2007-2008 Events


Conference | Science as Navigation: Leonhard Euler’s Journeys | November 30, 2007
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020), 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM. Free and open to the public.

An International Conference at UC Santa Barbara on the Occasion of Leonhard Euler’s 300th Birthday.

This one-day conference investigates the central role played, in the life and work of Leonhard Euler (1707-1783), by the description, calculation and analysis of sites or places (topoi). Active for many years in Saint Petersburg and Berlin and fluent in at least three languages, Euler was no stranger to changes in location and to the negotiation of different cultural and scientific contexts and their respective rhetorical, cultural, and scientific conventions. However, Euler’s more specifically scientific activity in mathematics, astronomy, geometry, engineering and philosophy is also linked, in more ways than one, to the problem of topoi and their notation. Not only is his solution to the problem of the “Seven Bridges of Königsberg” considered one of the early foundations of mathematical topology, he also devoted much energy to ship building and navigation. During his stay at the Petersburg Academy, Euler carried out important work in cartography, which he blamed for contributing to his failing eyesight. Finally, many of the letters Euler wrote to the Princess of Anhalt-Dessau can be considered topoi in a more literary sense: they are reworkings of more or less traditional (scientific) sites and materials, building blocks for a comprehensive topology of culture founded on exact science and the ideals of the Enlightenment.

This international conference is being organized by the Department of Germanic, Slavic and Semitic Studies at UCSB, and co-sponsored by the EMC and the Department of English.

Annual EMC Conference | Science & Technology, 1500-1800 | March 14, 2008
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020)

An interdisciplinary one-day conference sponsored by the Early Modern Center, in collaboration with the Transcriptions Project, on the EMC’s annual theme.

This one-day conference will be a forum to explore the two interrelated fields of science and technology in the early modern period. We conceive of science and technology as a broad range of social and cultural practices, cultural and historical formations, and epistemological perspectives. How and why were systems of knowledge created and proliferated? What particular scientific developments participated in the exploration of the body, the mind, time, and space? How were individuals, communities, and nations impacted by new systems of knowledge, particular objects or hardware, or advanced procedures to accomplish tasks? Since both the Early Modern Center and the Transcriptions Project undertake initiatives that bridge the study of digital media and the humanities, we are also interested in proposals that apply the perspectives of new media study to the cultural formations of the early modern period.

For more information about the conference – CFP, conference program and registration, and more – please visit the conference website.

“Science and Technology” Website

EMC Undergraduate Conference | May 30, 2008
South Hall 2635, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM

This conference will feature exceptional work by undergraduates in English at UCSB. Reception to follow.


Text Encoding Seminar & Workshop | September 19, 2007
The UC Transliteracies Project and UCSB Early Modern Center are pleased to announce that they are jointly hosting a Text Encoding Seminar at UCSB instructed by Julia Flanders and Syd Bauman of Brown University. (See here for full description and schedule, and a suggested advance reading list.)

Registration for the event is free (please register with Alan Liu). All presentations are open except for the two hands-on workshops, which have limited enrollment (if interested, request enrollment in the workshops at the time of registration). Events will be held in the UCSB English Department (South Hall, 2nd floor).

The goal of the Seminar is two-fold: first, to provide faculty and students in the humanities and other fields with an opportunity to examine the significance of text encoding as a scholarly practice, through a combination of discussion and practical experimentation. And second, to provide supporting resources for researchers who want to experiment with text encoding on their own, or would like to start or become involved with a digital research project. The resources and events on the schedule of the seminar are all aimed at faculty and students who have little or no technical experience but are interested in digital textuality. In addition to providing support in grappling with the technical topics, these resources also engage with the scholarly issues that surround these technologies.

Dr. Julia Flanders is Director of Brown University Women Writers Project; Associate Director of Brown Scholarly Technology Group; Editor-in-chief of Digital Humanities Quarterly; and Vice-chair of the TEI (Text Encoding Initiative) Consortium. Syd Bauman is Senior Programmer/Analyst at the Brown University Women Writers Project. The bulk of funding for this Seminar is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, which gave the Brown University Women Writers Project a grant to support a series of such seminars around the nation.

See here for general information about text encoding and the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) Guidelines (an international and interdisciplinary standard that enables libraries, museums, publishers, and individual scholars to represent a variety of literary and linguistic texts for online research, teaching, and preservation).

UCSB Eighteenth Century Reading Group | October 26, 2007
Early Modern Center (South Hall 2510), 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM

After a hiatus, the UCSB Eighteenth Century Reading Group is meeting again! Our reading will be from the recent work of one of our Fall Colloquium speakers, Lynn Festa’s book Sentimental Figures of Empire in Eighteenth-Century Britain and France; a great opportunity to prepare for the colloquium, as well as to read a genuinely fascinating scholarly work.

A master copy of the selections from Festa’s book will be available in the EMC (in case you own the book, we will read pp. 1-14, 111-15, and 125-71).

An Early Modern Halloween! | October 31, 2007
Early Modern Center (South Hall 2510), 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Please come and trick-or-treat (well, preferably only treat, please) at the Early Modern Center this Halloween. Snacks will be provided, and costumes will receive special mention and a photo on the EMC website!

Afterwards, please also visit the English Club’s spooky readings in SH 2635, the department office staff (dressed up as their favorite authors) in South Hall 2607, and go trick-or-treating at the ACGCC (South Hall 2710) from 12:00pm-1:00pm.

Fall Colloquium | Maureen Quilligan & Lynn Festa | November 2, 2007
South Hall 2635, 1:00 PM – 4:30 PM

An event to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the British abolition of the slave trade, and to consider the centrality both of slavery and of the abolitionist project to the period 1500-1800.

We are very lucky to welcome Maureen Quilligan (English, Duke University) and Lynn Festa (English, University of Wisconsin, Madison) as this year’s invited colloquium speakers. Their talks will allow us to reflect on the importance of the abolition of the British slave trade as a cultural, historical and political event, as well as to highlight some of the persistent problems that reverberate from it.

Maureen Quilligan, “Rereading the Black Legend: Racing the Atlantic Slave Trade.”
I hope to talk about the subtle processes by which the Atlantic slave trade became racist, unlike the earlier Mediterranean traffic out of which it grew, which did not enslave specific ethnicities, though the prevalence of central Europeans did give the economic condition its name; much of the language of “color” difference grew out of the denigration of Catholic Spain by northern Protestant propagandists, intent upon vying with Spain’s new world empire. Taking Spain’s own self critique about the treatment of indigenous peoples in the New World, and adding to it the complications of Spain’s expulsion of Jews and Moors, northern protestants denigrated the Spanish and turned them into the “black” other within Europe itself, in the process foisting onto the Spanish all the racist cruelty of the labor for gold metal, reserving for themselves the enlightened efficiency of the trade itself.

Maureen Quilligan is R. Florence Brinkley Professor of English and former chair of the department at Duke University. She has previously taught at Yale University and at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of books on allegory, on women writers in the middle ages and in the Renaissance; she has recently co-edited a volume of essays with Margaret Greer and Walter Mignolo titled Rereading the Black Legend: The Discourses of Religious and Racial Difference in the Renaissance Empires due out from Chicago this November.

Lynn Festa, “Kin, Kind, Slave: Human Difference and Anti-slavery Discourse in Eighteenth-Century Britain.”
This paper examines the relationship between the categories of subject and object, human and animal, person and thing, in late eighteenth-century abolitionist discourse in Great Britain. In opposing the degradation of men to the status of beasts or things, anti-slavery writers sought to enlarge the class of those who count as human through both the language of familial kinship and the categorical claim of species belonging. The tension between the purported universality of the abolitionists’ rhetoric of kinship (of “brotherhood” within the great family of humankind) and the selective inclusiveness of kind (species difference) was often resolved through an emphasis on the suffering and feeling of slaves, yet this emphasis on a quality shared by human and animal alike often led to a blurring of the very distinctions that these writers sought to assert (manifested in the overlapping discourses of human and animal rights during this period). Writers sought to affirm the irreducibility of person to thing or animal by depicting the slave in relation to animals and things, and interrogating the rightful and wrongful use of different kinds of being(s). This paper examines how abolitionist writers sought to discover the purchase points of human difference not only in the possession of particular distinguishing traits but also in active relations of use and labor: the issue, metaphorically and literally, of the human hand. The paper closes with a consideration of the figure of the slave’s hand: the hand as it is used to leverage a set of distinctions between humans and animals, as well as between slaves, the things they produce, and the machines they operate.

Lynn Festa is associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She is the author of Sentimental Figures of Empire in Eighteenth-Century Britain and France (2006) and co-editor of the forthcoming collection, The Postcolonial Enlightenment: Eighteenth-Century Colonialism and Postcolonial Theory (Oxford, 2008). She is currently working on a new project on the relationship between persons and things in eighteenth-century Britain.

Each invited speaker will present a formal paper, followed by a roundtable discussion featuring James Kearney and Elizabeth Heckendorn Cook as faculty respondents, and Billy Hall and Mac Test as graduate student respondents; the event will conclude with an open forum discussion and subsequent reception.

EMC Brown Bag Lunch | Pax Hehmeyer, Patrick Ludolph, & Laura Miller | November 16, 2007
South Hall 2635, 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Presenting work in progress by:

Pax Hehmeyer, “Imagining Publication and the Elizabethan Female Complaint”
Patrick Ludolph, “Gilbert Mabbott and the Narrative Project”
Laura Miller, “Printing a System for the World: Extrapolation, Overload, and the Principia.”

Please support these graduate students by coming to the brown bag to enjoy and discuss their presentations!

Movie Screening and Discussion | Amazing Grace | November 28, 2007
South Hall 2635, 7:00 PM

Please join us for a screening and discussion of Amazing Grace (2007), a film released to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the British slave trade. This screening is part of the long 18th century reading group and its focus this quarter on the abolition of the slave trade; this movie raises many questions about abolition, sentimentality and politics, and telling stories of slavery, and it should make for interesting discussion.

If you plan to attend, please rsvp to Maggie Sloan so that we have a head count for snacks!

EMC Brown Bag Lunch | William Carroll | January 18, 2008
“The Tragedy of Genealogy: Shakespearean Drama, 1595-1605”
William Carroll (English, Boston University)
South Hall 2635, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM

Join us for an informal Brown Bag Lunch with visiting scholar William Carroll (English, Boston University) who will be in Santa Barbara in January as part of a fellowship year.

For information about Professor Carroll’s extensive publications, which include his important book Fat King, Lean Beggar: Representations of Poverty in the Age of Shakespeare (1996) please visit his homepage.

EMC Brown Bag LunchChristina Cheng, Liberty Stanavage, & Summer Star | February 1, 2008
South Hall 2635, 12 PM – 1:30 PM

Presenting work in progress by:

Christina Cheng (Comparative Literature), “Causes of the Plague in Daniel Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Year: The Devil’s Work, God’s Design, or Natural Origin”
Liberty Stanavage (English), “Englishing Medea: Gender, Marriage and Elizabethan Anxieties in John Studley’s Medea
Summer Star (English), “Anger and the Principle of Moral Regeneration in Mansfield Park

Please support these graduate students by coming to the brown bag to enjoy and discuss their presentations!

If you would like to present a paper at this event, please contact Jessica Murphy.

Matthew Landrus Lecture | February 4, 2008
“Leonardo da Vinci: The Process of Invention”
Matthew Landrus (Rhode Island School of Design)
Engineering Science Building 2001, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM

Reknowned da Vinci scholar Matthew Landrus (Rhode Island School of Design) will deliver a lecture entitled “Leonardo da Vinci: The Process of Invention.”

Raymond G. Siemens Seminar | February 8, 2008
“Drawing Networks in the Devonshire MS (BL Add Ms 17492)”
South Hall 2635, 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Please join us for a seminar on electronic editing and early modern texts with Raymond G. Siemens (English, University of Victoria). The event will feature a presentation on research currently conducted by Professor Siemens and a group of scholars at the University of Victoria, followed by an open forum for discussion of the issues the paper and presentation have raised.

Based on work carried out by Ray Siemens, Johanne Paquette, and the ETCL group, work discussed in this presentation has its roots in the way in which physical and authorial space interact in manuscript miscellanies and the difficulties associated with conveying such representation, traditionally and otherwise. Especially, we will discuss the result of our experimentation in the conveyance of such information in the course of our exploring exchanges within the Devonshire MS (BL Add Ms 17492).

Ray Siemens is Professor of English and Canada Research Chair in Humanities Computing at the University of Victoria. He is President (English) of the Society for Digital Humanities Société pour l’étude des médias interactifs, Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Computing in the Humanities at King’s College London, and Visiting Research Professor Sheffield Hallam University. Director of the Digital Humanities Summer Institute, and founding editor of the electronic scholarly journal Early Modern Literary Studies, he is also author of works chiefly focusing on areas where literary studies and computational methods intersect, is editor of several Renaissance texts, is series co-editor of Topics in the Digital Humanities (U Illinois P) and is co-editor of several book collections on humanities computing topics, among them the Blackwell Companion to Digital Humanities (2004) and Mind Technologies (U Calgary P, 2006).

Work-in-Progress | Anita Guerrini | February 15, 2008
South Hall 2635, 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM

Please join us for an informal meeting to discuss a draft chapter of Professor Guerrini’s current book project on “the animal projects of the early Paris Academy of Science and the King’s Garden in the context of 17th century Paris.” For more information on Professor Guerrini’s current research projects, please visit her webpage.

Peter Lake Lecture | February 27, 2008
“Buckingham Does the Globe: Shakespeare’s Henry VIII and the Origins of the Personal Rule of Charles I”
Peter Lake (Princeton University)
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020), 5:15 PM

Peter Lake  is the author of such recent books as The Anti-Christ’s Lewd Hat: Protestants, Papists and Players in Post-Reformation England and The Boxmaker’s Revenge: ‘Orthodoxy,”Heterodoxy,’ and the Politics of the Parish in Early Stuart London. For more information including his current projects, please refer to his homepage.

David Bindman Lecture | March 6, 2008
“Mind-Forged Manacles: William Blake and Slavery.”
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020), 5:00 PM

Whether in his illustrations to John Gabriel Steadman’s Narrative of a Five Year Expedition against the Revolted Negroes of Surinam (1796) or his illustrated prophetic books, slavery figures powerfully in the art of William Blake. Slavery’s physical horror found expression in many of Blake’s most moving images, and in his hands it became a vivid metaphor for the oppression and redemption of the human spirit.

David Bindman retired last year as Durning-Lawrence Professor of the History of Art at University College London. He received his BA in Modern History from Oxford University in 1962, and then spent a year as Knox Fellow at Harvard, where he was attached to the Fogg Museum. He took his PhD with a thesis on the Art of William Blake at the Courtauld Institute. His research has been largely on British art with books on Blake, Hogarth, and the sculptor Roubiliac, and he has curated a number of exhibitions, including The Shadow of the Guillotine: Britain and the French Revolution at the British Museum in 1989. In recent years, he has been interested in the representation of non-Europeans in western art: in 2002 he published Ape to Apollo: Aesthetics and the Idea of Race, 1700-1800 (Cornell University Press), and he is in the process of finishing the 18th century volume of the series The Image of the Black in Western Art for the Menil Foundation and the Du Bois Institute. He has held fellowships at the Yale Center for British Art, the Getty Institute in Los Angeles, and the Center for the Advanced Study of the Visual Arts at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. Next fall, he will be running an institute at Dartmouth College with Professor Angela Rosenthal on “Visual Humor in Race, Nationality and Ethnicity.”

Co-sponsored by the History of Art and Architecture, The Early Modern Center, IHC, and Black Studies.

UCSB Eighteenth Century Reading Group, Winter Meeting | March 7, 2008
Early Modern Center (South Hall 2510), 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM

You are cordially invited to join the UCSB Eighteenth Century Reading Group in a discussion of selections from Michael McKeon’s book The Secret History of Domesticity. We will focus on the introduction as well as chapters 4 and 7, though you are very welcome to read more broadly. The selections have been posted on ERes; please email Sören Hammerschmidt for the required ERes password.

Robert Davis Seminar & Lectures | April 14-15, 2008
Robert Davis (History, Ohio State University)

Professor Robert Davis will be participating in three events on UCSB campus:

Class Lecture | April 14, 2008
Bren 1414, 2:00 PM
Prof. Davis will lecture in Carole Paul’s undergraduate class on The Grand Tour.

Seminar | April 15, 2008
“Counting slaves in the Early-modern Mediterranean.”
IHC Seminar Room 6056, 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Prof. Davis will present a chapter of his new research project entitled “Counting slaves in the Early-modern Mediterranean.” The chapter will be distributed in advance to all those who will request it; please contact Claudio Fogu in the Department of French and Italian (cfogu@french-ital.ucsb.edu). A cold lunch will also be served.

Lecture | April 15, 2008
“The Celebration of Slavery in the Christian-Muslim World.”
McCune Conference Room (HSSB 6020), 3:30 PM
Prof. Davis will give his talk on “The Celebration of Slavery in the Christian-Muslim World.” Refreshments will be served around 5:30.

Robert Davis is professor of Italian Renaissance and Early-modern Mediterranean history. He has researched and published on Italian – and especially Venetian – society and popular culture during the sixteenth through eighteenth centuries. He is the author of Shipbuilders of the Venetian Arsenal (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UP, 1991), The War of the Fists (New York: Oxford UP, 1994), and Christian Slaves, Muslim Masters (London: Palgrave UP, 2003); and co-author of the forthcoming Venice, Tourist Maze (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004). He has also contributed to and co-edited two collected volumes on Italian Renaissance topics: (with Judith C. Brown) Gender and Society in Renaissance Italy (Harlow, UK: Longman, 1998); and (with Benjamin Ravid) The Jews of Early Modern Venice (Baltimore, Johns Hopkins UP, 2001). His current research deals with brigand unrest in central Italy during the late sixteenth century.

Work-in-Progress | Elizabeth Heckendorn Cook | May 16, 2008
“Arboreal Values”
South Hall 1415, 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Please join us for Elizabeth Heckendorn Cook’s presentation of a part of her current research on “Arboreal Values” in an informal lecture, followed by a Q&A period. For more information on Professor Cook’s current research, please visit her website.

Arnhold Lecture | Giles Bergel | May 16, 2008
“What was The Wandering Jew’s Chronicle? Reflections on the History of the Book in the Age of Digital Reproduction.”
South Hall 2635, 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Giles Bergel, the current Arnhold Postdoctoral Fellow in Early Modern Literature and Media Technology, will present the final lecture of his tenure at this event, entitled: “What was The Wandering Jew’s Chronicle? Reflections on the History of the Book in the Age of Digital Reproduction.” The lecture will be followed by a reception to celebrate Giles’s work at UCSB and congratulate him on his move to other, equally green pastures.

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