Mittwoch, 07. November 2018, 18:00 - 20:00 iCal

Creating and Contesting

Matthew Canepa

Creating and Contesting the Imperial Infrastructures of Authority in Late Antiquity

Keynote Lecture of the Conference 'Establishing, Defending, and Representing Authority in Late Antiquity'

Erika-Weinzierl Saal, Uni Hauptgebäude, 1. Stock
Universitätsring 1, 1010 Wien


Keynote and Opening Lecture of the Conference 'Establishing, Defending, and Representing Authority in Late Antiquity'

7-9 Nov 2018


Late Antiquity was a time of social, political, and cultural change. The authorities and powers which emerged during this period came to influence and control the lives of people through religion, political ideology, and scholarship. The aim of the conference “Establishing, Defending, and Representing Authority in Late Antiquity” is to take a closer look at the processes through which these new authorities and powers emerged and the ways in which they were consolidated and expressed in the political, social and intellectual spheres. The conference also seeks to pose such questions as: Can we observe similarities in the establishment of authority in these spheres, or are there instead different methods, strategies and approaches unique to each of them? How do imperial and clerical powers arise? In what way are these powers legitimized and represented? How do holy men acquire spiritual authority during their lifetimes and how, by contrast, do theologians and philosophers posthumously obtain status as authorities through their writings as, for example, the church fathers? By which means are those beliefs established as orthodox defended and distinguished from heresies? How do secular and sacred texts attain canonical status? What roles do force and constraint play in implementing authoritative power? We hope to address these and similar questions within a geographical sphere extending from Iran in the east to the Mediterranean in the west and from Ḥimyar and Aksum in the south to Armenia in the north. The timeframe is the period from the fourth to the eighth century, though extensions in both directions will be allowed where necessary.

Zur Webseite der Veranstaltung


Institut für Orientalistik; Institut für Byzantinistik und Neogräzistik


Elvira Wakelnig
Institut für Orientalistik