Conversations Across the Humanities

Structured discussions of issues and themes of interest to faculty, postdocs, and students across the humanities and humanistic social sciences.

All are welcome to listen, learn, and converse.

All sessions take place in Doheny Memorial Library (DML) Room 241 | Academy for Polymathic Study

Statecraft in East Asia: A Conference of Storytellers

February 10 – 13, 2017

Twenty-five world-class scholars from Canada, the US, China, Korea, Taiwan, and Japan will come together to engage in an interdisciplinary and comparative study of Buddhist statecraft, which will include historians, anthropologists, textual scholars, and art historians. Through the medium of storytelling, the paper presenters will explore how Buddhism has been an important means of securing imperial legitimation and political power, as well as an effective partner in the running of a state, since its arrival in China in the third century of the Common Era and subsequent spread to the rest of East Asia. As such, the conference will also illuminate the role that Chinese culture has played in the development of East Asian political and religious systems in general.

For additional info and registration, please contact Stephanie Balkwill.


Ideas in History

March 24, 2017, 10 am to noon

Presentations by local faculty:

Prof. David Albertson (Religion)

Prof. Rebecca Lemon (English)

Moderator: Professor Thomas Habinek (Classics)

To be Announced

Will be rescheduled: Engaging New Audiences

Presentations by postdoctoral scholars:

Rhae Lynn Barnes (American Studies and Ethnicities)

Bonnie Ruberg (Cinematic Arts)

Jennifer Wells (Early Modern Studies Institute)

Jessica Wright (Classics)

Moderator: Professor Laura Isabel Serna (Cinema and Media Studies)

April 14, 2017 | Postdocs’ Pick

May 5, 2017 | Faculty Fellows’ Pick

The Culture of Empire

September 16, 2016, 10 am – noon

Presentations by postdoctoral scholars:

Asheesh Siddique (History)

Emily Wang (Slavic Languages and Literatures)

Moderator: Professor Tom Seifrid (Slavic Languages and Literatures)

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Interpreting Religion for Others

What can we say (and not say) about the religious experience of other people? What particular epistemological problems do we face when we (as academics, not as academics) talk about religious experience, especially the religious experience of others? How do different institutional and departmental contexts inform what we are able to say? What resources do we have, and what strategies can we develop, to overcome these challenges?

Friday, October 21, 2016, 10 am – noon

Presentations by postdoctoral scholars:

Stephanie Balkwill (Religion)

Jessica Wright (Classics)

Moderator: Professor Lisa Bitel (Religion and History)

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Epistemological Thresholds

Friday, November 18, 2016, 10 am – noon

Presentations by postdoctoral scholars:

John Blakinger (Art History)

Peter Collopy (History and Digital Humanities)

Leif Hancox-Li (Philosophy)

Moderator: Professor Mark Schroeder (Philosophy)

Art and Affect

January 27, 10 am – Noon at DML 233 Intellectual Commons

Presentations by postdoctoral scholars:

Rhae Lynn Barnes (American Studies and Ethnicities)

Allan Doyle (Visual Studies Research Institute)

Ronald Mendoza-de Jesús (Spanish and Portuguese)

Moderator: Professor Vittoria di Palma (School of Architecture)