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CfP: Transition(s): concept, methods and case studies (14th–17th centuries)

Friday, June 16, 2017   (0 Comments)

International PhD Students' Meetings

“Transition(s): concept, methods and case studies (14th–17th centuries)”
Liège, 30th and 31st January 2018

The Research Unit Transitions. Middle Ages and First Modernity (University of Liège) associated with the research laboratory TRAME (Texts, Representations, Archaeology and Memory from Antiquity to the Renaissance) of the University of Picardie Jules Verne and with the Centre for Advanced Studies in the Renaissance of the University François Rabelais (Tours) on the occasion of International PhD Students' Meetings in three parts. Implemented by PhD students of these three institutions, the aim of the meetings is to enable exchange and discussion between PhD students, junior researchers and skilled colleagues. The first of these three meetings will be held in Liège on Tuesday January 30th and Wednesday January 31st, 2018.

From the Middle Ages until the upheavals brought about by Galilean science, Europe underwent a period of unceasing questioning which challenged the political balance and its legitimacy, shook the foundations of confessional unity, and expanded the limits of knowledge and of creation. In an attempt to transcend the inherited divisions of the long historiographical tradition, the Research Unit Transitions. Middle Ages and First Modernity ( explores these constant transformations in the Western and in the Mediterranean Basin. Open to Medievalists and Modernists, the Research Unit promotes confrontation between research practices, original collaboration, and the sharing of results in a transdisciplinary way. Furthermore, it attempts to show several factors which contributed to the construction of the social and cultural frameworks by which we define ourselves even today.

In January 2018, the Liège meetings will focus on the theme “Transition(s): concept, methods and case studies (14th–17th centuries)”. Nowadays, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research on the whole tend to delete categories and traditional historical periodization in favor of transversal approach of objects, phenomena, genders, forms and ideas. The concept of “Transition” is linked to the idea of “passage” and it may be defined as “the passage from one state to another” a “degree or an intermediate state” (Trésor de la langue française). From their own research objects, participants will be asked to think on this concept, its acceptability and its relevance toward those of “Mutation”, “Change”, “Transformation”, “Modification”, “Revolution” and “Metamorphosis”. Thereby, it aims to renew the debate on the methods and theoretical ways which mark all disciplinary fields presented in those meetings.

How does one develop a methodology and an analytic grid allowing the study of objects, practices and behaviours positioned between two elements, between two historical periods, between two trends, between two styles, between two manners to do, to see, to write, to think and to believe? Also, how does one get out of this idea of “between two”? Do Transition have breaks, innovations, transfers, exchanges or flow aspects? Do these objects really depict the passage from a practice, a period, from one style to another, or is it actually because the Researcher sees them as doing so? Is the concept of “Transition” a new category, a new pragmatic approach, but nevertheless fruitful? Is this concept involved in advances in our disciplines, and why?

This methodological approach may be considered by concrete questions about the linguistic, cultural, historical, artistic transitions which happened between the 14th and the 17th centuries in Western Europe and the Mediterranean basin, whether through actors and their works (objects, texts), ideas, and / or the areas within which they lived.

Lectures will be the subject of transdisciplinary discussions. They should not last more twenty minutes and they will be given in either French, English or Italian. Each lecture will then be followed by a short debate with the audience.

The organising committee espects the PhD students' proposals for Friday the 15th of September 2017 at the latest. They should be addressed to the RU Transitions ( as an attached document that includes the personal data of the PhD student and those of the research director(s), as well as the title of the thesis, the title of the lecture, the year of registration as a PhD student and, finally, a fifteen-line summary of the proposed lecture. Proposals are to be written in French, English or Italian. Candidates will be informed of the approval or the rejection of their proposal by the 15th of October 2017.

Each PhD student is invited to contact his own institution about the possibility of valorising his or her participation in the study days within the framework of their doctoral training (attestation, ECTS credits, etc.). At the end of the seminar, the organizers will provide a document certifying the active participation of the PhD student in the meeting. Furthermore, in view of its limited financial resources, RU Transitions will not be able to bear the cost of mobility and accommodation for Participants.

Organising Committee : Emilie Corswarem, Sébastien Damoiseaux, Frédéric Degroote, Aurore Drécourt, Adelaïde Lambert, Anne-Sophie Laruelle, Julie Piront

Scientific Committee : Emilie Corswarem, Annick Delfosse, Laure Fagnart, Marie-Elisabeth Henneau, Nicola Morato, Julie Piront

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