The Renaissance Society of America Conference 2012 has now concluded. The conference, which is the premier conference on interdisciplinary Renaissance studies in North America, was held from 21-24 March at the Grand Hyatt hotel in Washington, DC.
This annual conference on Renaissance and early modern European and Mediterranean studies is sponsored by the Renaissance Society of America and information about the 2012 RSA conference is available at their website. History students at Northern Illinois University may be interested in finding out more about the Renaissance Society of America or about historical conferences in general.
My sessions with the Medici Archive Project on Saturday afternoon went well. I was chairing one of their sessions on information circulation and management. My own paper on Mediterranean slavery and the French Mediterranean seemed to go over well, as did Mark Rosen’s on Livorno’s Quattro Mori statue, and then a good discussion of Mediterranean slavery developed in the lengthy Q&A.
I attended several of the sessions dedicated to the editorial career of Henry Tom, who was a senior acquisitions editor at Johns Hopkins University Press. Henry was the editor of my monograph, Warrior Pursuits: Noble Culture and Civil Conflict in Early Modern France (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2010), as well as a dizzying 1000 books over his career. The sessions were a splendid tribute to Henry and his life’s work, with papers and comments by Eric Dursteler, John Marino, Ed Muir, Guido Ruggiero, and others. It is rare to have sessions dedicated to editors’ work at an academic conference, but the presentations and questions from members of the audience prompted interesting discussions on the state of academic publishing today.
I also attended sessions on “Early Modern Globalization”, “Mediterranean Travel and Pilgrimage”, “Bent Broken and Shattered: European Images of Death and Torture, 1300-1650”, “Diplomacy, Secrecy, and Espionage in Early Modern France (1560-1630)”, and “The Politics of Culture of Violence”. The papers presented in these sessions will contribute new ideas to my teaching of my courses on HIST 458 Mediterranean World, 1450-1750, HIST 414 European Wars of Religion, 1520-1660, and HIST 640 Early Modern Globalization.
Finally, the conference offers Renaissance and early modern historians excellent opportunities for academic networking and exchange. I enjoyed reconnecting with many colleagues in Renaissance studies, Mediterranean history, Italian history, and early modern French history.