May 10 – Kelly Andino

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Kelly Andino will present “The Holy Sepulchre until the Siege of Jerusalem: An Examination of the Late Antique Texts, Archaeological Evidence, and Material Sources.”

This paper will attempt to reconstruct the history of the early life of the Basilica Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem until the seventh century, relying upon textual and material sources to reconfigure a narrative of both the physical building and its role within Byzantine religion and culture.

Please join us on Tuesday, May 10th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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May 3 – Leonidas Pittos

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Leonidas Pittos will present “Aesthesis and Aesthetics in Nicholas Kabasilas’ Mystagogic Works.”

The relationship between Hesychasm and the liturgical theology of the lay theologian and humanist Nicholas Kabasilas has been debated in modern scholarship. Yet, much of the debate has focused narrowly on the differences between Hesychasm’s contemplative spiritualism and Kabasilas’ emphasis on liturgy as well as on the role of reason in spiritual perfection. This paper will suggest that aesthetics and the role of the senses in liturgy and spirituality may cast a brighter light on Kabasilas’ relationship to Hesychasm.

Please join us on Tuesday, May 3rd, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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April 19 – Carlos Grenier

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Carlos Grenier will present “To String the Pearls of Orthodoxy: Vernacular Sunni Apologetics in Fifteenth Century Gallipoli in its Borderland Context.”

This paper assesses vernacular Turkish Sunni dogmatic and catechistic writing in the fifteenth-century Marmara frontier region within its local context, marked by contemporaneous conversations between local Muslims and Christians — as recorded in Ottoman, Greek, and Western accounts — on the nature of their respective faiths. It argues that the successful and durable forms of populist Ottoman Islam represented by the writings of the Yazicizade brothers of Gallipoli (Mehmed, d. 1451 and Ahmed, d. 1465) was fundamentally conditioned by the interconfessional debates of the frontier.

Please join us on Tuesday, April 19th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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April 12 – Nathan Leidholm

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Nathan Leidholm will present “The Representation and Appropriation of the Persian Past in Middle Byzantine Court Rhetoric.”

It is commonly acknowledged that Byzantine culture owed a particular debt to and maintained certain affinities with elements of the Ancient Greek, Roman, and Christian past. This is particularly visible in imperial court rhetoric, which served as a vital means of constructing the public image of the emperor and reinforcing the cultural values that held the empire together. This paper, however, explores a fourth, often overlooked element in such rhetoric, which played an important role in the construction of the image of the Byzantine ruler and of the empire’s place in history: the Achaemenid Persian past.

Please join us on Tuesday, April 12th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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April 5 – Matthew Milliner

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Matthew Milliner will present “A Madonna of the Future: Rethinking the Afterlife of Icons.”

Echoing Nicholae Iorga’s Byzance après Byzance, the art historical phrase “afterlife of icons” is intended to counter the assumption that the influence of Byzantine icons ended in 1453. The term afterlife, however, implies death, and is therefore ill suited to charting the vibrant life of Byzantine icons from the fifteenth century to the present. After examining its historical beginnings, this paper explores one particular Byzantine icon’s ubiquity in Renaissance painting, popular visual culture, and contemporary art. Replacing afterlife, an alternate biological metaphor emerges: Byzantium as a womb for the embryonic development of icons, leading to the violent birth pangs of 1453, after which the life of an icon actually begins.

Please join us on Tuesday, April 5th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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March 29 – Jaś Elsner

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Jaś Elsner will present “Vrt‘anēs K‘ert‘oł and the Dynamics of Iconoclasm in Seventh Century Armenia.”

This paper explores the seventh century response to iconoclasm made by the Armenian prelate Vrt‘anēs K‘ert‘oł — a text with interesting ramifications for the bigger history of the cult of images and the resistance to images in the early Christianities of the East.

Please join us on Tuesday, March 29th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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Spring 2016 Schedule

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce our Spring 2016 schedule. All workshops will meet in CWAC 152 on Tuesdays at 4:30 PM.

March 29 – Jaś Elsner will present “Vrtanes Kertogh and the Dynamics of Iconoclasm in Seventh Century Armenia”

April 5 – Matthew Milliner will present “A Madonna of the Future: Rethinking the “Afterlife of Icons”

April 12 – Nathan Leidholm will present “The Representation and Appropriation of the Persian Past in Middle Byzantine Court Rhetoric”

April 19 – Carlos Grenier will present “To String the Pearls of Orthodoxy”: Vernacular Sunni Apologetics in Fifteenth Century Gallipoli in its Borderland Context”

May 3 – Leonidas Pittos will present “Aesthesis and Aesthetics in Nicholas Kabasilas’ Mystagogic Works”

May 10 – Kelly Andino will present “The Holy Sepulchre until the Siege of Jerusalem: An Examination of the Relevant Patristic Texts, Archaeological Evidence, and Material Sources”

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March 9 – Deborah Deliyannis

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Deborah Deliyannis (Indiana University Bloomington) will present “Material Culture: Late Antique or Early Medieval?”

Please join us on Wednesday, March 9th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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March 8 – Nathan Hardy

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Nathan Hardy will present “Portraying Prototypal Presence: The Image of Edessa as an Exemplum of ‘Presence’ in John of Damascus and the Narratio de Imagine Edessena.

This paper examines two descriptions of the famous Image of Edessa (later, the Mandylion), in John of Damascus’ On Divine Images I.33 and in the Narratio de Imagine Edessena, respectively, and tries to show how the Image functioned as an explanation of the concept of Prototypal Presence. In particular, the paper aims to articulate three strategies used in the Narratio to explain this rather abstract concept.

Please join us on Tuesday, March 8th, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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March 1 – Jessica Mutter

The Workshop on Late Antiquity and Byzantium in conjunction with the Islamic Studies Workshop is pleased to announce its next meeting.

Jessica Mutter will present “Evolving Depictions of Religious Transformation in Eighth-Century Greater Syria.”

This paper addresses the various shifts in religious identities and boundaries that occurred in Syria after the Muslim conquests, and how religious conversion was portrayed in Syriac and Arabic historical sources during the seventh, eighth, and early ninth centuries CE.

Please join us on Tuesday, March 1st, at 4:30 pm in CWAC 152.

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