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CML Workshop. Shared Worlds

Workshop on 27-29 May in Copenhagen co-organized between the Centre for Medieval Literature and The David Collection.

The CML is continuing its collaboration with the David Collection (Copenhagen). After a workshop in 2017 on ascension narratives of the prophet Muhammad, a workshop in May 2019 will involve researchers from various institutions and specializations in discussing what a literary history, viewed through the holdings of the David Collection, could look like.

The aim of this workshop is to explore the transmission of literary culture across the translation centres and courts found all along the routes of the Silk Roads, reaching into the Medieval Mediterranean and the vernacular literatures of North, West and Eastern Europe, in order to set the foundations for a more ambitious history of medieval literatures. As of yet, we still lack a methodological framework from which to approach the variegated dynamics governing the transformation and translocation of narratives and literary forms in time and space. It should be noted that it is during the Middle Ages that we first start to witness directly and traceable literary interaction across regions, languages and cultures far apart. As such, it is imperative for us to work across a continuous Afro-Eurasian space, setting Europe in dialogue—both diachronically and synchronically—with the Central Asia and North Africa, and to address explicitly its peripheral position in a wider global context.

Contact: Christian Høgel,; event not open for registration

Image: Miniature from a copy of Kitab al-hashaish, an Arabic translation of Dioscorides’s De Materia Medica (The David Collection)


Monday May 27, The David Collection

10:00-10:30. Welcome and Introduction

Kjeld von Folsach (Director: David Collection)

Shazia Jagot (University of Surrey)

10:30-12:30 Session 1: Travelling Stories

Suzanne Conklin Akbari (University of Toronto) ‘Sacred Space and Alexander’s Mirror in Amir Khusraw Dihlawi’s A’inah-yi Iskandari

Cameron Cross (University of Michigan) ‘Grammars of Globality’

Christian Høgel (University of Southern Denmark) ‘The Narrativization of Knowledge: Imagining the Image’

12:30-13:30 Lunch (provided by the David Collection)

13:30-15:30 Session 2: Travelling Science

Nir Shafir (University of California San Diego), ‘Images and Objects of Medieval Islamic Science: Automata, Door Knockers, and more between the Middle East and the Globe’

Sonja Brentjes (Courtauld Institute of Art), ‘Between Sphinx, Kentaur, Sagittarius and the Eclipse Dragon: did the painter forget bow and arrow or did he fuse different eastern and western elements of mythical beings from Heaven and Earth?’

Sussan Babaie (Courtauld Institute of Art), ‘Speaking of food: a Safavid ceramic dish in the David Collection’

Coffee break

16:00-17:30 Tour of the David Collection (with a focus on objects discussed during the workshop)

19.00 Dinner at San Giorgio (Rosenborggade 7)

Tuesday May 28, The David Collection

10:00-12:00 Session 3: Travelling Objects

Valerie Hansen (Yale University), ‘The World in the Year 1026-1027: The View from Lashkar-I Bazaar’

Antony Eastmond (Courtauld Institute of Art), ‘The many lives of Coin C 330: Queen Tamar | Jalal al-din Mangubarni Khwarazmshah | Queen Rusudan’

Rosa M. Rodríguez Porto (University of Southern Denmark) and Divna Manolova (University of York). ‘The Gaze of the Sovereign: Cosmos and Kingship in Anatolia (with a note on Alfonso X of Castile)’

12.00-14.00 Lunch at Orangeriet (opposite the David Collection)

Afternoon break

19.00 Public Lecture: Sussan Babaie (Courtauld Institute of Art) ‘Portraiture’ in Persian Painting’.

Followed by a reception hosted by the David Collection

Wednesday May 29, Royal Library

10:00-11.00 Session 4: Travelling Philosophy

David Wacks (University of Oregon), ‘The Other Averroism: The Copenhagen Maimonides and

the Maimonidean Controversy’

Coffee break

11:30-13:00 Discussion of future plans

13:00 Lunch (at Royal Library)


Editing was completed: 27.05.2019