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CALL. 15.01.2016: Civilization and Its Opposite in Antiquity. 4th International Interdisciplinary Co



LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Institute of Near Eastern Studies - West-Bohemian University (Plzeň, Czech Republic)


- Institute of Ancient Near East, West-Bohemian University Plzen

- Institute of Comparative Linguistics, Charles University Prague

- Institute of Classical, Mediterranean and Oriental Studies, University of Wrocław

- Confucius Institute at the University of Wrocław, Poland

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Differentiating between “we” and “others”, “known” and “alien”, “familiar” or “strange”, finally “civilized” and “uncivilized” seems to accompany human race from the very beginning of, that’s the point, “civilization”. Many factors were also used to define this “civilization”, for the sake of separating from its opposite. The term “civilization” could take also various forms, and serve many different ideologies as well as political goals. What is especially interesting, this term seems to serve as the one of the best for the identification of the individual with the specified social group. Although being one of the most unspecified, it is the most unambiguous for such group’s members.

From the other hand, members of other groups, were very often presented, and defined, as “uncivilized”, what could be identical with “opposite”. Sometimes they were described as “strange”, “weird”, “ridiculous”, but these terms often led to being labelled as “dangerous”, “evil”, “inimical”, “sacrilegious”, “wild”, and so on.

That is why it would be very interesting to present, and discuss, what was believed to be the basics of civilization, and what was its opposite, throughout the ancient history, in the various cultures, from China in the East to Roman Empire in the West.

The most important topics of the conference should be as follows: - Basic factors considered as the core of civilization - Differences between “civilized” and “uncivilized” people - “Civilization” in the animal world – domesticated animals vs. wild ones - Image and role of “others” within the “civilized” societies - Image and role of “others” in the political discourse and state ideology - Habits, customs or taboos of “civilized” and “uncivilized” people - Common points and interrelationships of both in the countercultures

This conference will take a comparative approach, taking a wide geographical and chronological sweep. We warmly invite all scholars whose subject of study is the ancient world, including Greece, Rome, Egypt, Near East, India, and Far East (South-East Asia). We do invite philologists, historians, archaeologists, sociologists, and lawyers, hoping that this conference will be a forum for the wide range of specialists to exchange their ideas and results of researches.

The conference will be hosted by the Institute of Near Eastern Studies, West-Bohemian University in Plzen, Czech Republic on June 22th – 24th, 2016. The language of the conference is English. Proposals are now invited for individual papers or posters. Proposals must be attached as anonymous, and must not contain more than 300 words (in English). They can be submitted by 15th January 2016 to the conference

Proposals sent by doctoral students should be approved by their supervisors (not in the text of proposal, which must remain anonymous, but with supervisor’s address in CC field).

The proposals will be accepted after the revision made by the scientific committee by 28th February 2016. The final programme of the conference will be released by 31st of March 2016. Papers will be grouped in different sessions dedicated to the different regions of the ancient world. A poster session is also planned, unless there are fewer than 10 poster proposals sent and/or accepted.

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