Conveners: Marian Coman (University of Bucharest) and Ionuț Epurescu-Pascovici (New Europe College).
This research working group is intended as a venue for historians, social scientists, and philosophers interested in discussing recent developments in the study of medieval Europe. Comparisons between Latin Europe, Byzantium and Islam, and between late antiquity, the Middle Ages, and the early modern period are encouraged. The research group is not limited to medievalists but open to colleagues in other fields.
Fortnightly meetings include roundtable discussions of recent scholarship, readings of primary sources, methodological seminars and presentations of work in progress. Readings are provided in advance. Working languages are Romanian and English.
Each academic year is dedicated to a general theme.
The theme for 2016/2017 is From Lordship to State.
It is increasingly clear that the earlier grand narrative of straightforward continuity between medieval institutional reforms and the birth of the modern state needs to be complicated in significant ways, but a nuanced understanding of the medieval institutions and practices remains essential for placing European political modernity in historical perspective. This year’s theme, From Lordship to State, charts both the diversity of medieval political forms and, more specifically, the trajectory of medieval polities from the seigneuries of the post-Carolingian era to the centralized kingdoms of the later Middle Ages.
The seminar meets on alternate Mondays from 17.00 at IRH-ICUB, 1 Dimitrie Brândză St.
Contact: Marian Coman – commarian(at)gmail.com
An informal or ‘get-together’ meeting will take place on 10 October at 17.00.
17 October – Medieval history, modern theory (roundtable discussion)
Ph. Buc, Dangers of Ritual (2001): Introduction and chapters 3, 5, 6, and 7 (pp. 1-13, 88-123,159-263).
31 October – Beyond ‘feudalism’: the alternatives (roundtable discussion)
- Brown, ‘The tyranny of a construct’, Am. Hist. Rev. 79 (1974);
- Reynolds, Fiefs and Vassals (1994), chapters 1-3, 6.5-6.12, and 7 (pp. 1-75, 199-323);
- Cheyette, review of Fiefs and Vassals, Speculum 71;
Feudalism, ed. S. Bagge et al. (2011), the chapters by S. Reynolds and H. Debax (pp. 15-27 and 77-101).
14 November – Lords and fiefs: the documentary record (sources seminar)
Conventum between William V of Aquitaine and Hugh of Lusignan;
Galbert of Bruges, De multro, traditione et occisione, ed. J. Rider (1994), chapters 7-10, 31, 47, 51, 55-56;
Actes de la famille Porcelet d’Arles, ed. M. Aurell (2001), documents nos. 73, 89, 119, 155,172, 363, 611, 623.
28 November – A medieval lordship: Picquigny (I. Epurescu-Pascovici, working paper)
12 December – A ‘feudal’ mutation in 15th-century Wallachia? (M. Coman, work in progress talk)
9 January TBA
Centre and periphery in medieval Europe (roundtable discussion)
- Bartlett, The Making of Europe (1993);
- Berend, At the Gate of Christendom (2006).
The twelfth century: birth of the modern state? (roundtable discussion)
Th. Bisson, The Crisis of the Twelfth Century (2008);
- Reynolds, ‘Government and community, 1024-1204’, NCMH vol. 4 (2004).
Beginnings of the bureaucratic state: The Dialogue of the Exchequer (sources seminar)
Dialogus de Scaccario, ed. E. Amt and S. D. Church (2008).
Accountability: medieval to modern (roundtable discussion)
- Murray, Reason and Society (1978);
- Sabapathy, Officers and Accountability (2014);
- Soll, The Reckoning (2014).
Reading the Savoyard computi (I. Epurescu-Pascovici, methodological seminar)
The late-medieval advances in government (roundtable discussion)
- Watts, The making of Polities (2009);
Cl. Gauvard, De grace especial (1991).
New norms and old habits: judicial practices in 16th-century Wallachia (M. Coman,
Renaissance state and society (sources seminar)