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Hosts and Guests 2016

Valentina Duca invited by Adrian Pirtea (August–October 2016)


Valentina Duca and Adrian Pirtea

Adrian Pirtea holds a BA degree in History and English Philology (University of Bucharest, 2008), and MA degrees in Medieval History (Freie Universität Berlin, 2011) and Jewish Studies (Bucharest, 2012). Currently, he is a PhD student in Byzantine Studies at the Freie Universität Berlin (PhD supervisor: Prof. Dr. Johannes Niehoff-Panagiotidis). Adrian’s main research area is Christian mysticism in Late Antiquity and his thesis focuses on the concept of „spiritual perception“ in several Greek and Syriac Patristic authors.
Valentina Duca is a PhD student at The Oriental Institute (Wolfson College, Oxford), under the supervision of Prof. Dr. David Taylor. She previously obtained a BA in Religious Studies (La Sapienza, Rome, 2010) and a MPhil. in Eastern Christian Studies (Oxford, 2013). Valentina’s thesis addresses the problem of human suffering and vulnerability in the works of Isaac of Nineveh, a very influential 7th century Syriac theologian and mystic from Qatar.
Within the framework of the Dahlem Junior Host Program (September 2016), Adrian and Valentina will engage in a philosophical and philological analysis of two central, and interrelated concepts in Isaac’s writings: intellect/mind and the senses. They will thereby attempt to offer a reappraisal of the relationship between rationality and feeling in Late Antique Christian mysticism, a topic that is highly relevant for contemporary discussions in philosophy of religion and theology.

Aydogdy Kurbanov invited by Jana Eger, Ilia Heit and Birgül Ögüt (September–October 2016)


Aydogdy Kurbanov, Jana Eger, Ilia Heit and Birgül Ögüt

Jana Eger, Ilia Heit and Birgül Ögüt are carrying out a joint research on different key subjects of the archaeological project in Monjukli Depe at the Institute of Near Eastern Archaeology, Freie Universität Berlin. Jana Eger is a PhD candidate in the program „Landscape Archaeology and Architecture“ of the Berlin Graduate School of Ancient Studies. Her dissertation project includes the analysis of the animal bone from Monjukli Depe in the framework of human-animal studies. She examines fauna not only as a source of ecological or economic information, but by using different methods and interpretive possibilities she studies the rich variety of relations between humans and animals.
Ilia Heit is preparing his doctoral thesis within the Topoi-Project A-2-2 "Mobile village cultures in the foothills of the Kopet Dag." His project deals with temporality of archaeological evidence from Monjukli Depe and other sites in the region. He is focusing on changes in prehistoric building and living practices. Based on architectural structures and installations (dis-)continuities of spatial design will be examined both at Monjukli Depe and other sites in the region.
Birgül Ögüt is research assistant in the Monjukli Depe project at the Institute of Near Eastern Archaeology, Freie Universität Berlin. In her dissertation, she analyses the strategies used by Monjukli residents in the selection, production and consumption of ground stone. In addition to technological aspects, she examines activities connected to these stones, such as procurement, transport to the site, processing, use and reuse, up to final discard and archaeological discovery.
Within the frame of the Dahlem Junior Host Program, the three doctoral students have invited Aydogdy Kurbanov who is an expert on the research area. During his stay in Berlin, reference data will be integrated as well as archive material exchanged. His attendance will not only contribute to the excavation project, but also enhance the ongoing analyses of different archaeological materials from Monjukli Depe, which are central to the three doctoral theses.

Giacomo Comiati invited by Alexander Winkler (September–November 2016)


Giacomo Comiati and Alexander Winkler

The aim of this research project is to study the use and function of stylistic registers in the epic poetry written in 16th century Italy both in Latin and in the vernacular from a synchronic comparative perspective. The intense reception of Aristotle's Poeticsas well as of other treatises on style and rhetoric (e.g. Demetrios, Pseudo-Longinus) sparked an unprecedented interest in poetics which affected both literary theory and practice. Not least because of the strong influence Petrarch's lyric poetry exerted on 16th century literature the lyric register had become part of the language used in the Italian poema eroico. In the poema eroico various styles blend in order to produce very particular effects. This projects wants to approach Neo-Latin epic poetry of this period and analyse the specifically Neo-Latin use of stylistic registers against the backdrop of the theory and practice of vernacular epic poetry.
The visiting project partner, Dr. Giacomo Comiati (PhD, University of Warwick), is an expert in both Italian and Latin lyric poetry of the Cinquecento and will complement the research interests of his Dahlem Junior Host Alexander Winkler (Institute for Romance Languages and Literatures, Free University Berlin) which focus on Neo-Latin epic poetry.

Irene Chabr invited by Kerstin Schankweiler (October 2016)


Irene Chabr and Kerstin Schankweiler

Irene Chabr and Kerstin Schankweiler both work on recent image phenomena in social networks in the context of protest movements and online activism. At the center of their projects are questions about the selfie as a tool of protest, appropriations of image repertoires through re-enactment, the emergence of supposedly global communities through images and the promise of authenticity of digital user photography. The cooperation project of Chabr and Schankweiler at the interface between artistic and scientific practice is an intensive exchange, where image corpora will be discussed and analyzed, and the different perspectives of affect theory and representational critique will enter into a dialogue. At the end of the project a conversation between the two researchers will be published.
Dr. Kerstin Schankweiler is art historian and post-doctoral research fellow in the Collaborative Research Centre "Affective Societies. Dynamics of social coexistence in mobile worlds" at Free University Berlin, working within project B01 entitled "Affective Dynamics of Images in the Era of Social Media.”
Irene Chabr is artist and research associate in the project “Zeichenwerkstatt” at Zurich University of the Arts. Her project is entitled “Wandering Gestures. An artistic and cultural-analytical inquiry of image migrations.”

Anacleto D’Agostino invited by Costanza Coppini (November 2016)


Anacleto D'Agostino and Constanza Coppini

Costanza Coppini (PhD Freie Universität Berlin, 2014) is currently collaborating in the project “Archaeological Research at Tell Feḫeriye (Syria)”, which is based at the Institute for Near Eastern Archaeology and led by Prof. Dominik Bonatz. Within this frame, she is in charge of the final publication of the Late Bronze Age ceramic from the excavation conducted between 2006 and 2010. The last stage of the publication work opened up the opportunity for developing the research project “Materialisation of governance: the Mittani and Middle-Assyrian pottery from Tell Feḫeriye (Syria)”. The project aims at tracing in material culture, i.e. ceramic, legacies of political changes, which are historically documented in Late Bronze Age Northern Mesopotamia. The guest invited within the frame of the “Dahlem Junior Host Program”, Dr. Anacleto D’Agostino (PhD University of Florence, 2008), is an international acknowledged specialist of Late Bronze Age pottery from Northern Mesopotamia, thanks to his decennial work at the site of Tell Barri (north-eastern Syria). During his visit a collaboration will be established that allows for exchanging (unpublished) materials and elaborating an over-regional framework for the Late Bronze Age Upper Mesopotamian ceramic tradition and settlement pattern that allows to further tackle the questions posed during the ongoing research based on a single-site material data.

Rayya El Zein invited by Kristin Flade (December 2016–January 2017)


Rayya El Zein and Kristin Flade

Kristin Flade is a PhD candidate in theatre studies in the ERC project The Aesthetics of Applied Theatre. Her dissertation project “A Good Pain? Artistic Practices in Conflict Zones” examines applied theatre and practices of politically engaged performative arts in Palestine. As a guest Kristin has invited performance scholar Rayya El Zein. Rayya holds a PhD from the City University New York that is entitled “Performing el Rap el ʿArabi 2005-2015: Feeling Politics amid Neoliberal Incursions in Ramallah, Amman, and Beirut”. Together, they will work on the project “Writing Palestine: (Notes) Towards an Ethnography of Political Performance”, drawing on their extensive on-site research experiences in Palestine during which they each encountered methodological and political challenges. Writing about performances under occupation creates unique discursive and methodological opportunities for theatre and performance studies. The dialogue Rayya and Kristin are setting out to have will make use of those opportunities in writing a joint article as well as presenting their thoughts in a public workshop to be held at Freie Universität Berlin.