CfP: Ideas in/about Interaction

Graduate Symposium, 6 May 2022

The Journal of the History of Ideas, the JHI Blog, and the University of Pennsylvania invite graduate students from all institutions, disciplines, and stages of their degree to propose papers for our fourth annual Graduate Student Symposium on “Ideas in/about Interaction” on Friday, 6 May 2022 at the University of Pennsylvania. The symposium coincides with and explores the theme of this year’s JHI Lovejoy Lecture, to be delivered immediately following the symposium by Professor Ann Blair (Department of History, Harvard University).

The JHI Blog invites paper proposals that address collaboration and co-authorship in the history of ideas. The event aims to convene a diverse group of graduate students from different disciplines working on a variety of topics, periods, genres, and regions. For the purposes of the symposium, we conceive of authorship as both a conceptual framework and a set of practices that claim authority over particular intellectual arrangements.

Papers might engage with such questions as:

– Who is considered an author in intellectual history? What practices and interventions are recognized as authorial in historical records? Why are some practices and interventions considered authorial, while others are not?  

– How can we render explicit the nascent power hierarchies in collaborative intellectual production? How have historical subjects conceived of “intellectual collaboration”? What does intellectual history look like from the vantage point of “the assistant”?

– How do intersectional identities (and related power structures), such as those of class, gender, race, caste, and ethnicity, shape intellectual production?

– How can intellectual history contribute to decentring the myth of

the author as a lone individual? Which methodologies offer insights into the interpersonal, interactive process behind fully formed intellectual frameworks?

Exploring these questions, relevant proposals may address topics including but not limited to: histories about collaboration and histories that have been written collaboratively; invisible intellectual labour; the politics and context of collaborations and co-authorship; and the place of editorial work in intellectual production.

Proposals should be no more than 500 words and make clear how the paper responds to this call, the argument it intends to make, the source base, and how this project fits into the larger work of the author (e.g. a seminar paper, dissertation chapter, article to be submitted to a journal, fledgling idea).

Please send your paper proposal along with a one-page CV to The deadline for submission is 10 January 2022. We will notify selected participants in early February 2022.

The symposium is tentatively planned to take place in person, with the flexibility to go hybrid or fully online should the situation require.

Some travel support for invited participants is available. Each participant will pre-circulate an article-length paper in advance. On the day of the symposium, participants will workshop their article-length papers in small break-out groups led by a faculty discussant. All questions can be directed to the JHI Blog editors at

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CFP: Eleventh Annual REFORC Conference on Early Modern Christianity

4-6 May 2022, Berlin

The Eleventh Annual REFORC Conference on Early Modern Christianity will take place in Berlin, hosted by the Sonderforschungsbereich 980 Episteme in Bewegung at the Freie Universität in Berlin. The call for papers is open now.

Body and Soul. Comparative Studies on the Body-Soul Concept in the Pre-Modern Era

The international conference aims to discuss the relationship between body and soul from a transcultural comparative perspective in the early modern period. We will include positions from different disciplines, e.g. medicine, art history, philosophy, literature, theology, and religious studies because of the plurality of pre-modern cultures.

Short Papers, Panels, and General Attendance: The (in-person) conference is open to individual short paper presentations (20-minute presentations) and to thematic sessions of two or three short papers. Papers can focus on all disciplines related to Early Modern Christianity, ca. 1400-1700, such as philosophy, law, history, theology, etc., independent of the theme of the plenary papers.

It is also possible to attend the conference without giving a paper.

Submission deadline: 1 March 2022

Registration deadline: 3 May 2022

Language: The preferred language for papers is English, but papers in French and German are also welcome. Presenters who prefer to give their paper in French or German are invited to provide the audience with an English summary of about 150-200 words.

For further information visit the website.

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EMPHASIS Seminar Series, 2021/22

Early Modern Philosophy and the Scientific Imagination Seminar (EMPHASIS), organised by Stephen Clucas (Birkbeck, University of London)

The EMPHASIS seminar focuses on the history of early modern philosophy (broadly construed), and the history of early modern science (including the occult sciences). It is one of the only seminars in London which addresses these themes together.

All papers in the 2021-2022 schedule will be online via zoom. For further details and to register visit the webpage here.

23 October 2021

Stephen Clucas (Birkbeck, University of London)

John Dee and the ‘Holy Art’ of Alchemy.

6 November 2021

Zoe Screti (University of Birmingham)

‘”The begynyng and endyng ys all one”: Creation, Death, and Resurrection in Early Modern English Alchemical Treatises.’

4 December 2021

Abram Kaplan (Harvard)

“The Advancement of Mathematical Learning: Common Knowledge and Private Property in the Mathematical Republic of Letters, 1655-1693”.

15 January 2022

Stefano Gulizia (University of Milan)

“Natural regeneration in Kepler’s science (1596-1611)”.

5 February 2022

Alicja Bielak (Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw)

‘”Explorers rather than Gatherers” – Digestion of Knowledge and Reading Practices in the notes of the Polish polymath Jan Brożek (1585-1682).’

5 March 2022

Mattia Mantovani (KU Leuven)

“Mechanicῶs/Mechanice: Reconsidering the Origin of Mechanical Philosophy.”

16 April 2022

Anna Ortin Nadal (University of Groningen)

 “Descartes’ taxonomy of signs and the model for sensory perception”.

7 May 2022

Didi van Trijp (University of Leiden)

“Natural History, Illuminated: Depicting Lifelikeness in Early Modern Europe”.

11 June 2022

Jeremy Schneider (Princeton)

“The Blind Naturalist: G. E. Rumphius (1627-1702) and the Problem of Other Minds”.

2 July 2022

Spencer Weinreich (Princeton)

“Broken Bones: Matter, Miracle, and the Reformation of the Relics”.

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New Intellectual History Books from Brill’s HEPCT Series

Brill’s History of European Political and Constitutional Thought Series is delighted to announce the publication of two new exciting volumes in intellectual history.

Crisis and Renewal in the History of European Political Thought (2021), edited by Cesare Cuttica and László Kontler advances a better, more historical and contextual, manner to consider not only the present, but also the future of ‘crisis’ and ‘renewal’ as key concepts of our political language as well as fundamental categories of interpretation. This volume provides a historically informed analysis of what it means to reflect on and theorise about crisis.

Contributors are: Erica Benner, Niall Bond, Nathaniel Boyd, Andrea Catanzaro, Patricia Chiantera-Stutte, Alberto Clerici, Cesare Cuttica, Annalisa Furia, George Gallwey, Kai Gräf, Ferenc Hörcher, Paschalis M. Kitromilides, László Kontler, Adriana Luna-Fabritius, Clara Maier, Janine Murphy, Adrian O’Connor, and Mark Somos.

The Diplomatic Enlightenment: Spain, Europe, and the Age of Speculation (2021), by Edward Jones Corredera, reconfigures the study of the origins of the Enlightenment in the Spanish Empire. Challenging dominant interpretations of the period, this book shows that early eighteenth-century Spanish authors turned to Enlightenment ideas to reinvent Spain’s role in the European balance of power.

For more information on Brill’s History of European Political and Constitutional Thought Series, which is edited by Erica Benner, László Kontler, and Mark Somos, click here.

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Marta Fattori (1942-2021): in memoriam

It was with great sadness that we learned of the death of the distinguished Italian historian of philosophy, Marta Fattori, who was closely associated with Constance Blackwell, founder of ISIH. Hilary Gatti writes:

            Marta Fattori’s sudden and unexpected death last July has left many people mourning and disorientated. Professor Emeritus of the Università di Roma “La Sapienza”, she had served for many years as Dean of the prestigious Facoltà di Filosofia and then of the enlarged Facoltà di Filosofia, Lettere, Scienze Umanistiche e Studi Orientali. The many students whose work and careers in the history of philosophy she continued to follow closely will sadly miss her constant and generous attention, while her former colleagues will lack an expert point of reference which often involved important personal friendships.

           Professor Fattori was still working on a number of projects involving British scholars and institutions. A long-standing member of the Editorial Board of the Oxford Francis Bacon edition, she was a close collaborator and friend of its foundingDirector, Graham Rees, and was still actively working on Bacon’s Latin texts when she died. She also enjoyed a scholarly relationship with Constance Blackwell and was an early member of the International Society for Intellectual History as well as a recent contributor tothe Intellectual History Review. She maintained on-going contacts with the Warburg Institute where a number of her ex-students in the history of philosophy had the privilege of completing their studies.

           In Italy, besides her university career, she cultivated strong links with the Lessico Intellettuale Europeo, a section of the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche founded and directed for many years by Tullio Gregory . As a member of its Academic Board, she coordinated a number of research projects for its Study Centre. As well as contributing to and editing several of the volumes of their three-yearly conference papers, she published in their series some of her most important work, such as Il lessico del ‘Nuovo Organon’ di Francesco Bacone (1980, 2 vols.) and Linguaggio e filosofia nel Seicento europeo (2000).

           Added to her life-long engagement with Francis Bacon’s works and their importance as a stimulus in the development of modern science, Marta Fattori was noted for her in-depth study of the early modern philosopher of education, Iohannes Amos Comenius. She had obtained her first university degree while studying with Aldo Visalberghi, an internationally renowned Professor of Pedagogy known also for his anti-fascism and involvement with the Italian Resistance Movement. Even after she had moved over to the field of History of Philosophy, Fattori continued her pedagogical studies by editing an edition of the works of Comenius in Italian and dedicating to him a full-length Italian language monograph translated into French as Comenius. Philosophie moderne et prophétisme (2018).

           When, in 1998, the Vatican opened the Archivio della Congregazione per la Dottrina della Fede to historical research, Professor Fattori began a systematic enquiry into the censorship operated by the Catholic Church on philosophers and their works through its Inquisitional trials and Index of Prohibited Books. Some of the results of this meticulously documented research have already appeared as separate articles, but full-length books were in the making at the time of her death. It is sad to think that, should they eventually appear, they will now be published posthumously.

           At times, Marta Fattori had to fight against physical disabilities. They taught her to be patient, resilient and dedicated to establishing her democratically progressive values and purposes in the rapidly evolving world of higher education. Her friends will miss her generous hospitality, and the pungent irony of her conversation.      

Hilary Gatti (

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50 Years of Keith Thomas’s Religion and the Decline of Magic, 3 September 2021

3 September 2021, 14:00-17:45 (BST)

This year sees the 50th anniversary of Sir Keith Thomas’s masterpiece, Religion and the Decline of Magic (1971), one of the most significant British historical monographs of the last century. This short conference will celebrate and reflect on Thomas’s achievement as well as publicise new interdisciplinary work on the history of magic and religion.

The event will be live streamed from All Souls College, Oxford. Due to a limit on numbers as a result of the pandemic, only a small audience will be invited to attend the conference in-person. Please register below to receive a link to the live stream.

Registrations close 2 September 2021, 15:00 (BST). Please register here.

Organised by Michelle Pfeffer (Magdalen College, University of Oxford), Jan Machielsen (Cardiff University), and Robin Briggs (All Souls College, University of Oxford)

Supported by All Souls College, the Oxford History Faculty, and the Past & Present Society.

Conference Schedule


Session 1: The Decline of Magic Today
Chair: Sir Noel Malcolm
Panellists: Robin Briggs, Chris Gosden, Michelle Pfeffer, Will Pooley, Laura Sangha, David Zeitlyn

Registrants will be sent the written papers for this roundtable a week in advance of the conference.


Session 2: The Legacy of Religion and the Decline of Magic
Chair: Paul Slack
Panellists: Michael Hunter, Alan Macfarlane, Jan Machielsen, Sophie Page, Alexandra Walsham


Session 3: Response from Sir Keith Thomas

(Images from The Folio Society’s 2012 edition of Religion and the Decline of Magic, illustrated by Grady McFerrin)

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CFP: ‘Projects and Projectors in the Early Modern and Enlightenment periods’ (c. 1640-1780)

In the Early Modern and Enlightenment periods the figure of the projector was as vital as it was common. Daniel Defoe famously nicknamed his era the “Projecting Age.” Decades earlier scholars were already commenting on the “rampant passion for schemes”. Projectors were inventors or entrepreneurs ‘who set out to gain the trust and backing of a powerful patron such as a ruler or potential investor, for what he claimed was a financially profitable and generally prestigious original venture which would yield practical benefits.’

Projects varied widely in character and scope and involved almost every type of venture: engineering, mining, ameliorating the condition of the poor and infirm, banking, building, fabricating wonderous machines, and turning base metals into precious ones. More scholarly projects included reforms (or creation) of institutions of higher learning and scientific academies, invariably through substantial outlay of public capital. Projectors also offered rulers solutions for intractable problems, promising these would generate wealth and cure social ills. In Germany, projectors played an instrumental role in the country’s emergent cameralism.

Many of these projects miscarried or proved money-losing ventures. Combining the quest for personal profit with expressed concern for the public good, projectors were often treated with suspicion. The projector emerged as one of the age’s most ambiguous figures: This “homo novus” was a “liminal individual” whose life embodied the “fluid cultural moment when ‘science’ had not yet achieved its preeminent modern position as the sole legitimator of truth, but instead had to compete with a number of other intellectual pursuits”.

We invite proposals for a volume on either projectors and/or projects, edited by Audrey Borowski (University of Oxford) and Mordechai Feingold (Caltech), to be published by Brill.

Topics can cover (but are not limited to):

§ The projector in his milieu/context

§ The strategies of the projector

§ The projector between different worlds/in his multiple identities (courtier, scholar, political agent etc.)

§ Competition between projectors

§ Particular case studies of projectors

§ Projectors and alchemy

§ Projectors and cameralism

§ Projectors and learning/scholarship/philosophy

§ The nexus between commercialism and scientific and technological knowledge

§ The state/court and projecting/projectors

§ Criticism of projectors and attitudes towards projecting

Abstracts should be sent to Audrey Borowski ( and Mordechai Feingold ( by 31 December 2021. Final papers would be expected by 1 June 2022.

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#ISIH2021 Conference programme available

Coerced Labour in the Early Modern World (1500-1800): Definitions, Justifications and Resistances

7 – 8 September 2021, online

The International Society for Intellectual History (ISIH) is pleased to present this conference as part of a series of online events designed by early career researchers, for early career researchers. Its main objective is to provide the community of intellectual historians from across the world with a forum for discussion, and to give them the opportunity to present their research in these complicated times. In the midst of the Covid pandemic and related economic instabilities, this conference aims to promote a global reflection on the different forms of exploitation that emerged during the early modern period.

The ISIH would also like to announce that the Annual General Meeting of the Society will be held during the conference, at 11:30am (CET) on 8 September.

The programme is available to view in the above document.

Registration for #ISIH2021 is now open and can be accessed via Google Forms. Registrations close 6 September 2021, 12:00 (CET).

Organised by Giovanni Lista.

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CFP: 7th Derrida Today Conference

13-16 June 2022

CFP closes 1 November 2021

The Derrida Today Conference will focus on the ongoing value of Derrida’s work and deconstruction as well as the political, ethical, cultural, artistic, and public debates and philosophical futures that confront us. The conference will be broadly interdisciplinary and invites contributions from a range of academic, disciplinary, and cultural contexts. We will accept papers and panel proposals from scholars, academics, and postgraduates on any aspect of Derrida’s work, or deconstruction, in relation to various topics as well as contemporary issues. While the conference welcomes contributions on diverse topics and from any discipline in relation to Derrida’s work and deconstruction, it is particularly interested in discussions exploring the concept of “democracy ” especially in light of the 6th January storming of the Capitol in the USA, and consequences of the current COVID pandemic.

For the full details please see: 

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CFP: 2022 John Locke Conference

21–23 June 2022

American University in Bulgaria, Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria

Keynote Speakers:

Sorana Corneanu (University of Bucharest)

Shelley Weinberg (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)


Diego Lucci (American University in Bulgaria)

The 2022 John Locke Conference will gather scholars interested in any aspect of Locke’s oeuvre, with the purpose of encouraging research on this important author and promoting interaction between experts in different disciplines, such as philosophy, theology, education, political theory, intellectual history, and economic thought.

Paper proposals concerning any aspect of Locke’s thought, his influences, and his impact are welcome. Paper proposals shall be submitted by the deadline of December 31, 2021 via email to Prof. Diego Lucci at For more details, see the full Call for Papers.

The ISIH is proud to endorse this event.

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  • #ISIH2022 Conference

    #ISIH2022 Conference

    #ISIH2022 Our 2022 Conference will take place in Venice, 12-15 Sept.