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Call for papers: Invenīre: Discovery & Innovation in Pre-Modern Scandinavia

  • University of California, Berkeley (map)

Call for Papers

ScandGrads, the graduate organization affiliated with the Department of Scandinavian at the University of California, Berkeley, is proud to announce its third annual interdisciplinary graduate student conference.

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“Invention” resonates in our modern world as a creative process. The term’s Latin root invenīre, however, speaks to a medieval and early modern past that conceived of innovation as an unearthing of the past. At the heart of these multiple understandings of invention is a sense of re-discovery through which ideas and materials manifest themselves in the human world.

This conference aims to explore inventions as both process and product in Scandinavia before 1800. Broadly defined, these conceptions may include technological advancements, the navigation of global landscapes, cartography and spatial knowledge, economic networks, religious and political thought, history of the book, the reception of architectural and artistic modes, and cosmology. These nuances of invention raise questions regarding the nature of knowledge production, the construction and dissemination of ideas, communications, interactions, and exchanges, and human-nonhuman entanglements in the pre-modern world. Also inherent in this discussion is the capacity of language to communicate or manipulate ideas as a point of tension as much in the pre-modern world as in historical practice today.

We invite papers from, but not limited to, literature, history, theology, linguistics, art history, economics, archaeology, and legal history, as well as interdisciplinary approaches, from graduate students and early career researcher. All interested applicants are encouraged to submit an abstract of 200 words to the organizing committee at by September 15, 2018.