Religious Violence in Antiquity: A Religious Studies Approach across the longue durée

Much like our world today, Late Antiquity (4th-7th centuries CE) is often seen as a period rife with religious violence, not least because our sources abound with stories of zealous Christians attacking temples, statues, and even adherents of the Graeco-Roman religions. This international workshop highlights recent cutting-edge insights from Religious Studies in order to promote more nuanced judgments about the nature of violence in this period. At the same time, the focus on Late Antiquity has taken away from the fact that the phenomenon was no less prevalent in the previous, Graeco-Roman world (7th century BCE-3rd century CE). To redress the balance, the workshop will therefore also for the first time bring together world-leading experts of both periods to comprehensively examine the phenomenon in all its complexity and diversity throughout Antiquity.

The conference will take place on September 28-30, 2017, and is jointly hosted by the Université de Montréal and the University of Ottawa. The workshop will be of a closed character, except for the opening and closing lectures, by Jan Bremmer (University of Groningen) and Hans Kippenberg (Jacobs University Bremen), which will be open to the public.

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The event is made possible due to the generous support of:

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council


German Embassy in Canada
Université de Montréal
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More information about the conference

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