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Conferences 2014-2015

CMRS Co-sponsored Conference
"Touch: 19th Annual French & Francophone Studies Graduate Student Conference"
October 9-10, 2014

CMRS Co-sponsored Conference
“Auerbach, Our Contemporary? Responding to Figura and Mimesis”
January 16, 2015

This one-day symposium considers the legacy and significance of the German-Jewish scholar, Erich Auerbach (1892-1957), who fled Hitler's Germany first to Istanbul and then to the U.S. after World War Two. Auerbach's groundbreaking work on the impact of exegetical modes of thinking (“Figura,” 1938) on Western styles of representation from antiquity to the twentieth century (Mimesis, 1946) helped shape the modern discipline of Comparative Literature. A keynote address by Jacques Rancière will be followed by two lectures (Emily Apter and Roland Greene) and a roundtable (Efrain Kristal, Amir Mufti, Jane O. Newman, Martin Treml, and Christopher Warley). Co-sponsored by the Center for Medieval & Renaissance Studies and the Departments of Comparative Literature and English.

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CMRS Co-sponsored Conference
"Italian Identities through War," Italian Grad Student Conference
January 23-24, 2015

CMRS Shakespeare Symposium
“Touching Shakespeare: Proximity, Precarity, and Resilience in Renaissance Drama and Modern Life”

February 13-14, 2015

Touch, sensing, and sensation are lively topics in the humanities right now.  Touch intimates physical proximity and calls to mind the vulnerable body and the resilient flesh, even as it also carries tacit knowledge of the deep co-implication of physical and imaginative or intuitive aspects of proximity. The aim of this conference is to expose sensation to an existential and political triad of terms, by supplementing proximity, the emotional calculus of spatial closeness, with precarity—the forms of risk associated with economic, legal, or creaturely disability and interdependence—and with resilience—the responsive adaptation and accommodation to the physical and social environment by which individuals cope with precarity. In Shakespearean drama, the triad of proximity, precarity, and resilience concerns more than the on-going task of building sustainable relations between humans; it also entails recognition of the co-participation of human and nonhuman actors in the making of a habitable world. The plays of Shakespeare are documents of survival, prompts for improvisation, and exercises in pattern recognition with the capacity not only to inform us about the prior histories of proximity, precarity and resilience in relation to the senses, but also to aid us in our ongoing efforts to inhabit the spaces shaped by human effort, technological complexity, and environmental vulnerability today.

This symposium, organized by Professors Julia Reinhard Lupton (UC Irvine), James Kearney (UC Santa Barbara), and Lowell Gallagher (UCLA), is sponsored by CMRS. Speakers will include Professors Allison Deutermann (Baruch College, CUNY), Aranye Fradenburg (UC Santa Barbara), David Glimp (University of Colorado, Boulder), Laurie Shannon (Northwestern University), W.B. Worthen (Columbia University), and Julian Yates (University of Delaware).

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CMRS Conference
"The Illustrated Body: Printing, Anatomy, and Art in the Renaissance"
February 27 – 28, 2015

This international conference – jointly organized by CMRS, UCLA Library Special Collections, and UCLA Biomedical Library History and Special Collections for the Sciences – commemorates the 500th anniversary of the birth of Andreas Vesalius (1514 -1564), the Flemish founder of modern anatomy and the author of De humani corporis fabrica, one of the most circulated books on the subject during the early modern period, and the 500th anniversary of the death of Aldus Manutius, the founder of the Aldine Press in Venice.

UCLA Library Special Collections houses one of the world’s most important collections of books by the Aldine Press as well as many early printings of Vesalius’s ground-breaking anatomical illustrations. An exhibit of rare books from these collections, curated by Jane Carpenter (UCLA Young Research Library) and Russell Johnson (UCLA Biomedical Library) will be on display in conjunction with the conference.

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Co-sponsored Conference
"Empire and Exceptionalism: The Requerimiento at Five-Hundred"
March 6-7, 2015

Organized by the Center for 17th- and 18th-Century Studies.

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CMRS Conference
“Re/Creations: Text and Performance in Late Medieval/Early Modern Europe”
April 10 –April 11, 2015

The challenges and innovations that beset European theatre from the mid-fifteenth century to the end of the sixteenth century both enriched and imperiled this cultural institution. The renewal of interest in antique forms of theatre—tragedies and comedies—accompanied the displacement of passion and saint’s plays, while some of these popular forms were repurposed for political motives. Cross-cultural adaptation and translation flourished; authors increasingly tied their names to texts; productions were steered to elite audiences. Verse plays both humorous and dramatic jostled with the theatrical innovation of commedia dell’arte, which deemphasized written text in favor of set characters and physical improvisation. The social and governmental satires of farce, carnival play, and fool’s play often morphed into the Wars of Religion waged onstage, in turn leading to the suppression of authors and performances.

This conference, organized by Dr. Sharon D. King and Professor Massimo Ciavolella, addresses some of the myriad ways theatre was reinvented, restyled, reimagined, and reproduced in communities on the continent and in England during the later Middle Ages and early modern periods. It also explores how these plays are received and perceived today. In conjunction with the conference, two early plays will be performed by Les Enfans Sans Abri: the anonymous farce The Gallant Who Got Away With It and Marguerite de Navarre’s Stricken.

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CMRS Symposium
Comparing Dragons — Ancient, Medieval, and Modern
May 8 - May 9, 2015

This conference examines and compares different traditions concerning the polymorphic figure of the dragon. An international roster of specialists conducts an informative tour of the lore, lairs, and symbolism of dragons from various cultures and historical periods. Organized by Joseph F. Nagy (English, UCLA) and sponsored by the UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the UCLA Humanities Division of the College of Letters and Sciences.

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