back to Renaissance News & Notes main page

Renaissance Society of America logoRenaissance
News & Notes

Fall 2013

Volume XXV.2

CUNY Graduate Center logo

In Memoriam

Clare M. Murphy (d. 2013)

Philip J. Ford (1949–2013)

Katherine A. Almquist (1968–2012)

Marjorie Riley (1918–2012)

Isaías Lerner (d. 2013)

Gustavo Costa (1930–2012)

Patricia Meilman (d. 2012)

To share your memories please visit the In Memoriam page, where you can leave comments.

Support the Paul Oskar Kristeller Fund

The RSA received a matching grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to allow us to expand our Paul Oskar Kristeller research grants, and provide a permanent source of funding for them. A significant gift from the Ambrosiana Foundation brought us partway to our goal; a second came from the Delmas Foundation. The rest has come from member support, some $73,000 to date since 2012.

The endowed funding for these research grants allows us, in turn, to apply operating funds to a new set of residential research grants. They include one each at the Folger, Newberry, and Huntington Libraries and one at the University of Toronto’s Center for Reformation and Renaissance Studies. RSA now awards twenty-four grants annually. RSA’s support of research has been crucial for its members, and especially for junior members.

The Paul Oskar Kristeller fund will continue to grow with your help. You can make a single donation, a recurring monthly donation, or a fixed sum split into monthly payments. These grants will be at the heart of our expanding program of research support.

Many thanks to all of you who have been so generous in your support of our grants program!

RSA-TCP Article Prize in Digital Renaissance Research

The Renaissance Society of America and the Text Creation Partnership (TCP) are jointly offering a $600 prize that seeks to recognize and encourage the scholarly use of the vast range and depth of Renaissance materials made available by digitization. The purpose of the prize is to recognize and reward original research that makes substantial and significant use of digitized archives of Renaissance print and manuscript source materials, and which engages thoughtfully with these resources.

To be eligible, the article must be written in English by a current member of the RSA and deal with a topic within the chronological period 1300–1700. Articles dealing with Renaissance history, any of the vernacular literatures or Latin, art, music, philosophy, and other disciplines recognized by RSA are eligible. The article must present an original interpretation of an aspect of Renaissance culture; the article must not be primarily archival, bibliographic, or pedagogical in nature. More details on how to apply will be announced this fall.

The prize is sponsored by the TCP, a cooperative association of scores of academic libraries — MPublishing at the University of Michigan, and commercial publishers. TCP is the leading producer of digital, text-searchable editions of early printed manuscripts. TCP’s primary objective is to produce standardized, digitally-encoded editions of early print books. The chief sources of the TCP’s digital images are databases that include Proquest’s Early English Books Online (EEBO), Gale’s Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO), and Readex’s Evans Early American Imprints. Through the TCP, commercial publishers and over 150 different libraries have come together to fund the conversion of these cultural heritage materials into enduring, digitally dynamic editions.

Application Deadline: 15 NOVEMBER 2013

The submission portal will open soon. RSA members will be emailed when submission opens.

News from the RSA Chair of Publications

The RSA Texts and Studies series is soliciting proposals for book manuscripts, in the areas of reference works and editions. For those who are interested, an initial inquiry to the Chair of Publications (Craig Kallendorf, should be followed by a 2–3 page proposal offering a rationale for the book, a break-down by chapters, and (where relevant) an indication of who will write each chapter. Please note that the series is limited to editions and reference works, as kinds of scholarship that are otherwise difficult to place.

2013 Prize and Grant Winners

Congratulations to all the winners.

Paul Oskar Kristeller Lifetime Achievement Award

Ronald G. Witt, Duke University

Phyllis Goodhart Gordan Book Prize

Anthony Cascardi, University of California, Berkeley
Cervantes, Literature, and the Discourse of Politics
University of Toronto Press

Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation Book Prize

E. Natalie Rothman, University of Toronto
Brokering Empire: Trans-Imperial Subjects between Venice and Istanbul
Cornell University Press

William Nelson Prize

Ewa Kocieszewska, The Warburg Institute
"War and Seduction in Cybele’s Garden: Contextualizing the Ballet des Polonais,”
Volume 65, no. 3 (2012) of Renaissance Quarterly
Honorable Mention:
Jessica Maier, Mount Holyoke College
"‘A True Likeness’: The Renaissance City Portrait,”
Volume 65, no. 3 (2012) of Renaissance Quarterly

Samuel H. Kress Fellowships in Renaissance Art History

Martine Sauret, Macalester College
"Voyages dans l’école cartographique de Dieppe au XVIe siècle; espaces, altérités et influences”
Lynn Catterson, Columbia University
"Altering the Past: Donatello & the Antiquities Market”
Phillip Usher, Barnard College
"Epic Arts in the French Renaissance”
Alexandra Hoare, CASVA, National Gallery of Art
"Salvator Rosa as ‘Amico Vero’: Friendship and the Free Artist in Seventeenth-Century Italy. With a Critical Edition and English Translation of Rosa’s Letters”
Saundra Weddle Drury University
"The Urban and Architectural Practices of Venetian Convents during the Early Modern Period”

Rensselaer W. Lee Memorial Grant in Art History

Felicia Else, Gettysburg College
"Water and the Medici: An Interdisciplinary Study of Art, Festivals and Daily Life in Florence”

Renaissance Society of America Research Grants

Catherine Chou, Stanford University
"The Secret Life of Parliament: A History of the Elizabethan Parliaments out of Session”
Sean Parrish, Duke University
"Marketing Nature: Apothecaries, Retail Circuits, and Science in 16th Century Venice”
Shannon McHugh, New York University
"‘Ho cangiato sesso e forma, / ma ‘l desir no’: Gendering the Voice in Italian Petrarchism”
Ananda Cohen Suarez, Cornell University
"A Relocated Renaissance: Spanish Textiles and Andean Murals of the 17th Century”
Diego Pirillo, University of California, Berkeley
"The Renaissance in Exile: Diasporic Networks and the Transnational Book Market”
Giada Damen, Princeton University Art Museum
"Andrea Vendramin’s Museum and the Organization of Knowledge in Late Renaissance Italy”
Nicholas Eckstein, University of Sydney
"Florence on Foot: Plague, Urban Identity, and the Visitations of San Michele Arcangelo”
A. Katie Harris, University of California, Davis
"Proving Sanctity: Evidence and the Cult of Relics in the Early Modern Spanish Mediterranean”
Jonathan Reid, East Carolina University
"Reformation and Revolt in the French Cities, 1520–1562”

Paul Oskar Kristeller Memorial Grant

Roberta Ricci, Bryn Mawr College
"More on Penmanship and Calligraphy: Poggio Bracciolini’s Book Hand”

The Bodleian Library Research Grant

Katherine Larson, University of Toronto
"Embodying Song in Early Modern England”

The Patricia H. Labalme Grant

Catherine Castner, University of South Carolina
"Biondo Flavio on Venice and Crusading”

The RSA-Folger Grant

Mark Rankin, James Madison University
"William Tyndale’s Practice of Prelates (1530) and the Nature of Reading in Renaissance England”

The RSA-Huntington Grant

Michael Ursell, University of California Santa Cruz
"The Muses’ Anvil: Inspiration, Bookmaking, and the Renaissance Lyric”

The RSA-Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (CRRS) Grant

Erin Kelly, University of Victoria
"Religious Conversion in Sixteenth-Century English Drama”

Renaissance Quarterly Available as an e-Book

The University of Chicago Press and the Renaissance Society of America are excited to provide members with a new way to read Renaissance Quarterly — as a full issue on your iPad, iPhone, Kindle, Android, or computer.

With the advent of electronic publishing, many members have told us that they miss being able to sit down with an entire issue of Renaissance Quarterly. The new RQ e-Book Edition is meant to offer the best of both worlds by combining the convenience and speed of digital accessibility with the integrity of the complete print issue. Browse the issue for those interesting articles and reviews you don’t come across in your normal literature searching. Once downloaded, you can read the issue at your leisure without being connected to the internet.

To access the latest e-Book Edition, visit the Member Subscriptions page (sign in required) and select the link to download the Renaissance Quarterly e-Book Edition.

2014 New York Conference

All accepted participants must register for the conference by 15 November 2013. Other attendees may register at any time, but registration rates will go up on 1 December: the lowest registration rates are available now. All accepted participants must be 2014 members of the RSA as well as register for the conference. In order to qualify for member conference rates, please make sure your membership is current and that you are signed in to your RSA member profile. For questions about membership and registration requirements, see our 2014 New York page and our FAQ.

The conference will be held at the New York Hilton Midtown, located at 1335 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY, 10019. RSA has reserved a block of guest rooms for conference participants. The group room rate is $239. Make your reservation now for a room in the RSA Hilton block.

Book Discounts

Members are offered a discount on books from the University of Chicago Press, publisher of Renaissance Quarterly, and from Ashgate Press. Visit the Member Subscriptions page (sign in required) for more information and discount codes.

Submit your News

Post your news, announcements, calls for papers and others events on the RSA website.
Calendar Events

Renaissance News & Notes
The Renaissance Society of America
CUNY, Graduate Center
365 Fifth Avenue, Rm. 5400
New York, NY 10016-4309
Phone: 212-817-2130
Fax: 212-817-1544
Twitter bird logoFollow @RSAorg on Twitter
Facebook white on blue f logoLike us on Facebook

RNN is published biannually (Winter and Autumn). Members receive it as part of their membership. Members will also find on the site an archive of past issues of RNN. RNN is produced by Maura Kenny and Erika Suffern.

New York 2014: Our Biggest Ever

by Ann E. Moyer, Executive Director

By the time you read this, the 2014 conference schedule will be available online for all to peruse, to correct, and to share. We had been awaiting confirmation on additional space at the Warwick Hotel, now our second conference hotel along with the Hilton, before we posted it. This conference will mark RSA’s 60th year, and it is certainly appropriate to celebrate it in the city in which the Society was founded.

This annual meeting will offer an unprecedented occasion to catch up on the work of friends and colleagues, to network, and to check out recent publications. It will be our biggest conference ever, with at least three thousand in attendance and some 750 sessions (yes, really, 750 sessions). This enormous response to the call for papers took us all a bit by surprise; the space reserved a number of years ago was not, unsurprisingly, quite up to the task of hosting a conference this size. Due to the limitations of space we will be returning to our Washington experiment of a 5-session day, which keeps the number of concurrent sessions to 50. As you may notice in the online program, every effort has been made to schedule sessions on similar topics one after the other in a series. We also tried to cluster similar fields near one another — most literature sessions are at the Warwick, for example — to minimize the distances we will all need to cover in our efforts to catch papers in two different but concurrent sessions. Our Local Arrangements Committee is working away to set up a range of special events. Of course, New York itself offers no end of attractions, Renaissance related and otherwise. Be sure to register and make your reservations early; we expect the hotels to fill quickly.

The summer has been busy with other projects as well, one of them being RSA 2015 in Berlin. We will be hosted by the Humboldt University, in the historic Mitte district next to Museum Island. The distinguished university setting will be matched by receptions in some of Berlin’s most esteemed museums, all in a vibrant, cosmopolitan city that had a vital role in the development of Renaissance studies. My own planning visit there left such an impression that it was a bit difficult to return home to continue planning for 2014. So as you work on presentations and make travel plans for New York, you’ll want to be thinking ahead to 2015.

You will also continue to see new grant opportunities and member benefits, both this fall and in the new year. We will begin to award three Paul Oskar Kristeller grants in December thanks to your donations and support. We hope to have additional residential grant opportunities in place for 2014.

return to top


by Amanda Wunder (CUNY, Lehman College and the Graduate Center)
Chair, Local Arrangements Committee for New York City

This spring the RSA Annual Meeting will take place 27–29 March 2014 in New York City. The cutting-edge metropolis of New York is also, of course, historically an early modern city, and Manhattan is rich in Renaissance art and artifacts. The conference organizers will be arranging a number of behind-the-scenes tours of libraries and museums for RSA members. Here, though, are some selections of the many cultural offerings and research opportunities in the city that you may wish to add to your own itinerary.

New York offers many unique resources for scholars, whatever your discipline or specialization. The New York Public Library — with its accessible collections of Renaissance prints, printed books, and manuscripts — is a 10-minute bus ride (or 15-20 minute walk) down Fifth Avenue from the conference headquarters at the New York Hilton Midtown. Travel a bit further afield, and you’ll find specialized collections whose gracious spaces are often gems in their own right. For historians of the book, there are over a hundred thousand books about books at the Grolier Club Library. At the Frick Library, art historians can pore over research files on individual artists and the latest scholarly publications amidst fresh flowers and Francesco Guardi’s eighteenth-century views of Venice. The library of the Hispanic Society of America is the largest collection of Spanish-language rare books and manuscripts outside of Spain. The Coller Rare Book Reading Room at the New York Academy of Medicine holds a specialized collection of works on medicine and public health published between the fifteenth and eighteenth centuries. It is located on Fifth Avenue and 103rd Street, just across the street from Central Park’s lovely Conservatory Garden, which is composed of three distinctive gardens in the English, French, and Italian styles. All of these collections are open to professional researchers, but it’s a good idea to make arrangements ahead of time.

Image of the Rare Book Room at the New York Academy of Sciences Library, a room lined with wooden bookcases, tables, and catalogs

Image courtesy of the Coller Rare Book Reading Room, New York Academy of Medicine Library

Thanks to the barons of the Gilded Age, New York is home to exquisite collections of Renaissance paintings, drawings, furnishings, tapestries, and even architecture. This spring there will be a special exhibition of Renaissance and Baroque bronzes at the Frick Collection, while the Morgan Library and Museum will be hosting its first exhibit of Spanish drawings. Admission to the Morgan is free on Friday evenings, when you can enjoy classical music, cocktails, and hors d’oeuvre at the café. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (which recently traded in its beloved tin buttons for admissions stickers) is also open late on Friday and Saturday evenings (until 9 p.m.), with a bar and piano music on the second floor balcony. The Met’s European Paintings Galleries have reopened after a major renovation that has placed 250 more pictures on the walls in significantly expanded gallery space, which makes old favorites look new. The brand-new gallery of Dutch decorative arts, lined with rare embossed leather wall-coverings, brings to life the intimate interiors familiar from Vermeer and Ter Borsch; the Italian galleries newly integrate maiolica and furnishings along with portraits to evoke domestic life in the Renaissance.

The treasures of Upper Manhattan are easily accessible on the leisurely M4 bus (catch it on Madison Ave.), which will take you from midtown all the way up Broadway to the medieval wing of the Metropolitan Museum at the Cloisters (though the subway will get you there much more quickly). Along the way is the Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine, close to the campus of Columbia University, which has a stunning collection of European tapestries and provides an atmospheric setting for choral music concerts. On Broadway at 155th Street, you exit modern-day New York and enter old Spain at the museum of the Hispanic Society. At the end of the line, the Cloisters is set in Ft. Tryon park, where the spectacular views of the Palisades State Park across the Hudson River is probably as close as you can get to seeing New York as it would have appeared before Dutch eyes in the seventeenth century.

New York has been transformed for residents and tourists in the last few years by urban planning ideas long familiar from European cities, with pedestrian streets and a bicycle-sharing program. Even if you’ve been to New York many times before, this spring you will find many new ways of seeing the city: on the ground from the pedestrianized stretches of Broadway, high above from the elevated tracks of the High Line, or rolling by on one of the blue Citi Bikes. We’ll help you make the most of your visit by providing practical information on local dining and transportation, plus a guide to the countless museum exhibits, period music concerts, theatrical performances, and other events of special interest to RSA members.

return to top

Plenaries, Awards, and Special Events for New York 2014

Wednesday, 26 March
6:00–7:00 p.m.
Opening Reception
Location: New York Hilton Midtown
Thursday, 27 March
7:00–8:30 p.m.
Margaret Mann Phillips Lecture
Sponsor: Erasmus of Rotterdam Society
Organizer: Eric Macphail, Indiana University
Location: New York Hilton Midtown

Paul J. Smith, Leiden University
Folly Goes French: French Translations of the Praise of Folly in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries

The early modern French translations of Erasmus’s Praise of Folly show an astonishing adaptability to its ever-changing readership. Recently much attention has been given to the two sixteenth-century translations (1518 and 1520); however, the three French translations of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries are less known. The 1642 version addresses preclassicist readers, adepts of Richelieu’s newly founded Académie Française, while the 1671 version appeals to the Parisian salons. Nicolas Gueudeville’s 1713 translation went through twenty-two editions, in which its language is refined according to the rules of bienséance, and Vianen’s illustrations, inspired by Holbein’s famous drawings, are replaced by Charles Eisen’s elegant figures, dressed in the latest fashion. Although she changed names (Moria/Stultitia–Dame Sottise–Dame Folie), language (from humanist Latin to Parisian French), appearance and attire (from Holbein to Eisen), Folly remains much the same through the ages — everlasting and omnipresent, just as the vices she laughs at.

Friday, 28 March
7:00–8:30 p.m.
Plenary Session: Current Trends in Digital Humanities
Sponsor: The Renaissance Society of America
Location: New York Hilton Midtown
Organizer: Martin Elsky, CUNY, Brooklyn College and The Graduate Center
Saturday, 29 March
6:30–7:00 p.m.
RSA Annual Membership Meeting
Location: New York Hilton Midtown
All RSA members are invited
Saturday, 29 March
7:00–7:30 p.m.
Awards Ceremony
Location: New York Hilton Midtown

Paul Oskar Kristeller Lifetime Achievement Award
Phyllis Goodhart Gordan Book Prize
William Nelson Prize

Saturday, 29 March
7:30–8:30 p.m.
Josephine Waters Bennett Lecture
Sponsor: Renaissance Society of America
Location: New York Hilton Midtown

William E. Wallace, Washington University in St. Louis
"Certain of Death”: Michelangelo’s Late Life and Art

What do we know about the final eighteen years of Michelangelo Buonarroti’s life? From his appointment as architect of St. Peter’s in 1546 through his death in 1564, Michelangelo completed no further sculptures. He took on nearly a dozen architectural projects, personally supervising half of them, but completing none in his lifetime. He lived with the constant expectation of death. I will examine the seeming paradox of an artist who, despite a plethora of incomplete endeavors, only increased his stature and authority, and extended his influence over the art and architecture of his time. Rather than the entrepreneurial artist of his earlier career, the elder Michelangelo astutely cultivated powerful patrons, influential bureaucrats, and a few trusted companions to realize his vision, remaining ever mindful of his legacy, the salvation of his soul, and the perpetuation of his family.

Saturday, 29 March
8:30–10:00 p.m.
Closing Reception
Sponsor: The Renaissance Society of America
Location: New York Hilton Midtown

return to top

Research Grants for Members of the Renaissance Society of America

The RSA will award the following grants in 2014: six Residential Grants in partnership with other institutions, five Samuel H. Kress Grants in Art History, three RSA Paul Oskar Kristeller Grants, one RSA Rensselaer W. Lee Memorial Grant in Art History, and nine Renaissance Society of America Grants, for a total of twenty-four grants. Each of the grants has particular eligibility and application requirements. In any given year an applicant may apply for grant support for a single project. Applicants may apply for only one RSA Residential Grant per year, plus any other grant type for which they meet the eligibility requirements.

RSA offers six residential grants: one each at the Bodleian Library at Oxford University; at the Giorgio Cini Center in Venice, Italy; at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC; at the Newberry Library in Chicago, IL; at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA; and at the CRRS Centre at Victoria University in the University of Toronto.

There are five Samuel H. Kress Foundation Grants in Renaissance Art History, open to art historians at the level of Younger or Senior Scholar; that is, applicants for the Kress Foundation Grants must hold the doctorate at the time of application. These grants are intended especially to support the costs of publication in the history of art, but in some cases may be awarded for research travel costs for art history projects.

The Renaissance Society of America will award up to nine RSA Research Grants. RSA Research Grants are available to applicants in all disciplines and topics dealing with the Renaissance. RSA also awards two named grants: one Rensselaer W. Lee Grant in Art History and three Paul Oskar Kristeller Grants.

Submitters at the non-doctoral rank must be members of RSA for at least one year at the time of application plus renew membership for the grant year. All other applicants must be members of RSA for at least three years at the time of application plus renew membership for the grant year. In addition, all applicants must renew RSA membership for the following calendar year (2014).

Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. The scholarly quality of the proposal (scope, theoretical framework, and grounding in the relevant scholarly literature) and the project’s potential to make a significant and original contribution to knowledge about the Renaissance.
  2. The scholarly record and achievements of the applicant.
  3. The demonstrated need for access to research materials and the feasibility of accomplishing this research in the given time frame; or the worthiness of the project for publication support, in the case of Kress Grants only.

Application deadline: 16 December 2013

Grants will be awarded in February 2014. Successful applicants must agree to complete the proposed research within 12 months of the award, and submit to RSA a brief report indicating the accomplishments of the grant and including a budget that shows that all funds were spent. Residential grants recipients must report within one month of completing the residency and no more than 18 months after receiving the award.

Please see the grants page on the RSA website for eligibility requirements, application materials, descriptions of specific grants, and to submit an application.

return to top

Associate Organization News

RSA Welcomes Four New Associate Organizations

The Centro di Studi Medievali e Rinascimentali Emmanuele Antonio Cicogna, Venice

by Angela Caracciolo Aricò

The Centro di Studi Medievali e Rinascimentali is named after Emmanuele Antonio Cicogna (1789–1868). A distinguished scholar and bibliophile from Venice, Cicogna dedicated his life to recovering and studying codices and editions concerning medieval and modern culture, with special regard to the Venetian milieu. Throughout his life he set up an imposing library, comprising 40,000 volumes and 5,000 manuscripts, which considerably enlarged the book stock of Venice’s Museo Civico Library.

Our Centro Studi is currently supporting the publication of critical editions of texts in Latin and Italian written between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries, along with repertories of manuscript sources for the history of Venice. Moreover, the Centro Cicogna promotes the collection and publication of essays, letters, and other writings of prominent nineteenth- and twentieth-century Renaissance scholars such as Paul Oskar Kristeller and Giuseppe Billanovich. Much in the spirit of its namesake, therefore, our association will provide the RSA and its members with an important connection with the archives and intellectual community of Venice, while offering hands-on advice to researchers interested in Venetian history and literature.

Scientific Committee: Prof. Giampiero Bellingeri, Università "Ca’ Foscari,” Venezia; Dr. Carlo Campana, Responsabile Ufficio Archivi Storici of Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana; Prof. Linda Carroll, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA, USA; Prof. Marc Deramaix, Université de Rouen, President de la Société Française des Etudes Médio et Néo-Latines; Prof. Michael Knapton, Università degli Studi di Udine; George Labalme, Gladys Krieble Delmas and Jean Paul Delmas Foundation, New York; Prof. James S. Grubb, University of Maryland Baltimore County; Prof. Laura Sanguineti White, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA; Gian Antonio Stella, writer, "Corriere della Sera” columnist; Stefano Trovato, Biblioteca Nazionale Marciana; Roberto Zago, researcher at Archivio di Stato di Venezia; and Maria Francesca Tiepolo, former director of Archivio di Stato di Venezia.

Collaborators: Prof. Santiago Arroyo, Dr. Lorenzo Bernardinello, Dr. Giulia Beraldo, Dr. Duan Fabbris, Dr. Chiara Frison, Dr. Marina Galletti, Prof. Roberto Pesce, Dr. Bruno Zanon.

The Center also announces the publication of:
Chiara Frison, ed. Branca veneto: Studi e testi sulla cultura veneta e veneziana. Introduction by Angela Caracciolo Aricò. Venice: Centro di Studi Medievali e Rinascimentali E. A. Cicogna, 2013.

Bibliographical Society of America

by Caroline Duroselle-Melish

The Bibliographical Society of America (BSA) is the oldest scholarly society in North America dedicated to the study of books and manuscripts as physical objects. Its principal objectives are to promote research into the history of printed books and manuscripts, encompassing the history of printing, publishing, graphic arts, binding, and the book trade, and to support descriptive and analytical bibliographical studies. The Society promotes bibliographical publications through a broad array of activities, including meetings, lectures, and fellowship programs, as well as the publishing of books and the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, North America’s leading bibliographical journal. The Society is open to all those interested in bibliographical problems and projects, and its membership includes bibliographers, librarians, professors, booksellers, students, and collectors worldwide.

BSA funds short-term fellowships of one or two months to support bibliographical projects as well as research in the history of the book trades and in publishing history. In addition, it sponsors the New Scholars Program, which funds early-career scholars to deliver papers on bibliographical topics at a forum immediately preceding the BSA annual meeting.

BSA’s journal, the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, is published quarterly and features articles and reviews on a rich variety of bibliographical and book history topics.

The BSA maintains an active publishing program and is responsible for many landmark bibliographical publications. Among these are Margaret Stillwell’s second and Frederick Goff’s third Census of Incunabula in American Libraries (1940, 1964), as well as the Supplement to Goff (1972), and C. U. Faye and W. H. Bond’s Supplement to the Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada (1962).

RSA members are encouraged to visit the website of the Bibliographical Society of America and to inquire about the various activities of the Society at

return to top

American Boccaccio Association

by Michael Papio

The American Boccaccio Association was founded in 1974 at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, during the conference to commemorate the sixth centenary of Petrarch’s death: Francesco Petrarca, Citizen of the World. It has been in continual existence ever since. The Association’s chief purposes, as stated in the inaugural constitution and in its three subsequent revisions, the last of which was ratified in 2012, include: "the encouragement of Boccaccio studies among American scholars, regardless of their particular disciplines; the establishment of a permanent Boccaccio Studies Center; the hosting of the annual Boccaccio Studies Forum; the publication of a newsletter as a clearing-house of information and communication for Boccaccisti; the sponsoring of a journal of Boccaccio scholarship, consisting of studies, abstracts and reviews.” With the exception of the establishment of a Boccaccio Studies Center, the Association has successfully attained all of these goals and, indeed, is currently more productive than at any other time in its history.

The American Boccaccio Association is proud to join the Renaissance Society this year as an official affiliated organization. The ABA currently has approximately 75 members. Members pay annual dues at a relatively low rate ($25/yr), which gives them access to the semiannual newsletter (featuring a digest of past and upcoming events of interest to Boccaccio scholars as well as a yearly bibliography in review) and to all other Association activities, including voting, committee work, and policy formation. Participants in ABA-sponsored sessions at conventions, of which there are typically between 2 and 5 each year, must also be members in good standing of the Association. Membership is open to graduate students, professors, and independent scholars who are actively pursuing work on Giovanni Boccaccio, both in the United States and abroad.

Iter: Gateway to the Middle Ages and Renaissance

by William Bowen

The genesis of Iter goes back almost twenty years when a group of colleagues considered the use of new technologies to provide more timely and powerful access to scholarly bibliography than was possible through traditional print publication. The animated conversation during the formative years saw incorporation of a partnership in September 1997 and a commitment to a bold mandate: "Iter, meaning a journey or a path in Latin, is a not-for-profit partnership dedicated to the advancement of learning in the study and teaching of the Middle Ages and Renaissance (400–1700) through the development and distribution of online resources.”

Much has happened since those early days. Iter’s bibliographical database, our first major project, has grown tremendously not only in numbers (currently over 1.2 million records) but also in materials covered (e.g., from articles, essays and books to reviews, encyclopedia entries and dissertation abstracts). We have added other databases, beginning with online distribution of Kristeller’s Iter Italicum (Brill) in 2002.

Thereafter we expanded our program by moving beyond databases, first by providing online distribution services to journals such as Early Theatre, Renaissance and Reformation / Renaissance et Réforme, and Early Modern Women: An Interdisciplinary Journal. This led in turn to a range of distribution and copublication agreements for series of books. These include, for example, New Technologies in Medieval and Renaissance Studies (with ACMRS) and The Other Voice: The Toronto Series (with CRRS).

While development of all of these programs continues at a lively pace, of late our conversation has turned to Iter’s potential role in facilitating more informal scholarly communication and in supporting social knowledge creation. This direction is signaled in our recent partnership with other digital humanities groups (e.g., INKE), the forthcoming copublication of "The Devonshire Manuscript: A Social Edition” and the complete reworking of Iter Community as a collaboratory integrated with Iter’s other resources and services.

Through all of this, let me recall that the RSA is a founding partner of Iter and that specific initiatives mentioned above owe much to the RSA’s leadership. Now, by welcoming Iter as an Associate Organization, Iter will officially sponsor the longstanding and robust series of panels on new technologies at the RSA’s annual conference and explore new opportunities.

return to top

News Items from Associate Organizations

Roma nel Rinascimento

The association announces their international conference, which will take place in Rome, 3–5 December 2013. The complete program will appear on the site of Roma nel Rinascimento in September. The title of the conference is: Congiure e Conflitti: L’affermazione della signoria pontificia su Roma nel Rinascimento: politica, economia e cultura

The association announces the publication of a new book edited by Roma nel Rinascimento:

Donne del Rinascimento a Roma e dintorni, edited by Anna Esposito, Rome 2013. It can be ordered online on the site.

Margaret Cavendish Society

The last biennial meeting of the society was in July of 2013 at Sundance in Utah and was hosted by Professor Brandie Siegfried of Brigham Young University. The next meeting will be hosted by Dr. Michael Paraskos at the Cornaro Institute in Larnaca on Cyprus in June or July of 2015 (exact date to be set). Please visit the society website for further information.


The Grupo de estudios sobre la mujer en España and las Américas pre-1800 (Gemela) will hold their biennial conference 11–13 September 2014, hosted by Vanda Anastacio at the University of Lisbon. To view the cfp (available in November) please see the Gemela website or contact Dana Bultman at

Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Saint Louis University

CMRS announces the Call for Papers for the 2014 CMRS Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies, which will be held at Saint Louis University 16-18 June 2014. Plenary speakers will be John W. Baldwin (Johns Hopkins) and Robert Hillenbrand (University of Edinburgh). The deadline to submit paper, session, and roundtable proposals is 31 December 2013. The CFP and submission form are available at the symposium website:

Allegorica will publish selected peer-reviewed essays chosen from papers presented at the annual Symposium on Medieval and Renaissance Studies hosted by the Saint Louis University Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. The next volume will include papers from the 2013 symposium.

The new editor of the journal is Sara van den Berg. Volumes 27 (2011) and 28 (2012) contain essays in memory of Thomas Moisan, the late editor. Each volume features 9 essays by distinguished scholars.

Massachusetts Center for Renaissance Studies at UMass-Amherst

The Center announces its special faculty appointments for the autumn of 2013. Lynn Magnusson and Paul Stevens, both of the University of Toronto, will be in residence 21–25 October 2013. Craig Kallendorf (Texas A&M) is the Classical Legacy lecturer in residence 18–21 November 2013. Susan Cerasano (Colgate) will be the keynote speaker at the graduate student conference on 19 October 2013.

Taiwan Association of Classical, Medieval, and Renaissance Studies (TACMRS)

The 2013 TACMRS International Conference "Passions for Learning: Forms of Knowledge, Forms of Acquisition" is to be held 25–26 October 2013 at the National Changhua University of Education, Changhua, Taiwan. The International Conference is sponsored and administered by TACMRS. Since its inception in 2007, the TACMRS conference has established itself as an annual event with an attendance of a small, exclusive group of scholars specializing in classical, medieval, and Renaissance studies in Taiwan and all over the world. The 2013 TACMRS conference seeks to provide an interdisciplinary forum for the discussion of all aspects of classical, medieval, and Renaissance studies. Papers and panel sessions will focus on the acquisition of knowledge and Chinese-Western cultural exchanges before 1800.

Society for Confraternity Studies

The SCS announces the publication of an essay collection that explores forms of social kinship across various boundaries of religion, gender, and locality. It includes articles on Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, and Aboriginal confraternities and on groups in North and South Europe, Latin America, Central Asia, and South East Asia. The various essays explore intersections of politics, charity, civil society, and lay religion with the larger question here being how relations between laity and clergy are increasingly contested in the early modern period:

Nicholas Terpstra, Adrian Prosperi, and Stefania Pastore, eds., Faith’s Boundaries: Laity and Clergy in Early Modern Confraternities (Turnhout: Brepols, 2012).

Cervantes Society of America

Call for Papers: National Cervantes Symposium 2014: New Currents in Cervantes Studies (24–26 April 2014)

To be held at the University of Illinois at Chicago, this symposium gives priority to new currents in, and the rethinking of existing approaches to, the writings and contexts of Miguel de Cervantes. Participants are expected to present unpublished or otherwise not widely disseminated work. To facilitate an informed and lively exchange of ideas, there will only be plenary sessions. The keynote speaker will be the distinguished Cervantes biographer and scholar, Jean Canavaggio, Professor Emeritus in Hispanic Literatures at the University of Paris X-Nanterre.

Proposals of not more than 200 words are invited for (1) individual 20-minute presentations in either English or Spanish, or (2) one-hour roundtables with four interlocutors, all of whom must be specified.

Deadline for submission of proposals: 1 November 2013.

Proposals must include (1) the names, professional standing, and institutional affiliations of all speakers, (2) the title of the paper or roundtable, and (3) a detailed abstract or rationale. These should be sent to both conference organizers: Professor Rosilie Hernández ( and Professor Adrienne Martin ( with the subject heading CERVANTES SYMPOSIUM 2014 ABSTRACT.

Southeastern Renaissance Conference

The 70th annual meeting of the Southeastern Renaissance Conference will be held on 1–2 November 2013, at Duke University in Durham, NC. We have promise of a colorful fall, warm hospitality from our hosts — George Williams, Joe Porter, and their colleagues at Duke — and an exciting gathering of Renaissance scholars from across the country.

All activities for this year’s conference will take place in the same venue: The R. David Thomas Executive Conference Center, Fuqua School of Business, on the campus of Duke University. Sessions at the conference include: Contrary Commonwealths, The Poetics of Reinvention, Technologies of the Self, and Rereading Shakespeare.

For further information regarding the conference and the Southeastern Renaissance Conference, please contact Emily Stockard, Associate Professor of English, Florida Atlantic University,

Italian Art Society

Submitted by Sheryl E. Reiss, Italian Art Society Executive Vice President and Associate Organization Representative to the RSA

The Italian Art Society (IAS) currently seeks paper proposals for the annual IAS-Kress Lecture Series in Italy, which will take place in Pisa on 29 May or 16 June 2014 (deadline: 4 January 2014). The distinguished scholar selected will speak on a topic related to art of any period from Pisa or Tuscany and will receive an honorarium and a supplementary lecture allowance. We thank Sarah Blake McHam (Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey) who spoke to a full house as our Fourth Annual Lecture speaker on "Laocoön, or Pliny Vindicated” at the Fondazione Marco Besso (in Rome) on 28 May 2013.

The IAS is pleased to provide Travel Grants to graduate students and recent PhD recipients presenting conference papers about the art and architecture of Italy (deadline: 1 November 2013). In addition, the 2014 competition for the IAS/Kress Travel grant is now open. US or foreign scholars traveling internationally to present papers in IAS-sponsored sessions are eligible to apply (deadline: 7 October 2013). The Second Annual IAS Research and Publication Grant (deadline: 1 November 2013) will be offered to a scholar of Italian art from any period who seeks support for costs related to research and publication. For details on the application requirements for the Lecture Series, Travel, and Publication Grants, please visit the IAS website.

As part of its outreach activities, the IAS is providing partial support for an informal study day to accompany the exhibition "Face to Face: Flanders, Florence, and Renaissance Painting,” on view 28 September 2013 to 13 January 2014 at the Huntington Art Gallery in San Marino, California.

Finally, the IAS has a new Italian art blog by IAS webmaster Anne Leader. To stay current, please visit the website, like IAS on Facebook, and follow IAS on Twitter (@ItalianArtSoc). RSA members are warmly encouraged to join the IAS. Following the great success of this year’s RSA get-together in San Diego, a similar event is being planned for New York in 2014.

UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies

UCLA Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies presents the symposium "Body and Soul, Image and Word: Emblems from the Renaissance to the Present,” on Friday, 15 November 2013 at UCLA. Paolo Giovio’s Dialogo dell’imprese militari e amorose (1555) set forth the book as the medium par excellence for emblems, which fostered the perception — in part through the simplified drawings such books contained — that emblems were simply abstract and intangible. Yet these devices have an influence beyond books and printed matter as they appeared on paintings, sculptures, jewelry, arms and armor, and textiles, and played an integral role in triumphal parades, wedding celebrations, and in representations depicting these public events, proclaiming the political and dynastic allegiances of the participants. In religious settings, emblems served didactic and homiletic purposes. Inspired by literature, philosophy, hieroglyphic and biblical hermeneutics, emblems represent a visual and verbal distillation of art. To understand and appreciate the symbology of these devices this symposium takes an interdisciplinary approach drawing upon the perspectives of art history, literary theory, and semiotic analysis to explore the nature of emblems as polysemic and multifunctional works of art from the Renaissance to the present day.

Society of Emblem Studies

The Tenth International Conference of the Society for Emblem Studies will take place in Kiel, Germany at the Kunsthistorisches Institut der Christian-Albrechts-Universität Kiel, from Monday 28 July to Friday 1 August, 2014. The conference will devote itself to the entire spectrum of emblem. In addition to a traditional focus on emblem books, the conference will focus on four thematic clusters: The Domains of the Emblem: Changes in Medium, History of Emblem Research, Digitization and Documentation, and Text and Image Combinations in Modern Art.

The National Endowment for the Humanities, in conjunction with the University of Illinois, is funding the second stage of Emblematica Online, which will build an authoritative virtual collection of emblematica, in support of humanities scholarship and pedagogy. Emblematica Online II will bring collections of important libraries online, offer advanced research tools, and preserve early modern emblem books. For more information, see:

The Society for Emblem Studies was founded at the International Congress on Medieval Studies and has sponsored sessions on different aspects of emblem studies for over 35 years. SES-sponsored sessions on emblem studies and related fields are organized by Sabine Mödersheim (University of Wisconsin-Madison). The 49th International Congress on Medieval Studies takes place 8–11May 2014. The 50th International Congress on Medieval Studies takes place 14–17 May 2015. Email:

Renaissance Studies Certificate Program, CUNY

Renaissance Women Writers: The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe

2013 marks the twentieth anniversary of the initial conception of The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe series, edited by Margaret King and Albert Rabil, Jr., published from 1996 by The University of Chicago Press and then continued in 2009 by the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (CRRS) and Iter, both at the University of Toronto. To commemorate this event, three distinguished scholars who have contributed in a major way to the study of women in the Renaissance — Virginia Cox (Italian and Comparative Literature, New York University), Domna Stanton (French, CUNY, The Graduate Center), and Albert Rabil, Jr. (Co-Editor, The Other Voice Series, Chicago UP and CRRS/Iter) — will be speaking at the CUNY Graduate Center. The symposium will focus on the contribution made to the fields of French, Italian, English, and History, among other fields, by the series’ publication of over 124 titles by or about Renaissance women. More a roundtable discussion than a series of talks, this event should allow plenty of time for questions and interventions from the audience concerning the history and the future of these two important fields: Renaissance Studies and Women’s Studies. Admission is free and the event is open to the public. A reception will follow.

Renaissance Women: A Symposium on The Other Voice in Early Modern Europe
Friday, 4 October 2013, 2:00–4:00 p.m.
Room 9100
CUNY, The Graduate Center

Prato Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies

Prato Consortium for Medieval and Renaissance Studies was established in 2009 through a series of memoranda of understanding between Monash University’s Faculty of Arts and external partners. These include the universities of Warwick, Toronto, London (Queen Mary College), Edinburgh, Durham, and Arizona, along with the State Archives of Prato. The Director of the Monash Centre for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (Peter Howard) is the convenor of the Consortium, which has as its home the Bill Kent Library at the Monash University Centre at Prato Italy. The Consortium aims to facilitate the pooling of expertise and skills to enhance teaching, graduate training and research in medieval and renaissance studies. An annual meeting in the second week of December provides the forum to ensure that its aims are furthered.

The PCMRS members are currently committed to devising a common research project encompassing poverty and migration and movement of peoples (with key words such as vulnerability, charity, religion, medicine, hospitals, confraternities, politics). The theme utilizes the research strength of partners and will focus on the resources of the Archivio di Stato di Prato, though the context will be comparative. While the Consortium sponsors sessions annually at the RSA’s annual meeting, in 2015 (Berlin), the joint project will be the focus of its sessions.

return to top
The Renaissance Society of America | CUNY, Graduate Center | 365 Fifth Ave, Rm. 5400 | New York, NY 10016-4309