November 7, 2019

CML Videoseminar. John Mulhall, "Newfound Ignorance: Attitudes Towards Greeks and Arabs and the Origins of the Medieval Translation Movement in Southern Italy"

Mødelokale 3, SDU, 2:30-3:30 pm

CMods Office, HRC, York, 1:30-2:30 pm (via videolink)

Centre for Medieval Literature

CML Videoseminar by John Mulhall (Harvard University): "Newfound Ignorance: Attitudes Towards Greeks and Arabs and the Origins of the Medieval Translation Movement in Southern Italy".

Abstract

In the course of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, Latin scholars around the Mediterranean translated hundreds of new texts from Greek and Arabic into Latin. These translations upended the traditional educational curriculum and revolutionized nearly every scholarly discipline in the Latin west, from philosophy and medicine to mathematics and astronomy. While the extraordinary effect of this movement on the history of ideas has long been recognized, the cultural factors that generated and sustained translation on a massive scale remain largely unknown. What motivated scholars to transform the very foundation of their intellectual culture? Why did so many devote their lives to translating texts from neighboring cultures, with whom their secular rulers were so often in conflict? John’s presentation will aim at answering these questions by looking at the beginnings of this movement in late eleventh-century Italy.

Image: BNF Latin 6823 fol. 2r, Monfredo de Monte Imperiali Liber de herbis, 14th century.

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