Culture of memory in East Central Europe (1000–1600)
March 12–14, 2008, Ciążeń (University of Poznań)
Call for papers
The University Library of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań will host the conference "Culture of memory in East Central Europe (1000–1600)". The conference will be held in the Research Center and Library of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Ciążeń, in the neighborhood of Poznań, with accommodations in the former Bishop's Palace in Ciążeń.
This conference will attempt to examine the various facets of memory culture in medieval and Early Modern East Central Europe through workshops focusing on different aspects of the subject.
The rich culture of memory of the late Middle Ages and the Early Modern period is one of the most astonishing features of European civilisation. It created a previously unknown variety of methods and aids for memorising and remembering the most important cultural products of the age (the Bible, legal literature, chronologic catalogues, etc.), served as an important tool in disseminating moral and ethical teaching both in private, in printed books and from the preacher's pulpit and reshaped the relationship between the reader and the text. While the research of the past 50 years could answer many questions concerning the emergence of these texts and techniques, many crucial issues remain to be addressed. It is especially true for the region of East Central Europe, where the groundbreaking studies of Frances Yates or Paolo Rossi could not exert profound influence in the time of their publication due to external reasons. Why does the culture of memory become so important exactly in the period when the retrieval of information and knowledge becomes much easier with the help of the mechanical reproduction of books, with new methods of indexing, page numbering, and registering the printed book? What is the relationship of the book as an object of cultural memory to the widespread mnemotechnical processes of this period? The existing histories of medieval memory culture, although claiming to be universal in approach, completely neglect the East Central European area. At the same time, the relevant source material has remained largely undiscovered and unevaluated in this region.
Lectures may address any topic with an interest to the culture of memory in the East Central European regions within the timespan of 1000–1600, while the focus of the conference tends to be around the period 1300–1550. The working languages of the conference are English and German, preferably.
Please send proposals for papers as MS-Word attachments to Dr Rafal Wójcik, the chair of the program committee (firstname.lastname@example.org). Proposals should include (in one file) an abstract (no more than one page) for the paper, and a one-page cv, including complete contact information, affiliation and email address. The organizers will be able to cover the accommodation and conference costs (except travel) for the lecturers with the generous support of the International Visegrad Fund. The proceedings of the conference are planned to be published by the Publishing House of the Adam Mickiewicz University.
A limited number of places are available for attendance only (the accommodation and the conference fee for visitors is 450 zl, approx. 130 euros).