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Keynote Lecture by Nikolas Jaspert

Oct 10, 2014

At the sixth Annual Conference, Prof. Nikolas Jaspert from Heidelberg University gave a public keynote lecture on the topic “Cultural Brokerage: A Medieval Mediterranean Perspective”. It took place at the Karl Jaspers Centre on Thursday, October 09, 2014.

In his lecture, Prof. Jaspert focused on the Mediterranean, the meeting point between Africa, Asia and Europe – an area attributed with a higher propensity to cultural mediation than most other regions. Academic discourse on syncretism, hybridisation and transfer has been particularly eager to focus on this “Great Sea” of small dimensions. Reflecting on such approaches and their motivations might serve as a base for more general thoughts on the relation between space and communication within and between societies. Which places were particularly apt for the performance and display of communicative practices? What motivated such processes, and how were they brought about? What is the relation between cultural mediation and cultural brokerage? Some mediaeval, Mediterranean case studies might help to answer these and other questions.

Nikolas Jaspert is Professor of Medieval History of the Institute of History at the Centre for the Study of European History and Culture, Heidelberg University. He specializes in Iberian history in the Middle Ages, crusades, history of orders and German-Spanish relations. He is also the President of the Société Internationale des Historiens de la Méditerranée since 2013.

The sixth Annual Conference of the Cluster "Asia and Europe" took place from October 8-10, 2014. It was organised by Prof. Christiane Brosius, Prof. Melanie Trede, and Prof. Hans Harder on behalf of research area B "Public Spheres".


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  • Picture: “A map of those countries in which the Apostles travelled in propagating Christianity” by Joseph T.Scott,1800 (detail), http://maps.bpl.org