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October 2017

CMRS Open House

Tuesday, October 3 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm

Please join CMRS Director Professor Massimo Ciavolella and the staff of the Center for our annual Open House celebrating the start of a new academic year. This year marks CMRS’s 54th year of promoting interdisciplinary and cross-cultural studies of the period from Late Antiquity to the mid-seventeenth century. Come meet other faculty members, students, colleagues, and friends who share these interests and find out more about CMRS’s programs, fellowships, grants, and publications. We look forward to seeing you at our Open House…

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Split: Conservation of a World Heritage Site

Monday, October 9 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Split: Conservation of a World Heritage Site lecture by Goran Niksic

Founded in 305 as a fortified villa of a retired emperor, Split developed into a medieval town, keeping traces from all periods and incorporating them into one harmonic whole. In 1979 the historic core of Split was declared a World Heritage Site on account of its well preserved architecture from all periods, and also because it is still a living organism with all urban functions. The rapid growth of the modern city, the pressure of commercialization, and unfavorable changes in…

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French Graduate Student Conference

Thursday, October 12 - Friday, October 13

UCLA Department of French & Francophone Studies 22nd Annual Graduate Student Conference “Que sais-je?: Rethinking Learning and Knowledge” Keynote Speaker: Leon Sachs, University of Kentucky For further information, write Allison Kershner in the Department of French and Francophone Studies. Co-sponsored by UCLA-CMRS.

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Beyond Nostalgia: Berber ‘Puritans’ and the End of Andalusian Convivencia?

Monday, October 16 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

CMRS Roundtable Almost without exception, the established English-language scholarly and popular narratives of the history of Islamic Spain present the period of the Umayyad Caliphate of Córdoba and the era of the taifa kings that followed it as a “Golden Age” of tolerance, ethnoreligious diversity, and cultural dynamism.  In this view, the incursion first of the Almoravids, and then of the Almohads brought this “Golden Age” to an abrupt end. These two regimes, whose foreign, Berber character is inevitably emphasized,…

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Dante and Modernity

Friday, October 20 - Saturday, October 21
dante and homer

In a famous passage of Survival in Auschwitz, the memoir that emerged from his harrowing experience in the concentration camp, Primo Levi strives to recall from his memory Canto 26 of Dante’s Inferno – a canto that narrates the mad flight and tragic fall of the Greek hero Ulysses. Levi’s account of Ulysses’ speech to his companions in Inferno 26 turns into the prism through which the reader of Survival journeys across nearly three millennia of European history, from the…

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A Mercenary Logic? Muslim Soldiers in the Service of Christian Kings

Wednesday, October 25 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

CMRS Distinguished Visiting Scholar Lecture Over the course of the late-thirteenth and fourteenth centuries — as they subdued, expelled, and enslaved Muslim populations — the kings of the Crown of Aragon recruited thousands of North African cavalry soldiers, whom they called jenets, to serve in their armies and in their courts as body guards, members of their entourage, and even, on occasion, as their entertainment. Drawing on Latin, Romance, and Arabic archival sources from Spain and North Africa, CMRS Distinguished Visiting Scholar Hussein…

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Emerging Scholars Conference

Friday, October 27 @ 8:00 am - 6:00 pm

The Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies is hosting this interdisciplinary conference to provide UCLA graduate students with an opportunity to present their recent research and publish their papers. Organized by Sharon Gerstel, UCLA Professor of Art History and CMRS Associate Director. 8:00 am Coffee, tea, fruit, pastries 8:30 Welcoming Remarks Sharon Gerstel, CMRS Associate Director and conference organizer David Schaberg, Dean of Humanities 8:45 Laura Horan (Art History) “The Obelisks of Rome and Constantinople, The Tetrarchs of Luxor: An…

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Cutting Out the Middleman: Petrarch’s Attempted ‘damnatio memoriae’ of Walter of Châtillon’s ‘Alexandreis’

Monday, October 30 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

CMRS Roundtable Even in this era of increasing skepticism about Petrarch’s break with the medieval past, his Latin epic, the Africa, is still seen as a major monument ushering in the Renaissance through its classicizing form and themes. Walter of Châtillon’s Alexandreis, a Latin epic about Alexander of Macedon written almost two centuries earlier, can lay claim to most of the ‘new’ classicisms detected in Petrarch’s Africa. In this Roundtable, Justin Haynes (Department of Classics, UC Davis) exposes the great lengths Petrarch went to in order to…

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CMRS Silent Movie Night: “Häxan”

Tuesday, October 31 @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

CMRS screens the 1922 Scandinavian silent film documentary classic Häxan (a version of which is known in English as Witchcraft Through the Ages), directed by Benjamin Christensen with live piano accompaniment by Cliff Retallick. The CMRS film series is made possible by the Armand Hammer Endowment for the UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies.

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November 2017

‘¿Where is Barbarossa?’: Spanish Sensory Perception in North Africa”

Wednesday, November 1 @ 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

In the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, Spanish forces swept into North Africa and conquered a series of coastal towns from Morocco to Libya. Historians have seen this as a kind of mirror image of Muslim conquests in the Iberian Peninsula, and the subsequent occupation seemed to take place in the familiar context of Christian-Muslim relations in the western Mediterranean. As such, Spaniards are presumed to almost have a pre-knowledge of a land that was an overnight sail from…

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California Medieval History Seminar

Saturday, November 4 @ 9:30 am - 4:00 pm

The Fall Session of the California Medieval History Seminar meets at the Huntington Library to discuss four pre-distributed research papers. Participants are scholars in the field at various stages of their careers. All attendees at the seminar are expected to read the papers in advance and discuss the research. Speakers and paper topics are announced by e-mail. Click here for additional information. These are the papers under discussion at this seminar: Geoffrey Koziol (UC Berkley) – “The Devil in the…

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A Medieval Mansio Refuge on the Carolingian Alpine Road in Bramans, France

Monday, November 13 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

CMRS Roundtable The old Carolingian and medieval route through the Savoie French Alps connected Grenoble to Turin. The route followed what had been the Roman Road and before that a Celtic pathway that is often suggested as Hannibal’s route into Italy. Along the ancient pathway over the Col du Clapier-Savine Coche Pass, a ruined stone refuge guards the way at an altitude of 2200 meters (7000 ft.), above which weather could become a limiting factor any day of the year.…

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Sound and the Sacred

Friday, November 17 - Saturday, November 18
Sound and the Sacred, a UCLA-CMRS conference organized by Sharon Gerstel.

A CMRS Conference organized by Sharon Gerstel and co-sponsored by the UCLA Center for Musical Humanities at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Details to be announced shortly.

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At the Crossroads of Cultural Networks: The Creation of a Medieval Treasury for San Isidoro de León

Wednesday, November 29 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

CMRS Distinguished Visiting Scholar Lecture Medieval treasuries provide a material witness to the interests and aspirations of the individuals and institutions that created them. For the central Middle Ages, there is extensive written evidence of the multiple uses made of treasuries and their contents by royal women and men. Treasuries could function as a source of gifts for allies, which bound them with obligations; prestigious possessions of one’s own for ostentation before an elite audience; or financial reserves that could…

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