On the 14th May the North West Early Modern Seminar visited the University of Liverpool for an excellent discussion of current research projects. We opened the seminar with the five minute ‘speed-daters’ who all gave insightful introductions to their research. Rachel Winchcombe (University of Manchester) gave an introduction to her PhD research on the varying representations of America in early modern print culture in England, looking at the ways in which America had been understood and integrated into European thought. Margaret Bullet (University of Huddersfield) discussed John Harrison’s central role in the religious conflicts in Leeds in the early seventeenth-century and the appropriation of images of civil authority. Jessica Patterson’s project (University of Manchester), analysing the intellectual thought of John Zephaniah Holwell during the East India Trading Company, particularly his ‘deist’ readings of ancient Hindu texts, opened an exciting and enlightening debate. Greg Lynall (University of Liverpool) explored the imagery of thermal optical devices as a trope for the focusing of energies and powers in early modern satirical prints, introducing themes which resonated with Pauline Ellen Reid’s paper later in the day. Eva Krause Jørgensen (University of Aarhus/University of Liverpool) discussed the possibilities of the amalgamation of political discourse and economic theory as an approach to the intellectual history of political reform in Denmark. Matteo Salonia (University of Liverpool) concluded the series of five minute papers with an exploration of the role of private entrepreneurs in Genoese economic culture and empire building along the mediterranean.
Five minute ‘speed-daters’ from left to right Matteo Salonia, Greg Lynall, Rachel Winchcombe, Jessica Patterson, Eva Krause Jørgensen and Margaret Bullett.
After a coffee break we reconvened for two 20 minute papers. Pauline Ellen Reid (University of Georgia (Athens)/University of Liverpool) discussed the politics of visual arrangement in the work of Francis Quarles, looking at the imagery of prisms and the use of repetition, paradox, chiasmus and parallelisms in seventeenth century poetry. Naomi Tadmor (Lancaster University) then introduced her new research project ‘the semantics of belonging- with a focus on the notion of settlement’ which looked at kinship and the poor in parishes over the ‘long-eighteenth century’. The long term chronological approach adopted within the research offered an in-depth analysis of changing cultural attitudes and legal definitions of settlement and belonging. Following questions the discussion continued later over drinks.
Pauline Ellen Reid and Naomi Tadmor taking questions.
The North West Seminar will be looking for contributions next academic year. To get involved email the secretary Michael Smith at email@example.com and follow us on twitter @NWSeminar to hear first about future calls for papers.