of religion in the formation and consolidation of polities that emerged without the political boundaries of late Romanity (associated with Roman Catholicism) and those that emerged within (post-Byzantine Orthodox polities, the Caliphate). This might usefully be undertaken by examining quite deliberately the geo-political and symbolic elements contained in the notion of translatio imperii, and the institutional, political, ethnogenetic and symbolic connection between state and religion. Correlatively, it would be important to examine real as distinct from symbolic continuities: in terms of royal sacrality, state administration, the tribal as related to the institutional armature of the state, the socio-political and symbolic configuration of the clericy in relation to the gladius, and related matters.

3. In thematic terms, the question of conversion, most saliently the relationship between the conversion to monotheistic faiths of the ruling clan and conversion overall seems to be of special pertinence: socio-political imperatives, geopolitical imperatives (the case of Arianism most especially), cultic centralisation, rudimentary theological elaboration (the significance of Arianism should here be taken into account), the management and "translation" of Pagan sacred spaces, genealogies and beliefs, and areas of institutional, social and cultic eradication, resistance and cooptation.

4. All this, most particularly matters mentioned in the previous paragraph, should be instrumental in helping us understand precisely what might be meant by "christianisation" and "islamisation", and in giving proper consideration to the the question of conversion.

November 14-18, 2005

Bologna Process and Its Consequences for Curriculum Development in Historical Studies


March 30 - April 2, 2005

Uses and Abuses of the Middle Ages: 19th-21st Century


Abstracts or texts are available in alphabetical order by clicking on "abstracts" or by clicking on to highlited titles.

Die Tagung wurde ermöglicht durch die Unterstützung von:
The conference has been supported by:
Ce colloque a pu être organisé grâce à l’aimable soutien de:

Central European University, Budapest

Fritz-Thyssen-Stiftung, Köln

Historisches Seminar, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität, Heidelberg

Institut zur Interdisziplinären Erforschung des Mittelalters und seines Nachwirkens, Paderborn

La Mission Historique Française en Allemagne de Göttingen

Magyar Tudományos Akadémia, Budapest

Pasts Inc., Center for Historical Research, Budapest

The conference is combined with a CRC one week course.

Teilnahmegebühr/Conference fee: € 30.00
(Studenten/students € 15.00)
Droits d’inscription, 30 euros et 15 euros pour les étudiants

20-21 November, 2004

Founding Conference of the Center for Hellenic Traditions (CHT)

CEU, Monument Building, Senate Room

14-16 October, 2004

Medieval and Early Modern Queens and Queenship: Questions of Income and Patronage

CEU, Monument Building, Gellner Room

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