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The Center for Medieval Studies and its members are actively involved in a series of Research Workshops created as part of (and funded by) the Mellon Grant in support of the Consortium for the Study of the Premodern World. These workshops—a signature feature of Medieval Studies at UMN—provide unique opportunities for their participants and visiting guests to explore theories and topics that explore the limits and nature of the history and material culture of the premodern, global world.

  • These faculty and graduate student-led initiatives involve scholars at the UMN as well as partners at local, national, and international institutions.
  • Research workshops address intellectual questions regarding global premodern studies and model collaboration across disciplines, chronologies, and geologies.
  • Activities range from reading groups and works-in-progress seminars to seminars with local or external visitors and public symposia and academic conferences.

Current 2016-2017 Workshops

Digital Premodern Workshop

Organized by Marguerite Ragnow, Curator of the James Ford Bell Library. The Digital Premodern Workshop integrates premodern intellectual exploration with work in the digital humanities and social sciences.

Global Folklore

Organized by Andrew Scheil and Ali Zimmerman. This research workshop provides a forum for the reading, research, and analysis of folklore from a global, multicultural, comparative perspective.

Reception of Classical Texts in the Medieval and Early Modern World

Organized by Andrew Scheil and Asa Olsen. This research workshop will provide a reading, discussion, and research forum for the reception of Greek and Roman texts in medieval and early modern western Europe to 1800.

Research Collaborative on the Mediterranean, North Africa, and the Middle East

Organized by John Watkins. This workshop is a continuation of the UMN’s existing Mediterranean Collaborative, which works on a broad spectrum of Mediterranean issues that reflect the new emphases in the field of Mediterranean Studies.

Teaching the Premodern

Organized by Loren Cowdery. This workshop will help graduate students prepare to offer and teach innovative courses on the premodern world.

The Graduate Research Workshop for the Study of Premodern Archaeology

Organized by Erin Crowley and Brooke Creager. This workshop brings together students from the Anthropology, History, Art History, and Classical and Near Eastern Studies Departments to explore themes in archaeology of the ancient world.

Tolerance and Polemics in Medieval Iberia

Organized by Mario Cossío Olavide and Robert Hultgren. This research workshop explores how premodern Iberia and the Mediterranean can (and cannot) serve as a model of tolerance and conflict among groups of different confessional, ethnic, and linguistic identities.

Visual Culture of the Persianate World

Catherine Asher, Matt Canepa, and Sugata Ray. This workshop aims to think collectively about the visual, material and discursive means of the expansion, development and circulation of Persianate culture.

Words and Music Across Time and Space: Interdisciplinary Collaboration & Performance

Marguerite Ragnow. In conjunction with early music group ¡Sacabuche!, this workshop will perform “Venetia 1500,” a multimedia piece inspired by 16th­- and 17th­-century scholarship, music, and visual art.