The Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities presents
The Intellectual and Literary History Public Seminar Series


Co-hosted by the School of Historical and Philosophical Inquiry 

Renaissance Religions: Modes and Meanings in History

This paper addresses some current issues surrounding approaches to the study of religion in the pre-reformation period. In particular, revisionist approaches to  humanism and humanists are forcing a re-evaluation of the framing of belief and the boundaries between Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are seen to be more fluid and porous, while a keen interest in devotion and materiality has lent new voice to ‘subaltern’ elements in society.  I will be taking Florence in the late fifteenth century as my case study, and will examine how newly discovered texts and approaches to antique religions were challenging understandings of the nature of theology and the boundaries of orthodoxy. I will draw upon material that has hitherto escaped comment in the historiography.

Peter Howard is Director of the Institute for Religion and Critical inquiry at the Australian Catholic University, and formerly Founding Director of the Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at Monash University. He has published widely in the areas of Italian Renaissance history and medieval sermon studies. He is currently completing a monograph entitled Experiencing Religion in Renaissance Florence: Theologies of the Piazza (Routledge, 2020). His other current research interests include a project on preaching culture and the intellectual moves behind the production of the wall frescoes in the Sistine Chapel (for which he has received an ARC DP19), and another on the changing conceptual dimensions of how health and urban circumstances of life were conceived of, and reflected upon in the public sphere by way of the pulpit, in theological and moral terms. He is also a collaborator on the SCISMA project at Turku University, funded by the Finnish Academy.
Image: La predica di San Marco ad Alessandra d’Egitto, 1504-07, Gentile Bellini (1430/35-1507) & Giovanni Bellini (1425/30-1516), oil on panel, 3.47x7.7 m.
4pm Thursday 29th August 2019
Seminar Room, Level 4 Forgan Smith Tower
The University of Queensland, St Lucia

Please contact or 07 334 69492 for further details.
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All welcome.


Seminar Room, Level 4 Forgan Smith Tower, UQ St Lucia