Year in Review 2012-2013

The UC Mediterranean Studies Multi-Campus Research Project has completed an extremely successful thirdyear. Not only have we continued to carry out a rich program integrating faculty and graduate students from various UC campuses, we have broadened our collaborative base with US and foreign institutions, and scholars from a range of disciplines the world over. We now count some 650 scholars world-wide as affiliated members. We have organized a series of conferences, panels and workshops, and have submitted a proposal for our fourth NEH Summer Institute. A number of publications have resulted or are in process, including new research, theoretical work, and pedagogical material (notably an undergraduate textbook). We remainat the forefront of the emerging field of Mediterranean Studies, with our reputation firmly established on an international scale.

Core Program

In its third year of funding, the UC Mediterranean Studies MRP once again successfully carried out its coreprogram ofthree quarterly workshops, each organized around a special theme, rotating among UC campuses. Two of these were held in conjunction with a separate, thematically-related eventorganized by a representative at the host campus. Attendance was capped at 35 in order to accommodate the workshop format(although actual attendance exceeded this limit). Attendees at each of the three events consisted of a core of UC faculty and graduate students together with scholars from other local and national institutions.

  • Fall: “Excavating the Past,” UCSanta Barbara (November 9, 2012), co-organized withEdward English(UCSBHistory), andco-sponsored by the UCSBCenter for Medieval Studies. Plenary Speaker: Marcus Milwright, Art History, University of Victoria (Canada), “Archaeology and the Study of Traditional Urban Crafts in the Islamic Mediterranean”
  • Winter: “Gendering the Mediterranean,” UCLA(February 2, 2013),co-organized with Chris Chism (UCLA English), co-sponsored by CMRS, and heldin conjunction with the Annual Ahmanson Conference, “Cross-Cultural Encounters in the Medieval and Early Modern Mediterranean.”Plenary Speaker: Michael Herzfeld, Anthropology, Harvard University: “Gender, Geography, and the Imagining of the Mediterranean”
  • Spring: “The Mediterranean and Maritime Perspectives” UCSC(May 4, 2013), in conjunction with a conference/workshopof the same name (May 2–3), organized byMRP PI Sharon Kinoshitaand Brian Catlos. Plenary Speaker: William Granara, Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Harvard University:“Rethinking Pirenne: Facile Divides, Historical Complexities, and the Possibilities of Cross-cultural Conflict”

Complementary Programming

In 2012-13, the MRP’s major ancillary project was “Networks and Knowledge: Synthesis and Innovation in the Muslim-Christian-Jewish Medieval Mediterranean,” our third, and extremely successful NEH Summer Institute for University and College Professors (2–27 July, Barcelona, Spain) for which we secured a $199K grant, plus approximately $100K in in-kind support from outside institutions. Further, we co-sponsored “Domino Effects and Hybridization of the Mediterranean.”the 4th International Conference of Mediterranean Worlds, held at Mayis Universitesi, in Istanbul,5–7 September 2012, and sponsored two sessions at the 127th American Historical Association Annual Meeting in New Orleans(January 4) with the collaboration of the Medieval Academy of America.

The Year Ahead (2013-14)

Dates and venues for the upcoming academic year are in place or being confirmed: Fall (November 14–16) at UC Berkeley, in conjunction with a two-day conference on Translation, co-organized by Ignacio Navarrete and UCB Campus Rep Tom Dandalet with the collaboration of the Townsend Center for the Humanities; Winter (February 7–8) at San Francisco State, in conjunctionwith a one-day conference on Diplomacy, co-organized by Fred Astren (Jewish Studies SFSU); Spring (May 1-3) at Loyola Marymount University, co-organized by Andrew Devereux (History, Loyola Marymount) and in conjunction with a two-day event co-sponsored by the Spain-North Africa Project.

In addition, we have secured a place for two sessions at the 128thAnnual Meeting of the American Historical Association (January 2014, Washington DC), and have tendered an application for our fourth NEH Summer Institute, “Negotiating Identities: Expression and Representation in the Christian-Jewish-Muslim Mediterranean”($199K).

Outreach and Outside Collaboration

The Mediterranean Seminar/UCMRP continues to aggressively pursue opportunities for outside collaboration and new associates for our group. At present we have over 650 affiliated scholars worldwide and dozens of collaborating institutions and projects. In 2012–13, weintensified our collaborations with the Mediterranean initiatives at the Université de Paris I, the University of Exeter (UK), the University of the Eastern Mediterranean (Cyprus), and the University of Michigan –Ann Arbor. We have also continueddiscussions with Mediterranean groups at Harvard University,andthe CNRS in Naples. We anticipate new collaborations to be launched this year with the new Center for the Study of Conversion and Inter-Religious Encounters, directed by Harvey Hames (Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel), and with project “Power and Institutions in Medieval Islam and Christianity,” directed by Ana Rodríguez López (CSIC, Madrid). We have also begun talks to prepare to applyfor a major collaborative project in the digital Humanities in collaboration with the Université de Paris I, Université de Lyon, and CSIC Barcelona.

Project Output (2012-13)

Our strategy for research output remains that of facilitating the development oforiginal, cutting-edge interdisciplinary research published in the highest ranking peer-reviewed journals and academic houses. That said, our direct output includesour new monograph series, Mediterranean Studies (Palgrave MacMillan), The Sea in the Middle (aMediterranean history textbookwhich is going under contract with Bedford/ St. Martins), Can We Talk Mediterranean? (based on our Spring 2012 round-table, in progress), the Companion to Mediterranean History(co-edited by Kinoshita, in press at Blackwell), and Paradoxes of Plurality: Ethno-Religious Diversity in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean (a theoretical study by Catlos, in progress).