Thinking with Objects: The Impact of Material Culture on Disciplinary Boundaries, Teaching Practices, and Eighteenth-Century Studies

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Dr Giovanna Vitelli (Ashmolean): ‘Thinking with Objects: the impact of material culture on disciplinary boundaries, teaching practices, and eighteenth-century studies’

This seminar will explore the potential for cross-disciplinary learning and teaching in the long eighteenth century, and present recent case studies of successful collaboration. The title, ‘Thinking with Objects’, also reflects faculty interest in the enhanced research potential being offered by the “material turn” in the humanities.

The University Engagement Programme, launched in 2012 with the support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, aims to enlarge the use and understanding of the Ashmolean Museum’s extensive collections in mainstream Oxford teaching. To date, the programme has taught nearly 3000 students at the Museum, from over 25 departments and all four Divisions, introducing ‘object work’ as a valid and enriching component of learning, and a stimulus to further reflection. The UEP team not only offer single sessions as part of existing courses, but are actively engaged in formulating new Papers and Options, supervising students, teacher training, and also offer opportunities for research that integrates philological and material approaches.

The session will be followed by afternoon tea.

An additional material handling session at the Ashmolean with Dr Vitelli, between 2-5pm, will take place on Tuesday 27 May. There will be 12 spaces, and participants will be invited to sign up following the seminar.

This is part of RECSO's Trinity Term 2014 Programme 'Crossing the Disciplines’

All seminars take place within the Radcliffe Humanities Building on Woodstock Road. To be notified of updates and additional events “follow” the RECSO Blog. Also see the Network page for further details, recommended readings, and other activities.


Romanticism and Eighteenth Century Studies Oxford

Contact name: Adam Brigden

Contact email:

Audience: Open to all