5. May 2022 - 7. May 2022 | Max-Weber-Kolleg, Faculty of Philosophy, Knowledge, Spaces, and Media

Beyond the Timeline: How to Write History (For Example of the Middle Ages) in Different Ways

Internationales Begegnungszentrum Erfurt
Max-Weber-Kolleg and Faculty of Philosphy
Event type
with registration

Joint workshop of the Max-Weber-Kolleg and the Professorship for Medieval History at the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Erfurt.

Please note:

On the first evening (5 May), a public evening lecture "Two Bricks of History Turned Upside Down - Facts and Evidence" by Markus Vinzent will be offered in hybrid format at the Kleine Synagoge (An der Stadtmünze 4, 99084 Erfurt). You will receive a meeting link after prior registration at: julia.seeberger@uni-erfurt.de

About the workshop

The workshop refers to the book published in 2019 by patristician and medi evalist Markus Vinzent "Writing the History of Early Christianity. From Reception to Retrospection" (Cambridge University Press). In his book Vinzent introduces the perspective of retrospection as a critical method of historiography and exemplifies this by several showcases from the ‘beginnings’ of Christianity. One of the basic ideas of retrospection is that writing history must by necessity be progressive (as all our thinking and writing is progressive), while its (re-)construction is always done in a regressive mode, working anachronologically against the timeline. If this is recognised, continuities and linearities disappear. Vinzent‘s historiographical method of retrospection dissolves the difference between sources (or an original, authoritative reference text) and secondary literature and questions past authorities (auctoritates). Retrospection rather foregrounds the author of the historiographical production as subj ect of history which targets different objects of the past. With his idea of retrospection, Vinzent dares to provoke classical historiography and challenges us to think about the way in which history is written. This challenge will be taken up at the workshop and it will be asked: How to write History (for example of the Mi ddle Ages) in different ways?


  • Sabine Schmolinsky, University of Erfurt
  • Julia Seeberger, University of Erfurt
  • Markus Vinzent, King’s College London / Max-WeberKolleg, University of Erfurt

Please register by 30.04.2022 by email to Julia Seeberger.

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