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RSA Online 2022, Transcultural Things in Central and Eastern Europe | Call for Papers


Anthropology Cultural studies Ethnology History Media studies Other Slavic studies Sociology


Area studies Central and Eastern Europe Cultural anthropology Cultural heritage Popular culture Public history


Early modern Central and Eastern Europe was a multiethnic, multiconfessional, and multilingual realm, where a member of one community could easily claim a sense of belonging to another, navigating intersecting identities and personal biographies, and often merging and converging cultures associated with different regions and communities. Often labelled transculturation, this process of gathering and coming together of various forms of cultural expression, first theorized by Cuban anthropologist Fernando Ortiz, results in transformative changes which alter societies as they adopt new kinds of objects and materials into their way of life. These transcultural forms are subject to cultural recontextualisations; they often take up other forms, acquire news uses, and change meanings, all the while reversing, upending, translating, surprising, and reappropriating local lifestyles and traditions. Habanerware, Transylvanian carpets, Polish costume, Siberian pelts, and Rudolf II’s collections are some of the region’s best examples of transcultural forms appropriated into local life. To encourage further research in this field, the scholarly networks “Collecting Central Europe,” and “Connected Central European Worlds, 1500-1700,” seek papers that explore the complex entanglements of foreign and local, theories of mobility, and previously overlooked types of objects from the region of Europe that stretches from the Baltic to the Adriatic, and from the Rhine to the Danube and the Dnipro.

Topics might include (but are not limited to) the following themes: 

  • Transcultural objects and images
  • Mobility of materials
  • Networks
  • Diasporas
  • Collections
  • Historiography of transculturation in the region 

Please send a 150-word abstract, a curriculum vitae no longer than 5 pages, and the PhD completion date (as per the new RSA guidelines) to Andrea Gáldy (, Suzanna Ivanič (, and Tomasz Grusiecki ( before Sunday, 29 May 2022. Presenters will have to be active Renaissance Society of America (RSA) members at the time of the conference.

Further details

Tomasz Grusiecki
Pol-Int team

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