5 Aug 2015: Martin McLaughlin has been elected President of the Modern Humanities Research Association (MHRA) for 2015. Each year, the MHRA chooses as President a scholar of international repute. Professor McLaughlin’s Presidential Address, entitled ‘Rewriting in the Italian Literary Tradition: Dante to Calvino (but not everything in between)’, will be delivered as a keynote lecture at the MHRA annual conference: this year’s conference is entitled ‘Rewriting(s)’ and will be held on Friday 16 October 2015 at the Senate House, London. More information is available here and here.
25 Jun 2015: PhD candidate Diego Rubio has won the 2015 Award from the BritishSpanish Society for his substantial contribution to our understanding of the Early Modern Political Thought and the cultural history of Britain and Spain.
The Awards Ceremony was hosted by the Ambassador of Spain to the United Kingdom at his residence in London in May 2015. Mr Rubio gave a speech on the value of the Humanities and the importance of scholarships to ensure equal access to higher education.
The BritishSpanish Society is a registered charity and a non-political organisation which aims to promote friendship and understanding between the people of Britain and Spain through knowledge of their respective customs, institutions, history and way of life. Thanks to the generous support of corporate and institutional sponsors, the Society runs an annual scholarship programme for postgraduate students. The scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic merit to British and Spanish students to enable them pursue postgraduate studies and, in the process, foster British-Spanish understanding between individuals and institutions.
23 Jun 2015:Dr Daron Burrows has secured a research funding award from the Bodleian Library’s Digital Manuscripts Toolkit initiative (funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation) for his project The Apocalypse in Oxford: Anglo-Norman Apocalypse Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library. This project involves the digitisation of five richly illustrated English manuscripts of the French Prose Apocalypse, a thirteenth-century translation of the Revelation of St John accompanied by a lengthy moralising commentary which sheds important light on ways in which the Apocalypse was imagined and interpreted in the Middle Ages. Combining textual transcription and image analysis, the project marks an important step towards Daron’s eventual goal of producing the first critical edition and study of the transmission of this fascinating text.
17 Jun 2015: ‘Sparagmos’, ancient Greek for ‘dismemberment’, seems an unlikely title for a performance which took place in Exeter College Chapel. Nevertheless, as the theme of both Euripides’ ‘The Bacchae’ and Poliziano’s ‘Orpheus’, which I paired as a double-bill for the Turl Street Arts Festival in February 2015, the title could not have been more appropriate. Rendered into vibrant, modern English by Dr David Maskell, supported by a team of forty talented performers and with specially composed music by Ben van Leeuwen, Balliol’s Senior Organ Scholar, the plays met with resounding success.
Part of my aim in directing this production was to introduce classical theatre to young people. As well as implementing a special student rate of £1.50 per play, we took ‘The Bacchae’ to Oxford’s Cheney School, where we performed in front of around a hundred secondary school students. For feedback on this initiative and more information regarding my objectives, see the following links:
20 Feb 2015: Colleagues will be delighted to know that Professor Patrick McGuinness was last night awarded the Duff Cooper Prize for his latest novel, Other People’s Countries, a Journey into Memory (Jonathan Cape). The award was made at a reception at the French Ambassador’s Residence, sponsored by Pol Roger. The prestigious literary prize was founded following Duff Cooper’s death in 1954, to “celebrate the best in non-fiction writing”, and recent winners have included Lucy Hughes-Hallett (on D’Annunzio), Sue Prideaux (on Strindberg), Sarah Bakewell (on Montaigne), Robert Service (on Trotsky) and Graham Robb (Discovery of France).
The multi-media edition of Rameau’s Nephew, (translated by Faculty members, Kate Tunstall and Caroline Warman) has just won the 2015 British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies Digital Prize. With over a hundred illustrations and embedded musical clips, it can be read in paper or online versions, and also be downloaded. The online version can be read for free.
Professor Valerie Worth-Stylianou’s recent book, Pregnancy and Birth in Early Modern France: Treatises by Caring Physicians and Surgeons (1581-1625), has been awarded the Society for the Study of Early Modern Women (SSEMW)’s 2013 prize for the Best Teaching Edition in the field of gender and women’s studies. Details.
We are delighted to announce that Henrike Lähnemann, currently Chair in German Studies at the University of Newcastle, will be joining us as the Chair of Medieval German. This is one of the eight statutory chairs of the Faculty for Medieval and Modern Languages — and the first to be taken up in German by a woman in the 150 years of history of Modern Languages at Oxford. Her predecessors are Peter Ganz, the famous medievalist and editor, among other texts, of the Tristan by Gottfried of Straßburg, and Nigel F. Palmer, one of the best known academic British figures in German medieval Studies. She will start her new job on 1 January 2015.