The Transformation of Poverty, Philanthropy, and Health Care in Late Antiquity: Mar. 26-29, 2015, University of Iowa
The Society for Late Antiquity announces that the eleventh biennial Shifting Frontiers in Late Antiquity conference will take place at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, IA, March 26-29, 2015. The period of Late Antiquity (A.D. 200-700) witnessed great changes in respect to attitudes towards poverty, philanthropy, and health care. The conference aims to bring together scholars in order to explore these issues amidst global concerns over poverty and the provision of health care, as well as questions over the role of private philanthropy in effecting change within these areas. Two advances in particular, the ascendency of Pope Francis to the papacy and the debate over the federal provision of healthcare in the United States, helped to inspire the conference's goal of surveying how late antique individuals and institutions viewed, wrote upon, depicted, and grappled with these issues, and the manner in which they shaped the late antique world economically, socially, politically, and topographically. Examples of questions one may wish to address are: What were the elite Roman, Byzantine, or Islamic attitudes towards the poor? What do we mean by the "economy of charity"? What was the status of physicians amid these new attitudes toward healing? How did monasticism shape health care in the later empire? How did attitudes towards healing transform the late antique landscape? What is the interaction between religion and science? We hope to receive proposals for papers concerning all aspects of poverty, philanthropy, and health care. Methodologically, proposals may approach these issues from a number of textual, archaeological, numismatic, papyrological, or epigraphic standpoints. The conference aims to serve as an interdisciplinary forum for specialists throughout the Mediterranean, Middle East, and Africa during the period of Late Antiquity, and as such, welcomes a broad interpretation of the theme.
Two keynote speakers will be taking part in the conference: Professor Ramsay MacMullen, Dunham Professor Emeritus in History and Classics, Yale University (U.S.A.) and Professor Susanna Elm, History Department, University of California, Berkeley (U.S.A.).
The deadline for proposals is November 15, 2014. Abstracts should be 200-300 words in length. Papers should be in English. Proposals from graduate students are welcome, but they should indicate on their submission whether they have discussed their proposal with their supervisor or not. Please note that the submission of an abstract carries with it a commitment to attend the conference should the abstract be accepted.