Upcoming events

“‘Doubts about man’: Apes and global markets in Enlightenment debates” – Lecture by Silvia Sebastiani (EHESS, Paris)

date: 8 December 2020, 16.00-17.30, online
Note: change of date. This seminar was initially scheduled for 24 november but has now been delayed to 8 december.
Register by sending an e-mail to: info@globalintellectualhistory.org


In this paper, Silvia Sebastiani will discuss how Europe’s trade of apes, slaves and goods tested the boundaries of humanity during the Enlightenment. She will look at scientific, political and legal debates raised by the introduction, dissection and public exposition of the so called ‘orangutan’ in European metropoles, paying specific attention to the British context: how does the ‘orangutan’ contribute to our understanding of Enlightenment ‘science of man’? In what ways has it been used to conceptualize humanity? Eighteenth-century physicians, natural historians, geographers, lawyers, or merchants, while reframing the borders between humans and apes, also contributed to increase the distance between the ‘savage’ and the ‘civilized’ peoples: whereas the human/animal divide lowered, the divide between human ‘races’ increased and crystallized.


Silvia Sebastiani is “maître de conférences” (associate professor) at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. She obtained her PhD at the European University Institute with a thesis on race and gender in the Scottish Enlightenment. Her book The Scottish Enlightenment. Race, Gender and the Limits of Progress (2013) was awarded the Istvan Hont prize for the best book in intellectual history of the year. In 2017-2018 she stayed at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study. Her current research is about Enlightenment debates on slavery and the boundaries between man and apes in the context of empire.

“Revolutionary Cosmopolitanism. Transnational migration and political activism, 1815-1848” – one-day conference with a keynote lecture by Maurizio Isabella (Queen Mary, University of London)

Date and place: Friday 22 January 2021, Utrecht University
organizer: Camille Creyghton

Prospective programme

Keynote Maurizio Isabella (Queen Mary, University of London)

Panel 1: Reluctant revolutionaries: Between saving old worlds and adapting to new ones  

  • James Morris, Crossing the Counterrevolutionary Border in Wallachia, 1848-49
  • Oliver Zajac, Hotel Lambert’s Republic of Letters: František Zach’s mission in Belgrade as an example of a cosmopolitan revolutionary network
  • Piotr Kuligowski, A Conceptual Hybridization: Reception of the French Early Socialist Concepts within the Polish Political Community in Exile before 1848
  • Oliver Schulz, Policing immigration and migrant networks: the Swiss cantons, European politics and the question of political asylum (1815-1848)

Panel 2: (Self-)fashioning of revolutionaries and PR strategies

  • Pierre-Marie Delpu, The Transnational Community of Revolutionary Martyrs (Southern Europe, 1830-1848)
  • Peter Morgan, Exilic Anglophilia and the hope of intervention: Recasting British exile in the age of revolution with Francisco de Miranda and Simón Bolívar
  • Matilde Flamigni, Agostino Codazzi: A Transatlantic Life (1793-1859)

Panel 3: Large scale and/or involuntary migrations and the spread of revolutionary ideas

  • Sebastian Majstorovic, The Vagrant Threat: Political Journeymen Activism as a European Phenomenon, c. 1834-1848
  • Alessandro Bonvini, La causa del Nuevo Mundo: Bonapartists in the Latin American Wars of Emancipation
  • Elena Bacchin, Transportation of political prisoners: Roman detainees landing in Brazil in 1837

See for more information: https://revolutionarycosmopolitanism.blogspot.com/

“Women and the History of International Thinking” – Public lecture by Glenda Sluga (The University of Sydney/European University Institute)

Date: 2 February 2021
Place t.b.a.

Abstract: t.b.a.

Public lecture by Or Rosenboim (City, University of London)

date: 15 June 2021
Place: t.b.a.

Title and abstract: t.b.a.