Several types of interdisciplinary academic programs offered each year are designed to explore the latest research in the early modern period or in some of the special areas represented in the Clark's collections.
One or more distinguished scholars are appointed each year to the Center/Clark Professorship; tenure ranges from one quarter to an academic year, depending on the number of appointments. The Center/Clark Professor, in collaboration with the Director, organizes academic programs consisting of public lectures, seminars, and workshops, and develops publications from them. If not already affiliated with UCLA, the Center/Clark Professor holds a visiting appointment in one of the departments and participates in its instructional activities.
The heart of the Center/Clark's academic activity is its core programs—series of interdisciplinary events developed around a common theme. This organizing principle allows for great flexibility in format and scope: core programs may range from three or four consecutive workshops to a series spanning a year or more, with a full complement of symposia, workshops, graduate seminars, and public lectures, held at the Clark or at UCLA. Core programs are organized each year by the current Center/Clark Professor or Professors, who are encouraged to design programs that will lead to publication in the Center/Clark series. The Center's Ahmanson-Getty theme-based fellowships are linked to the core programs as well.
Our current core program for 2012–2013 is:
Moralism, Fundamentalism, and the Rhetoric of Decline in Eurasia, 1600–1900
directed by Andrea S. Goldman (UCLA) and Gabriel Piterberg (UCLA)
The Clark and Center core program for 2012–2013 explores responses to crises and upheavals in early modern landed empires, with special focus on the Ottoman and Qing empires. In particular, we will investigate the perceptions of temporary collapses of state power in the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. Detecting tendencies toward moralism and perceived decline in elite discourses and state policies, we will look at the ways such concerns were expressed in the domains of institutional and educational reforms, sexual mores, and cultural representation. We will also examine how social boundaries were both rigidified and contested at such moments of transition. We hope to discern shared patterns across Eurasia as well as trajectories specific to each political entity.
November 16th & 17th
Moralism and the Rhetoric of Decline in Seventeenth-Century Eurasia
The background for this conference is the sixteenth-century price revolution in Eurasia and the attendant political and social crises of the first half of the seventeenth century. It will focus on two phenomena. The first is the religious movements and discourses of moral purification, which ranged from sexual mores to people's attire when they appeared in the public domain. Papers on this theme will consider whether this may have been a reaction to what Walter Andrews has termed The Age of Beloveds (2005).
The second phenomenon is the proliferation of literatures of decline, in which bureaucrats and intellectuals tried to diagnose what was wrong with their states and societies, and to prescribe solutions accordingly. Papers on this topic will go beyond the limitations of content analysis and positivist reading, and will consider its social, literary and rhetorical dimensions.
February 8th & 9th
Urban Discontent in the Long Eighteenth Century across Eurasia
This conference will examine various social and literary expressions of discontent in the main urban centers across these landed empires. Topics may include urban violence, sexual mores, literary lampoons, as well as states' responses to such challenges to their authority.
May 17th & 18th
Imperialism and Fundamentalism in Nineteenth-Century Eurasia
This conference will explore the connections between encounters with Western imperialism and the rise of fundamentalist religious and cultural movements in the Ottoman and Qing empires. Discussions will occasion a revisiting of the term fundamentalism: its history and what it means in various contexts (and this one in particular). While typically scholarship on indigenous responses to imperialism and crises of state power have focused on the local reformers and modernizers, the papers for this session will look at the equally new turn to—or invention of—traditions, whether religious, intellectual, or literary, in the Eurasian landed empires on the verge of modernity. These developments, it will be suggested, helped to forge impressions both internally and abroad of these societies as moribund and "traditional" by the turn of the twentieth century. Topics may include Neo-Confucian revivalism in the late Qing, "preserving character" (xizi) associations in late nineteenth-century China, experiments with old-style poetry, changes in the Ottoman shadow puppet theater (karagöz), Salafi Islam, and Sultan Abdülhamid II's pan-Islamic foreign policy.
Our forthcoming core program for 2013–2014 is:
Iberian Globalization of the Early Modern World
directed by Anna More (UCLA) and Ivonne del Valle (UC Berkeley)
Conferences and Workshops
The Center and the Clark organize and sponsor interdisciplinary conferences and workshops, usually at the Clark, which bring scholars from throughout the world to UCLA to explore specific issues and to develop innovative interpretative approaches. On occasion these symposia are arranged in association with other campus departments or with other institutions. Some of the proceedings are published, either in the Center/Clark series or in journals.
The UCLA Center for 17th- & 18th-Century Studies and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library are currently accepting proposals for Working Groups in Early Modern Studies. Our goal is to stimulate the discussion of research issues and the exchange of work in progress among faculty, post-docs, and graduate students at UCLA and in the LA area. Reading or writing groups, workshops, lecture series with local scholars, and interdisciplinary exchanges are just some of the possibilities that we envision. We will offer some research funding for each group, to be used towards refreshments and hosting local speakers. Organizers may determine the schedule and nature of the meetings. Groups should plan to meet at UCLA or at the Clark Library (depending on space availability). Please submit a brief description of the working group, including a proposed schedule.
Please send your proposals to Kathy Sanchez, Program Manager, at email@example.com. There is no deadline for the submission of working group proposals.
We are pleased to note that four working groups are already in progress this year. If you are interested in joining any of these, please contact the organizers directly.
Early Modern Research Group –an interdisciplinary works-in-progress group organized by graduate students Elisa Harkness (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Connor O'Sullivan (email@example.com) (http://earlymodern.humanities.ucla.edu) Meeting dates: visit http://earlymodern.humanities.ucla.edu/early-modern-research-group
Southern California Book History Consortium–group organized by graduate student Benjamin Beck (firstname.lastname@example.org) First meeting: 3:00 p.m., Friday, January 11, 2013 at the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library (http://clarklibrary.ucla.edu/visit)
Early Modern Transnationalisms –group organized by Andrew Devereux, Assistant Professor of History at Loyola Marymount University (email@example.com) and Andrea Mourdarres, Visiting Professor at the UCLA Dept. of Italian (firstname.lastname@example.org) First meeting: 3:00 p.m., Tuesday, December 11 in Lydeen Library, 4302 Rolfe Hall
"Killing Kings and Building Subjects in Early Modern Eurasia" – complements the 2012-13 Core Program, Moralism, Fundamentalism, and the Rhetoric of Decline in Eurasia, 1600-1900 and is organized by UCLA Ahmanson-Getty Fellows Zirwat Chowdhury (email@example.com) and Spencer Jackson (firstname.lastname@example.org) Next meeting: 3:00 p.m., Wednesday, December 12 in Humanities 348 They will discuss this text: Padiyar, Satish. Chains: David, Canova, and the Fall of the Public Hero in Postrevolutionary France (University Park: Penn State University Press, 2007)
All programs for the current year can be viewed on our calendar.