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Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies

Victoria University in the University of Toronto
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Global Reformations 2017

September 27 - September 30

Global Reformations 2017

Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies
Victoria College, University of Toronto
Toronto, Canada
27-30 September 2017






What is Reformation, and where? Who does it impact, and how? This conference invites a sustained, comparative, and interdisciplinary exploration of these questions. We are particularly interested in exploring global impacts and the many ways in which the Reformation movements (broadly conceived) shape relations of Christians with other Christians, and also with Muslims (Ottoman, North African, Iberian), with Jews, with Hindus and Buddhists, with aboriginal groups in the Americas, and with the animistic popular religions of Europe itself. How do these interfaith and cross-confessional relations shift under the impact of the religio-political changes that sweep rapidly across Europe from the fifteenth through the seventeenth centuries, particularly as they redraw borders and overturn long-established institutions? And how do these dynamics interrogate and overturn traditional approaches to centres & peripheries?

The early modern period saw a great increase in contacts between religious traditions. Many contacts were fraught with the tensions of alterity. All contacts generated new forms of accommodation, exclusion, communication, and exchange. Our interdisciplinary conference will explore the resulting cultural, historical, literary, and intellectual disruptions and convergences. We will probe the sharing that developed across confessional lines, and the unanticipated consequences that ripple out across the globe from the religious schisms in Europe. Many of these inter-faith contacts are driven by dynamics arising directly from the Reformation, and this is the theme we plan to explore in the conference.

This conference brings together urban and art historians, literary critics, social, intellectual, and religious historians, musicologists, book historians, and scholars researching the visual, plastic and performing arts. Together we will explore how the transmission and translation of material, textual and cultural practices create identity and cross-cultural identifications in contexts that are animated by the effort to reform, purify, or convert others.


Centre for Comparative Literature
Centre for Jewish Studies
Department of English
Department of History
Department of Italian Studies
Department of Spanish and Portuguese
Institute of Islamic Studies
St. Michael’s College
The Toronto Renaissance and Reformation Colloquium


Nicholas Terpstra

Natalie Oeltjen


September 27
September 30
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