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CFP: International Graduate Students Colloquium, "Why did they choose this place? Settlements, Representations and References of Buildings and Objects (11th-17th centuries)"

  • Dates: 02 Nov, 2017 – 15 Jan, 2018
  • Location: Amiens, France

Call For Papers: International Graduate Students Colloquium, "Why did they choose this place? Settlements, Representations and References of Buildings and Objects (11th-17th centuries)," Amiens (France), 29-30 May 2018
Deadline: 15 January 2018

The research laboratory Trame (Texts, Representations, Archaeology and Memory from Antiquity to the Renaissance) of the University of Picardie Jules Verne associated with the research unit Transitions. Middle Ages and First Modernity (University of Liège) and with the Center for Advanced Studies in the Renaissance of the University François Rabelais (Tours) is organising three international meetings implemented by PhD students of these three institutions. the aim of the meetings is to enable exchanges and discussions between PhD students, junior researchers and experimented colleagues.

The first meeting will be held in Liège on Tuesday the 30th of January and Wednesday the 31st of January 2018 on the theme "Transition(s): concept, methods and case studies (14th-17th centuries)".

The second meeting will be held in Amiens on Tuesday the 29 th of May and Wednesday the 30rd of May 2018 on the theme : "Why did they choose this place? Settlements, Representations and References of Buildings and Objects (11th-17th centuries)"

This colloquium will be divided into two parts: first, the choice of the place of the building, and then the choice of the place of the object.
The construction of a new building usually start with an important thinking concerning the localization. The choice is strategic or symbolic, sometimes both, and depend on its function, its sponsor and its geographical context. For example, a monastery will set up on a secluded place or, in the contrary, on an urban center; a military fortress must occupy a strategic place to dominate a territory etc. In this way, it’s interesting to study all these factors, actors and issues regarding the establishment process in a rural, urban or suburban context. In the same way, objects (such as paintings, sculptures, precious objects, reliquaries, pieces of jewellery, funerary monuments, pieces of furniture, symbols of power etc.) are interesting to study. A lot of them need to be placed on a specific location, whether it’s in a real place or in the composition of a bidimensional work. The place where the object is arranged can be modified in consequence as there
are interactions between them. The goal of this meeting is to gauge the notion of place in all its forms in order to understand its meaning and its importance during the Middle Ages and First Modernity.

Day 1: The place of the Building
This first day will be focused on the buildings. The statements have to match the three
following approaches:
- The location choices of the edifice: how the place was chosen? Who were the actors of this choice? What were the effects of this implantation on a local and global historical context? Studies could focus on a specific place, a religious community, an edifice or an archaeological site. It’s a matter of showing the location strategies and the territorial transformations after the creation of a new "place of power" or a place of production in a historical and geographical context.
- The place‘s portrayal is the second theme: why did they choose this place? How is it
represented and why? Are they accurate the original place? How fictive places are show? The statements have to consider the different means used to point out peculiar location and the underlying goals.
- The place’s references in the sources: how literature and manuscripts mention those places whether real or fictive? What is the purpose in those texts? In an illuminated book, how is introduced the description of the place and what are the connections between the picture and the text? The statements could cover the evolution of the terms used to qualify a place. For example, the Latin word "prioratus" is barely used to qualify a priory between the 11th and the 13th centuries in manuscripts but we find lot of others words like house, farm, church etc.

Day 2: The place of the object
Concerning the place of the object we propose the three following themes:
- The position of the object:  usually, special objects are put in specific places: a building, a public space or a private one, or even a tomb. It would be interesting to attempt to understand why those objects have been placed in well-chosen areas, which were the factors and the issues according to which this decision has been made and by who. The history of the different places in which an object dating back to the 11th to the 17th century has been settled from his creation up to the present time can be made through a historiographical perspective. Reflections focusing on the methods used by historians, historians of arts or archaeologists to identify the original place of an object are
welcomed.
- Interaction between the object and the place: the goal is to think about the conjoint and
disjointed evolution of the building and the object: which are the impacts of the mutations and the intern reconstructions of the building on the object? How a building can specifically be built to accommodate one or several objects? This theme concerns both religious and public spaces, but also private places and the first experiences in museum architecture linked to a collection. Once again, all reflections about the methodology used to understand those interactions are welcomed.
- Representation of the object in paintings, illuminated manuscripts and sculptures: this
third theme invite to wonder about the methods used to represent the object on pieces of art. How is it put on the spot when it plays a central role in the pieces of art? How an object can be used to build up the composition of a picture?

Contribution Modalities
Lectures should relate to history, archaeology, history of arts and literature, from the 11th to the 17th century. The purpose is to have a brand new and interdisciplinary view on the notion of "place" which finally concern several research subjects. Communications should try to introduce historiographical elements enabling to develop comparisons between the different interventions and to think about the notion of "place" nd its evolution through time.

The proposals are expected for the 15th of January 2018 at the latest. They should be fifteen-line summary of the proposed lecture addressed to the Organising Committee, send together with a CV, the title of the thesis et the name of the research director(s). Candidate will be informed of the approval or the rejection of their proposal by the 15 th of February 2018.
Lectures should last 20 minutes maximum, with the possibility to project a Powerpoint. They can be made in French or in English.
We will unfortunately not be able to provide you financial help for the accommodation or the transport.
If you need an attestation to valorise your participation, we will be able to provide it.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need further information.
Organising Committee:
- Julie Colaye, PhD student in medieval history : juliecolaye@gmail.com
- Marie Quillent, PhD student in history of medieval art : marie.quillent@wanadoo.fr

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