With the proliferation of online lectures, working groups and all manner of events, we at the JHI Blog thought it would be a good idea to consolidate news and opportunities relevant to our colleagues working in intellectual history. We will publish these roundups of public lectures, conferences, calls for papers, working groups and new journal issues every other Saturday.

We encourage our readers to send us information and updates about any news or events that fits within this scope. You can use this form to let us know about something you’d like us to publicize.

Colloquium: Mathijs Boom (UvA) and Stephen Snelders (UU) at the Descartes Centre, Utrecht University

Mathijs Boom: “Deltaic History: Reimagining Human and Natural History in the Low Countries, 1740-1840”

Stephen Snelders: “Public Dialogue in the Anthropocene: The Role of History”

February 16, 15:30 – 17:00 CET. Register.


Book Presentation: Peter E. Gordon’s Migrants in the Profane: Critical Theory and the Question of Secularization (Yale, 2020)

In conversation Seyla Benhabib (Columbia / Yale), Max Pensky (Binghamton), and Hent de Vries (NYU). Hosted by the NYU / Columbia Intellectual History Workshop.

February 17, 5:00PM EST.
Via Zoom: Meeting ID: 917 0247 8228 | Passcode: 183165


Seminar: Towards a History of Intellectual Labor: Gender, Negritude, and the Black Public Sphere
with Merve Fejzula (Missouri)

History of Political Ideas/Early Career Seminar, Institute of Historical Research at the School of Advanced Study, University of London.

February 17, 5:30pm-7:00pm GMT. Register.


Symposium: Hope and Resistance in the Anthropocene

What does it mean to live, hope and resist in the anthropocene? What does environmental participation and being human entail in the ‘age of extinction’? In this symposium, we reflect on hope and resistance as a response to life and loss in the anthropocene, and ask what sustains us and what it means in practice and theory to be citizens and humans in these trying times. Full program here.

Organized by Dr Audrey Verma and JC Niala. 

February 19, 10am – 4pm GMT. Register.


Conference: (Re)Constitutions of Choice: An Asynchronous/ Synchronous Event

What does it mean to make a choice? Decision-making is rarely as simple as right or wrong, black or white, yes or no: it is a murky and complex process filled with human (and nonhuman) will, impulse, and error. This event brings together artists, activists, and scholars from across disciplinary boundaries to explore how choices are made, and why. Join us for three exciting panels that examine the social, philosophical, and creative contours of choice-making.

Hosted by the Wolf Humanities Center, University of Pennsylvania.
February 19, 11:00am EST. Register.


Seminar: “Wonder as a Problem for Islamic History,” with Travis Zadeh (Yale University)

Part of the Near Eastern Studies Virtual Seminar Series. Respondent: Daniel Sheffield, Near Eastern Studies.

February 22, 12:00 – 1:30pm. Register.


Lecture: “Antisemitism and Fantasies of National Purity from Mussolini to the Present,” by Ruth Ben-Ghiat (NYU)

This talk will examine the place of fantasies of national purity in selected authoritarian states from Mussolini to the present, and how racial legislation and propaganda, such as that directed at Jews, factor into this larger context. We will look at the three timeframes and states of mind strongman leaders leverage: utopia, nostalgia, and crisis. Sponsored by the Yale Program for the Study of Antisemitism and Whitney Humanities Center.

February 23, 5:00pm EST. Register.


Book Talk: “The Broken Heart of America: St. Louis and the Violent History of the United States,” by Walter Johnson (Harvard)

In conversation with Cornel West (Harvard) and Suzannah Clark (Harvard). Hosted by the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard.

February 23, 6:00pm EST. Register.


Seminar: “Sea-ing the City”
With Lalitha Kamath + Gopal Dubey (Tata Institute of Social Sciences), Nikhil Anand (University of Pennsylvania), Rhea Shah (University of Pennsylvania), Nityanand Jayaraman (Vettiver Collective), and Kelly Shannon (KU Leuven)

Working together since January 2019, Inhabited Sea is a research collaborative that examines how the cities of Mumbai may be remade with the seas, rains, tides, and storms of our climate-changed present. In this second of three public presentations, we screen + share the results of three projects that engage with the ways that Koli fishers, flamingoes and transit riders know and inhabit the seas in the city.

February 24, 3:00 – 5:00pm CET. Register.


Discussion: “What is Antifa? Anti-fascism from 1930s Spain to 2020s North Carolina”
With James Chappel (Duke University), Denise Lynn (University of Southern Indiana), and Stuart Schrader (Johns Hopkins University)

Join a group of European and American historians for a discussion of the long and fascinating history of antifascism: a history that involves radical Communist women in the 1930s as much as punk rockers in the 1980s. Hosted by the Duke Human Rights Center at the Franklin Humanities Institute.

February 24, 12:00 – 1:15pm EST. Register.


In Conversation: Joy Harjo (23rd US Poet Laureate) and Beth Piatote (UC Berkeley)

Harjo discusses her signature project as Poet Laureate. Living Nations, Living Words: A Map of First Peoples Poetry presents the work of contemporary Native poets in a national, fully digital and interactive map featuring audio recordings by authors. Developed in collaboration with the Library of Congress’s Geography and Map Division, the project maps 47 contemporary Native American poets across the country — including Louise Erdrich, Natalie Diaz, Ray Young Bear, and Craig Santos Perez. More information here.

February 25, 4:00pm, Livestream.


Call for Papers: “Crisis and Its Temporalities.”
Read full call here.

2nd European University Institute Graduate Conference in Intellectual History, to take place on May 19-20, 2021 via Zoom. To submit a paper or propose a panel, please e-mail a short bio along with a titled abstract or panel proposal to our conference email address: ihwg.eui@protonmail.com. Abstracts should not exceed 300 words for papers of 20 minutes of length. Panel proposals should not exceed 900 words. Please note that applicants must be doctoral researchers and must not have defended their thesis by the dates of the conference. 

The call for abstract submissions will close on February 26 and successful applicants will be notified by March 9.


Call for Papers: “Emergency in the History of Political Thought.”
Read full call here.

The 12th Annual London Graduate Conference, 24-25 June 2021, will explore the theme of ‘Emergency in the History of Political Thought’. To apply, please email a C.V. along with your proposal to historyofpoliticalthoughtnet@gmail.com.. Abstracts should be no more than 500 words for papers of 20 minutes in length. Panel proposals should include the titles of individual papers and not exceed 1500 words in total. As this is a graduate conference, please note that the organizers can only consider proposals from applicants who have not been awarded a doctorate. The conference will most likely follow a hybrid format. Please let us know whether you would like to present in person, circumstances permitting, or online, and which timezone you are based in.

For any queries, please contact the Organising Committee via email: historyofpoliticalthoughtnet@gmail.com.

The call for papers will close on March 26 at 23:59 GMT. Successful applicants will be notified no later than 28 April 2021

Featured Image: The Newspaper Carriers (Work Disgraces). Georg Scholz, 1921. The Art Institute of Chicago.