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Early Modern Interdisciplinary Graduate Forum III

November 12, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

The Early Modern Interdisciplinary Graduate Forum (EMIGF) is a monthly event hosted by the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (CRRS) at the University of Toronto. EMIGF is a platform for PhD candidates, post-docs, fellows, and recent graduates to deliver papers in an informal setting. Our mandate is to provide junior and emerging scholars with the opportunity to present work in progress, and to facilitate dialogue on current topics in early modern research across the disciplines. EMIGF meetings are well attended by graduate students, faculty, and fellows from the early modern community at the University of Toronto and beyond. Our third meeting for 2019-2020 will be held on Tuesday, November 12th from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the Victoria University Common Room, Burwash Hall (89 Charles Street West, rear entrance).


Eric Pecile Department of History, University of Toronto
“To The Poor’s Credit: Numeracy, Credit, and Florence’s Monte di Pietà”

In 1495 Florence founded its Monte di Pietà, a crediting institution designed to offer low interest credit to the poor. After a turbulent first year, the institution grew rapidly taking in roughly 1000 pawns within its first five years to nearly half a million pawns by 1551. This five hundred-fold growth rate reflects a culmination of trends in economic thinking that began during the Commercial Revolution of the thirteenth century. Numeracy greatly increased across Europe with the adoption of Arabic numerals and Italy’s city-states developed appropriate training infrastructure to sustain increasingly complex commerce. By offering pawns and savings accounts to the poor, the Monte facilitated the active practice of these numeric lessons, showing how Florence in the sixteenth century was a community with a high degree of financial competency thanks to the broad reach of its financial institutions.

Noam Lior PhD, Centre for Drama, Theatre & Performance Studies, University of Toronto
“From Home – The Dutch Courtesan in Toronto 2019″

In early modern usage, the preposition “from,” like its Latin cognate “de,” is a double-edged term, connoting both connection and disconnection, a point of origin and a point of departure. John Marston’s city comedy The Dutch Courtesan is concerned with movement and circulation – of people, of objects, of money, of disease. Like many city comedies (and like many cities), the play is both excited and anxious about “from”-ness, about who is local and who is not, how each navigate the city, and how each can be a source of comedy. The play is particularly concerned with language, accent, religion, and dress as markers of otherness in an urban setting, and our production attempted to find resonances between Marston’s 17th-century London and contemporary Toronto by exploring these questions with a multi-lingual and multi-cultural cast.


November 12, 2019
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Event Category:


Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies


Victoria University Common Room (Rear Entrance Burwash Hall)
89 Charles Street West
Toronto, Ontario M5S1K7 Canada
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