Call for Papers – Angelical Conjunctions: Crossroads of Medicine and Religion, 1200-1800

McGill University on April 13-15, 2019

“Angelical Conjunction” was the term coined by the seventeenth-century New England Puritan Cotton Mather to denote the mutual affinity of medicine and religion. Indeed, medical and spiritual practices have a long history of coexistence in many religious traditions. This connection took many forms, from the pious provision of health care (in person or through endowed charity), to the archetypal figure of the healing prophet. Yet despite decades of specialized research, a coherent and analytical history of the “angelical conjunction” itself remains elusive.   This conference therefore aims to explore the connection between medicine and religion across the time-span of the late medieval and early modern eras, and  from an intercultural perspective. Taking as our focus the Mediterranean, the Islamic World and Europe, and the various Christianities, Islams and Judaisms that flourished there, we aim to develop methodological and theoretical perspectives on the “angelical conjunction(s)” of these two spheres. How did the entanglement of religion and medicine shape epistemologies in both of these spheres? What are the conceptions of the body and its relationship to the soul that these entanglements assumed or envisioned? What were the limits to coexistence? How did the “conjunction” change over time?

We invite papers on a range of themes that include, but are not limited to:

–         The relationship between spiritual charisma and medical practice
–         The involvement of medical practitioners in theological debates
–         Medicine and “fringe” religious traditions (e.g. Hermetic, heretical, “occult”…)
–         Representations of the healer-prophet or healer-saint in art
–         Debates on body and soul informed by medical and theological knowledge
–         Spiritualization of physical illness
–         Devotion as therapy, and (the provision of) therapy as devotion

Accommodation and meals will be provided. We are seeking grant support to subsidize travel.

Please submit an abstract of 300 words and a CV to Dr. Aslıhan Gürbüzel at angelicalconjunctions@gmail.com by January 10, 2018.

More info on

CFP – Canadian Society for the History of Medicine (CSHM) 2018 / Société canadienne d’histoire de la médecine 2018 – May 26-28, University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

Call for Papers: Canadian Society for the History of Medicine (CSHM) 2018

Call for Papers Canadian Society for the History of Medicine (CSHM) 2018 – Deadline 8 December 2017
May 26-28, University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

The CSHM will hold its annual meeting and conference on May 26-28 at the University of Regina, in conjunction with the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. The Programme Committee calls for papers that address the theme of this year’s Congress: “Gathering Diversities.”

Scholars are invited to give papers related to diversity in the history of medicine, health and healing; or that address historical experiences of patient diversity and equity (gender, race, sexuality, ability). Proposals on topics unrelated to the Congress theme are also welcome.

Please submit an abstract and one-page CV for consideration by 20 November 2017 by e-mail to Esyllt Jones, esyllt.jones@umanitoba.ca. Abstracts must not exceed 350 words. We encourage proposals for organised panels of three (3) related papers; in this case, please submit a panel proposal of less than 350 words in addition to an abstract and one-page CV from each presenter. The Committee will notify applicants of its decision by December 15, 2017. Those who accept an invitation to present at the meeting agree to provide French and English versions of the accepted abstract for inclusion in the bilingual Program Book.


Appel de présentations, Société canadienne d’histoire de la médecine (SCHM) 2018 –APPEL A CONTRIBUTION JUSQU’AU 8 DÉCEMBRE
Le 26-28 mai, Université de Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

La SCHM tiendra son congrès annuel le 26-28 mai à l’Université de Regina, dans le cadre du Congrès des sciences humaines. Le comité du programme fait un appel de présentations sur le thème du congrès cette année : « Rassembler les diversités ».

Les chercheurs sont invités à offrir une présentation se rapportant à la diversité dans l’histoire de la médecine, de la santé et de la guérison, ou qui considère des exemples historiques de diversité et d’équité chez les patients (sexe, race, sexualité, capacité). Les présentations sur des thèmes sans rapport avec le thème du Congrès sont également les bienvenues.

Veuillez envoyer un résumé et un CV d’une page pour examen avant le 20 novembre 2017 par courriel à Esyllt Jones, esyllt.jones@umanitoba.ca. Les résumés ne doivent pas dépasser 350 mots. Nous encourageons les propositions de présentations en groupes de trois (3) documents connexes; pour ces cas, veuillez soumettre une proposition de table ronde de moins de 350 mots en plus d’un résumé et d’un CV d’une page pour chaque présentateur. Le Comité avisera les demandeurs de sa décision d’ici le 15 décembre 2017. Ceux qui acceptent l’invitation à présenter au congrès s’engagent à fournir des versions française et anglaise du résumé qu’ils ont soumis pour l’inclusion dans le programme bilingue du congrès.

Plus d’info sur le site des organisateurs.

CFP – Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Healing Charms and Medicine Harvard University, April 6-8, 2018

Charms (understood as ritual means of addressing situations of sickness, stress, and anxiety by way of a combination of special language and special actions) are universal across human societies. Early manuscripts in Latin and various vernacular languages contain several examples of healing charms that blur the lines between magic and science. Medical thinking informs literary production worldwide, from its ancient beginnings to modern times. In the present day, people routinely consult specialists in naturopathy, Ayurveda, and traditional Chinese medicine alongside, or in preference to, modern, scientific medicine.

Not only does the study of healing charms and other medical beliefs and practices have the potential to yield insight into traditional and historical systems of knowledge, but such study often has major implications for modern medicine. Charms can lead to the development of new medication and procedures, as when researchers from the University of Nottingham discovered that a charm from the 9th century Anglo Saxon manuscript “Bald’s Leechbook” proved effective in eradicating strains of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Pharmaceutical companies spend significant amount of money on researching the traditional pharmocopiae of indigenous cultures across the planet in order to develop new drugs.

Because of the broad nature of this topic, this conference aims to bring together researchers whose work spans a broad range of areas, time periods, and disciplinary approaches. The nature of this conference brings together the study of medicine, science, and religion, thereby bridging gaps between disciplines and uncovering connections between the traditions of various cultures.

 

The Department of Celtic Languages and Literatures, Harvard University, with support from the Committee for the Provostial Fund for the Arts and Humanities, is proud to host “Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Study of Healing Charms and Medicine,” an interdisciplinary conference to be held at Harvard University from April 6-8, 2018, which aims to present innovative and cross-disciplinary approaches to the study of healing charms and medicine across a wide range of cultures and geographic areas, from antiquity up to the modern period.

Keynote speakers will be Dr. Jacqueline Borsje (University of Amsterdam) and Prof. Richard Kieckhefer (Northwestern University).

We invite proposals for papers on any aspect of the study of healing charms and traditional medicine, in any time period or location, from any disciplinary approach, including, but not limited to, folklore, history of science, medieval studies, religious studies, medicine, and anthropology.

Papers should be 20 minutes long, with a 10 minute period following the paper for questions. Proposals should include a title, an abstract of 200-300 words, and a short speaker biography, and should be sent to hcm@fas.harvard.edu. Please send submissions either in the body of the email or as an attached word document.

Abstracts due Tuesday October 25th, 2017

 

Mor info on the conference website.

Conference – ‘Why is my pain perpetual?’ (Jer 15:18): Chronic Pain in the Middle Ages at UCL -29th september

‘Why is my pain perpetual?’ (Jer 15:18): Chronic Pain in the Middle Ages

 

Début : Sep 29, 2017 09:00 AM
Fin : Sep 29, 2017 07:00 PM

Emplacement IAS Common Ground, Ground Floor, South Wing, Wilkins Building

 

Pain is a universal human experience. We have all hurt at some point, felt that inescapable sensory challenge to our physical equanimity, our health and well-being compromised. Typically, our agonies are fleeting. For some, however, suffering becomes an artefact of everyday living: our pain becomes ‘chronic’. Chronic pain is persistent, usually lasting for three months or more, does not respond well to analgesia, and does not improve after the usual healing period of any injury.

Following Elaine Scarry’s (1985) seminal work The Body in Pain, researchers from various humanities disciplines have productively studied pain as a physical phenomenon with wide-ranging emotional and socio-cultural effects. Medievalists have also analysed acute pain, elucidating a specifically medieval construction of physical distress. In almost all such scholarship – modern and medieval – chronic pain has been overlooked.

The new field of medieval disability studies has also neglected chronic pain as a primary object of study. Instead, disability scholars in the main focus on ‘visible’ and ‘mainstream’ disabilities, such as blindness, paralysis, and birth defects. Indeed, disability historian Beth Linker argued in 2013 that ‘[m]ore historical attention should be paid to the unhealthy disabled’, including those in chronic pain (‘On the Borderland’, 526). This conference seeks specifically to pay ‘historical attention’ to chronic pain in the medieval era. It brings together researchers from across disciplines working on chronic pain, functioning as a collaborative space for medievalists to enter into much-needed conversations on this highly overlooked area of scholarship.

Relevant topics for this conference include:

-Medieval conceptions and theories of chronic pain, as witnessed by scientific, medical, and theological works
-Paradigms of chronic pain developed in modern scholarship – and what medievalists can learn from, and contribute to, them -Comparative analyses of chronic pain in religious versus secular narratives -Recognition or rejection of chronic pain as an affirmative subjective identity -Chronic pain and/as disability -The potential share-ability of pain in medieval narratives, such as texts which show an individual taking on the pain of another -The relationship between affect and the severity, understanding, and experience of pain -The manner in which gender impacts the experience, expression, and management of an individual’s chronic pain

Keynote address:

Prof Esther Cohen (Hebrew University of Jerusalem), one of the foremost scholars on pain in the Middle Ages, will deliver the keynote address: ‘What is Chronic Pain in a Non-Neural Age? Working Definitions, Sources, and Methodologies’.

Confirmed speakers:

-Dr Katherine Harvey (Birkbeck, University of London, UK), ‘Chronic Pain and the Saintly Bishop in Medieval England’
-Dr James McKinstry (Durham University, UK), ‘Headaches, Diseases, and Old Age: William Dunbar’s Diagnosis of Chronic Pain’
-Dr Michele Moatt (National Trust and Lancaster University, UK), ‘Chronic Pain and Prophecy in the Twelfth-century Life of Aelred of Rievaulx
-Catherine Coffey (Queen’s University, Belfast, Northern Ireland), ‘“Mit zwoelf tugenden stritet si wider das vleisch”: The Body Fighting the Flesh in Mechthild von Magdeburg’s Das fließende Licht der Gottheit
-Katherine Briant (Fordham University, New York, USA), ‘Pain as a Theological Framework in Julian of Norwich’s Vision and Revelation
-Dr Nicole Nyffenegger (Bern University, Switzerland), ‘Mary’s Perpetual Physical Pain: Affective Piety and “Doubling”’
-Prof Wendy J Turner (Augusta University, Georgia, USA), ‘Mental Complications of Pain: Age and Violence in Medieval England’
-Dr Bianca Frohne (University of Bremen, Germany), ‘Living With Pain: Constructions of a Corporeal Experience in Early and High Medieval Miracle Accounts’
-Dr William Maclehose (University College London, UK), ‘A Locus for Healing: Saints’ Shrines and Representations of Chronic Pain’

Bursaries for attendance:

This conference is generously supported by the Society for the Social History of Medicine. As such, members of the Society for the Social History of Medicine may apply for bursaries to facilitate attendance. We encourage all eligible parties to apply. Please see here for full details.

SSHM Logo

Registration:

-Please register here.
-The conference registration fee is £20. The fee is waived completely for concessions (students, the unwaged, retired scholars), though all attendees must register for the conference.
-The registration fee covers refreshments throughout the day for attendees, including tea and coffee at breaks, a sandwich lunch, and a wine reception. If you have any dietary requirements, please list these when you confirm your attendance.
Registration closes on 1st August 2017.

How to get to the conference:

-For details as to how to get to UCL on public transport, please see here.
-Please enter UCL through the gates at the Front Lodges on Gower Street (marked by the big red pin in the map below). This entrance offers the most direct route to the workshop location.
-The workshop takes place in the Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS), University College London, UK. We will be in the room Common Ground which is on the Ground Floor of the South Wing in the Wilkins Building. There is a variety of seating types available for attendees in this room. We will also have a QuietRoom (the Council Room G12) available for attendees to rest and take a break, located directly opposite Common Ground.
-Please follow the route as shown in the map below to reach Common Ground from the Front Lodges. This route is wheelchair accessible.
-To consult the disabledgo.com Access Guide for the Wilkins Building, please see here. Accessible bathroom facilities are available directly next to Common Ground, and also on the Lower Ground floor (by lift).

Common Ground Map

If you have any queries, including access requirements, please do not hesitate to contact the organiser, Alicia Spencer-Hall (a.spencer-hall [at] ucl.ac.uk).

This conference contributes to the ‘Sense and Sensation’ research strand at UCL’s Institute of Advanced Studies. This strand also comprises a Reading Group focused on chronic pain. To join the Reading Group, please email the organiser, Alicia Spencer-Hall (a.spencer-hall [at] ucl.ac.uk).

More info on the UCL website.