Conference: Soldiers, prisoners and converts between permeable borders in the Mare Nostrum (16th-18th centuries)

Open call for applications to participate in the Conference: Soldiers, prisoners and converts between permeable borders in the Mare Nostrum (16th-18th centuries)

Deadline: 7th February
Dates: 28th-29th May 2020
Place: Palermo (Italy)
Scientific Coordinators: Giovanna FIUME (, Rita FOTI ( and Bruno POMARA (

Scope: The plurality of religions and legal-normative systems coexisting in the Mediterranean spaces has generated complex configurations which escape unilateral considerations and call into question the differentiation between distinct “cultural universes”. On the contrary, even in times of strong conflict, exchanges, connections and zones of contact between Christian and Muslim societies are highlighted from multiple perspectives. In particular, a now impressive bibliography concerns the theme of forced migration and mobility, on the one side, and transcultural interactions and religious conversions, on the other one. The purpose of the congress is to involve scholars from different countries in a comparative and multidisciplinary discussion. By focusing and interweaving individual and group trajectories, as well as institutional actors and legal-regulatory productions, papers may answer some of the following questions:

  • What are the rules, legal resources, political-religious, diplomatic and legal discourses of Mediterranean mobility and migration? How are they produced, used and negotiated? Which formal and informal practices do they give rise to?
  • What kind of contacts, crossings, exchanges, conflicts, disputes characterize mobility taking into account the different geographical, religious and socio-cultural areas across the Mediterranean?
  • What are the individual and group paths within and across confessional and religious boundaries? What are the actions, the discursive constructions, the processes of definition and redefinition to construct one’s own identity-making instances in conditions of political-religious permeability and/or confessional closures and stiffening of affiliations?
  • What role do religion and law play?
  • What are the (legal, political, economic, diplomatic, iconographic and literary) forms and instruments of captivity and redemption?

Deadline and details: Researchers interested to participate in the conference are invited to submit their proposals with a title, an abstract (no more than 500 words) and a brief bio (maximum of 15 lines) before 7 February 2020 to:

Trade and cultural hybridism: Craftsmen, Merchants, and Slaves – Islamic Legacies in Spain

Workshop: Craftsmen, Merchants, and Slaves – Islamic Legacies in Spain (Madrid, 2020-2021, 2nd Grant Period, in collaboration with the ERC-project Global Horizons in Pre-Modern Art, Bern)

Beate Fricke

Recent Studies have shed light on the role of Muslim slaves on the Iberian Peninsula already long before the expansion into the New World (e.g. Blumenthal 2009, Campbell/Gwyn 2007, Philipps 2014, Trivellato/Halevi 2014). Their contribution to the economic success of cities like Barcelona, Sevilla, and Valencia, and their role in the production of silk, textiles, astronomical instruments, and other luxury goods though needs further research. The history of material culture with regard to the crafting of commodities has been primarily written from the perspectives of white producers and consumers. 

This workshop would like to raise the following questions: what were the functions, roles, and contributions of Muslim slaves in the production and trade of luxury commodities, textiles, astronomical instruments, maps, and treasured objects? Which impact did they have upon the production and mobility of heritage objects between Islam and Christian Europe, including types of goods transported by immigrants, diplomatic gift exchanges, war booty, repercussions for their host countries, acquisition of other goods and cultural hybridism?

Core Group Meeting

DATES: from 2019-06-24 09:00 to 2019-06-24 16:00

LOCATION: Institute For Balkan Studies, Serbian Academy Of Sciences And Arts. Knez Mihailova, 35 (4th Floor), 11 000, Belgrade, Se, Belgrade, Serbia

Islamic Heritage in Europe

Dates: January 14-16, 2020.
Place: Granada and Córdoba (Spain).
Scientific coordinators: Elena Paulino, Borja Franco, Antonio Urquízar and Elena Díez Jorge.
Host institution: University of Granada.
Partners: UNED. Departamento de Historia del Arte de la Universidad de Granada. Máster Universitario Oficial en Tutela del Patrimonio Histórico-Artístico. El legado de al-Ándalus. CSIC. Unidad Asociada I+D+i UGR al CSIC. “Patrimonio Cultural árabe e islámico”.
Scholars involved: Peter Burke, Elias Kolovos, Valentina Živković, María Marcos, Elena Paulino, Borja Franco, Antonio Urquízar, Elena Díez Jorge, and Juan Carlos Ruiz Souza.
Number of students: 15

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Early Modern migration routes and the identity spaces

(Coming Soon)

The training school and materials treat the migration of Moriscos and Sefardic Jews to the Ottoman Empire and Europe. They are supposed to study the acculturation between the immigrants and local societies, but also how each group has established their borders or their spaces of identity.

  • The migration routes or the context of each migration (forced in the case of the Moriscos and the Sefardic Jews who were expelled from Spain and Portugal, as well optional or voluntary in the case of the Jews of Livorno or even the Moriscos who chose to change their country of residence). 
  • The identity spaces, in the way of the acculturation or the open identity spaces, and the closed identity spaces.
  • Planned visit to Testour (Morisco town) as a very good example of the acculturation and the conservation of identity.

Visible and Invisible Borders Between Christians and Muslims in the Early Modern World

Conference “Visible and Invisible Borders Between Christians and Muslims in the Early Modern World

Deadline: 22nd of October 2019
Dates: 10-11 January 2020
Place: Central European University, Budapest (Hungary)

Scientific Coordinators: Robyn Dora RADWAY (, Gábor KÁRMÁN ( and Ferenc TÓTH (

Scope: It has traditionally been argued that with the rise of the modern nation state, borders increasingly became lines demarcating the spatial limits of state power. Recent efforts have been made to re-examine this territorial argument and pay close attention to the social, cultural, political, economic, and religious networks that created, reinforced, and also traversed borderlands. This conference aims to bring together an international group of scholars studying visible and invisible borders between Christians and Muslims in the early modern world in order to put distinct historiographical traditions into conversation with each other. It seeks to probe the overlaps, opportunities, and limitations of a comparative approach to borders and use the juxtaposition of thematically and temporally overlapping but spatially divergent case studies to raise questions of methodology, definitions, and future directions for research.

Deadline and details: Researchers interested to participate in the conference are invited to submit their proposals with a title, an abstract (no more than 300 words) and a brief bio (maximum of 10 lines) to Dr. Robyn Dora RADWAY (, and Dr. Gábor KÁRMÁN ( before 22nd of October 2019

Confronting identities: permeability and hybridity relationships among soldiers, prisoners and converts in the Mare Nostrum

(Coming Soon)

The objective of the international conference Confronting identities: permeability and hybridity relationships among soldiers, prisoners and converts in the Mare Nostrum to be held in Palermo is to involve a group of scholars from different countries (European and non-European) in a comparative discussion that has in recent years given rise to innovative research and to the construction of new paradigms in the field of historiography about the early modern Mediterranean.

The “Mediterranean is a culturally saturated space”. The plurality of religions and legal-regulatory systems coexisting in this space has in fact generated complex configurations that escape unilateral considerations and question the differentiation between distinct “cultural universes”. On the contrary, from multiple perspectives, even in times of strong conflicts, the changing ways and the actors of intercultural exchange, the interactions, the connections, the areas of contact between the societies of Western Europe and the Islamized ones are highlighted.

In particular, an already impressive bibliography has focused on the subject of forced migration and mobility. Mobility in the Mediterranean has a centuries-old military, mercantile and religious history. Invasions, crusades and jihad, expulsions, trade have resulted in voluntary or forced mobility from northern Africa and the Near East to Europe and vice versa. The captive, the slave, the prisoner, the renegade, the merchant are somehow the emblem. The slave in particular can be redeemed and this produces economic-financial mechanisms, religious discourses, dependent on political conditioning, causes diplomatic disputes and requires legal spaces and legal institutions.

Furthermore, the situation of captivity, like other occasions, leads to a multiplication of strategies of dissimulation and religious mutations, of identity negotiation, which report to the fragility, fluidity, relativity of identities, redefined and renegotiated in particular contexts. The focus intertwines many aspects and therefore requires a multidisciplinary perspective that COST is able to offer. For this reason, a moment of collective reflection can be used to identify ways to improve the quality of future research.

AIHV. Co-organization of panel on Islamic glass in the International Association of History of Glass Conference

(Coming Soon)

From the 14th century onwards, the production of glass and glazes is among the large group of things that are partially considered as an Islamic legacy in Europe. There are well known cases such as the Venetian one, where the transfer of knowledge to produce glass came from the straight connection with Islamic territories, entering in Venice, that ended up mastering it so well that started to produce and export mosque lamps back to Islamic territories. The objective of this session is to learn more about such cases in other geographical areas, extending to the circulation of written sources on the production and commerce of glass and glaze. 

The session will be subordinated to the following:

  • Trading and circulation of glass objects from Europe to Islamic regions and the other way around;
  • The influence that the presence of Islamic glasses left in Europe in terms of shapes, decorative features and employment of determined raw materials;
  • The influence of European shapes, decorative features and employment of determined raw materials in the glass production in Islamic territories.

Conference Early Modern Crusades

(Coming Soon)

For almost three decades now, there has been an intensification of research into the so-called “Later Crusades”. Norman Housley’s “The Later Crusades” was a pioneering study in this regard, since it focused on the crusading movement to the late 16th century. In the last decade, research on the topic has accelerated significantly. Since 2009, five anthologies of the series “Croisades tardives” have been published in France. The series focuses on crusade movements and ideologies in Europe since the early 14th century, and it has been able to unearth a hitherto underestimated richness of such phenomena in Europe, reaching far into the 17th century. In 2013, Housley was able to establish the network “Reconfiguring the Crusade in the Fifteenth Century: Goals, Agencies and Resonances” at the University of Leicester, financed by the Leverhulme Trust, a network that resulted in the publication of an anthology.

The time has come to gather all of this expertise and synthesize the most recent results in an accessible scholarly handbook that could be used by students and experts alike. The framework of CA 18129 will be used to bring together a network of researchers from the field, including those studying the Muslim and Ottoman legacy in the Mediterranean, in order to discuss key concepts, debate the structure of the book and produce a series of well balanced, orderly and relevant chapters on the topic of later crusades.

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