Author Archives

Registration and Programme for the ‘Epistemology of Ancient Embryology’ Conference

Received from Dr. Nathasja Roggo-van Luijn (Johannes Gutenberg- Universität Mainz) Epistemology of Ancient Embryology Conference Dates: 1st – 3rd July 2024 Location: Department of Classics, University of Cambridge/and online Event website Overview This conference will explore the various epistemological practices and strategies used in ancient Graeco-Roman embryology. An embryo can turn into a fully-fledged human being, but it is unclear how exactly that happens, as the inner workings of a pregnant female body cannot directly be observed. What methods did ancient thinkers use to circumvent this problem and nevertheless say something about the formation of embryos? What strategies did they employ to come up with theories, corroborate general principles, adapt theories from predecessors, and communicate their own theories to their audiences? Strategies which were employed include dissection, vivisection, empirical observation of the pregnant female body, studying miscarriages, talking to women and midwives, comparisons with artefacts or plants, inferences from the pregnancy of animals, and connecting it to cosmological views by principle of ‘microcosm-macrocosm’. The conference will focus on the Graeco-Roman world, inviting experts on a range of thinkers (the ‘Presocratics’, the Hippocratic Corpus, Aristotle, Hellenistic doctors, the Stoics, Galen, Middle- and Neoplatonism), but will also include a comparative panel on […]

RHS Masters’ Scholarships

Via the Royal Historical Society View the original post on the Royal Historical Society Website RHS Masters’ Scholarships provide financial support to students from groups currently underrepresented in academic History. Each Scholarship is worth £5,000. The next round of applications, for students studying for a Masters’ degree in History from September 2024 is now open. Further information on how to apply are available below. Applications may be made via the Society’s applications. This year the Society seeks to award eight scholarships to students who will begin a Masters’ degree in History (full or part-time) at a UK university from the start of the next academic year. The Society thanks the Past & Present Society and the Scouloudi Foundation for their generous support of this year’s awards. The programme, established in 2022, seeks to actively address underrepresentation within the discipline, and enable Black and Asian students, along with those of other minorities, to consider academic research in History. By supporting Masters’ students the programme focuses on a key early stage in the academic training of future researchers. With these Scholarships, we seek to support students who are without the financial means to study for a Masters’ in History. By doing so, we hope to improve the […]

Programme and Registration for the “Cosmic Magic: Astronomy, Astrology and Graeco-Egyptian Cultural Interactions” workshop

Received from Dr. Peter Agócs (University College London) The UCL Department of Greek and Latin, the Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology at the University of Birmingham, Palladion/Graecoaegyptiaca and the Ourania Network are organising a conference entitled ‘Cosmic Magic. Astronomy, Astrology and Graeco-Aegyptian Cultural Interactions’. For the programme, please see here. The conference, which is fully hybrid, will take place on June 3rd and 4th, 2024 in the UCL Institute of Advanced Studies’ G11 Common Ground Seminar Room (UCL Wilkins Building, South Wing), and on Zoom. Anyone interested is cordially invited. If you plan to attend, please register via the Eventbrite page. If you wish to attend in person, please write an email to Any questions you may have can also be addressed to this email. The society of Egypt in the Hellenistic and Roman periods was a unique and fascinating melting-pot of Egyptian, Near Eastern and Greek influences. The astronomy and astrology of the period is an exciting area in which to study this rich cultural hybridity. Cosmology was an area where science, religion and magic met and cross-fertilized in a culture where the boundaries between these areas were differently defined. This international project, conceived and run […]

Programme and Registration for Communication and Exchange in the Early Modern c. 1500-1850

Received from Joey Crozier (Aberystwyth University) Key Details Communication and Exchange in the Early Modern c. 1500-1850 Date: 30th-31st May 2024 Location: Aberystwyth (Main Hall, International Politics Building, Main Campus, University of Aberystwyth) Programme Event Poster Registration (free) Past & Present is pleased to support this event and supports other events like it. Applications for event funding are welcomed from scholars working in the field of historical studies at all stages in their careers.

The Present in the Past: Reflections on Veiling Practices and Practicing History

by Grace Stafford (University of Vienna) I first became interested in practices of veiling and head-covering during my PhD, when I stumbled across one of the single most beautiful portraits to survive from antiquity (in my opinion at least!). It is a marble bust of a woman, rendered with such sensitivity and plasticity that seems almost impossible for stone. She gazes just past us with heavily lidded eyes, her face calm, and her voluminous hairstyle enveloped by a delicate cover that creases and bunches with spectacular realism. She was made around 400 CE, probably somewhere near the east Roman capital of Constantinople, and represents a woman from a prominent family, or at least one rich enough to have a portrait like this carved. She is truly a triumph of late antique artistry, sitting right at the end of a 1000-year tradition of ancient portrait sculpture. What really attracted my attention though, was the way in which she was described in the catalogue of Roman portraits in which I found her. After a long and detailed description typical of such books, the final paragraph turned to the issue of her covered hair. It stated directly that this garment was not simply […]

Reflections upon the ‘Popular Knowledge of the Law in Early Modernity’ workshop

by Dr. Laura Flannigan (St. John’s, University of Oxford) The early modern period witnessed unprecedented levels of litigation. Indeed, the size of surviving archive of court rolls, pleadings, and depositions marks out the contours of a ‘legal revolution’ in the centuries up to c.1600, observable across much of the Western world. This trend, scholars have assumed, was preconditioned by population recovery following the Black Death, by rising literacy and document ownership, and by the centralisation of judicial systems under various monarchical regimes. Frequent litigation would seem to imply widespread knowledge of its norms and procedures among litigants – enough to drive them to seek out law courts and legal authorities more regularly. But what did (and what could) this knowledge consist of, how was it acquired and disseminated, who by, and how coherently or accurately? These were some of the questions that formed the genesis of this one-day workshop on ‘Popular Knowledge of the Law in Early Modernity’ at St John’s College, Oxford, with contributors exploring English and trans-Atlantic contexts for answers. One distinction that emerged early in the day’s discussions was that between the knowledge of litigants and that of the lawyers who advised them. The former is typically […]

Registration Opens for “Histories of Scottish Politics in the Age of Union, c.1700-1945”

Received from Dr. Naomi Lloyd-Jones (Durham University) Dates: 23rd – 24th July 2024 Times: 09:00-17:00 Location: Collingwood College Penthouse Conference Suite, Durham University and online Download Programme Conference Event Listing on the Durham University Website Join us for two days of stimulating discussion about the place of politics and the meaning of the political in modern Scotland, a period of massive political, constitutional, economic, environmental, religious and social change in Scotland, the UK and the empire. The conference features 40 paper presentations, a keynote on ‘Where did the nineteenth century go?’ and a roundtable on ‘The future of Scottish political history?’. Registration is now open. The conference is free to attend, and hybrid. Registration is currently open and will close for in-person attendance on 4 July and for online attendance on 18 July. We are also holding pre-conference workshop on publishing in academic journals, in conjunction with Edinburgh University Press (taking place 14:30-16:00 on 22nd July 2024, also at Durham University). It is aimed at PGRs and ECRs, but all are welcome. It is free and hybrid; register on the via the booking website by 18 July. Registration (free) This event is supported by: Lverhulme Trust, Centre for Nineteenth Century Studies, The History of Parliament […]

Call for Participants: Colonies, Camps and Captive Spaces of Empire Workshop

Received from Dr. Craig Whittall Key Details Colonies, Camps and Captive Spaces of Empire Workshop Date: 2nd July 2024 Location: London Call for Participants pdf. Event Overview This interdisciplinary workshop brings together two convergent, but not yet connected, fields of colonial history – historical practices of domestic and agricultural labour ‘colonies’, which embodied many of the hallmarks of colonialism, and the coercive and captive spaces of overseas empires in which forms of colonial power were put into direct material practice, namely colonial concentration camps, penal colonies and reformatory/residential schools. These two highly interdisciplinary traditions of scholarship have yet to be brought into productive alignment. On the one hand, ‘domestic’ colonies, labour camps, and other disciplinary reformatories have been explored by researchers such as Barbara Arneil (2017), John Field (2013) and, in the European context, Stephen Toth (2019). The development of ‘imperial’ equivalents of these institutions in European empires has been explored by Clare Anderson (2000, 2018) and her major ‘Carceral Archipelago’ European Research Council project. The history of colonial concentration camps is a relatively new area of focus that is rapidly expanding, led by Aidan Forth (2017, 2024), Elizabeth van Heyningen (2013), Jonas Kreienbaum (2019), and David Olusoga and Casper Erichsen (2011) Guest […]

Reflections Upon Gender and Sainthood, 1100-1500

by Antonia Anstatt (Merton, University of Oxford) and Ed van der Molen (University of Nottingham) The ‘Gender and Sainthood, 1100-1500’ Conference was held at the History Faculty of the University of Oxford on the 5th and 6th of April 2024, and was organised by Antonia Anstatt (University of Oxford) and Ed van der Molen (University of Nottingham). Bringing together scholars from the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, Canada, and the US, the conference aimed to place the complex cultural categories of sanctity and gender into conversation with each other via the methodological lens of queer theory and trans studies. While the relationship between sainthood and gender has been well-trodden ground in the field for some time thanks to the work of scholars such as Caroline Walker Bynum, Barbara Newman, and John Coakley, and the increasing awareness of medievalists of the possibilities that trans and queer theories offer to a wide range of areas of research made now an opportune time to revisit this familiar convergence of categories from a new and exciting angle.    The conference took as its starting point the 2021 publication of Trans and Genderqueer Subjects in Medieval Hagiography, edited by Alicia Spencer-Hall and Blake Gutt. This volume starts […]

Programme and Registration for “Women and Worlds of Learning in Europe: From the Medieval to the Modern Day”

Received from Anna Clark (St. John’s, University of Oxford) Event Overview ‘Women and Worlds of Learning’ is an interdisciplinary conference focused on the place of women within higher and further education. It is taking place 12th-13th April 2024 at the University of Oxford. Programme Friday 12th April 9.00-9.30: Welcome 9.30-10.30: Keynote 1 Annalisa Obeo (University of Padua) – The University of Women: On the experience of writing a history of women academics and students in Padua 10.30-10.45: Tea Break 10.45-12.15: Session 1 ​Panel 1 – The Place of Learned Ladies within Medieval Worlds of Learning​ Elena Rossi (University of Oxford/IHR) – TBC Victoria Rimbert (Universite Sorbonne Nouvelle/Universita degli Studi di Padova) – Laura Cereta’s World of Learning: itinerary of a XVth century learned woman ​Panel 2 – Framing the Feminine: The Role of Women within Art and Education Anna Clark (University of Oxford) – TBC Rose Teanby (De Montfort, Leicester) – A Woman’s Place?: Photographic Education in England 1839 – 1861 Adele Askelof (Stockholm University) – Photography education as power. Legitimation,social reproduction and positioning in the development of photographic education in Sweden1962-1997 ​12.15-13.15: Lunch 13.15-14.45: Session 2 Panel 3 – Beyond the Classroom: Alternative Models of Education Molly Cochran and Susannah Wright (Oxford […]