Things that connect - pathways of materiality and practice

Karl Jaspers Zentrum für Transkulturelle Forschung
Exzellenzcluster "Asien und Europa im globalen Kontext"; zusammen mit dem Sonderforschungsbereich 933 "Materiale Textkulturen"
10.10.2012 - 12.10.2012
Dr. Alexander Haentzschel

We cordially invite you to the fourth Annual Conference of the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context" to be held at Heidelberg University, Germany, October 10th - 12th, 2012. It has been organised in cooperation with the Collaborative Research Centre "Material Text Cultures" at Heidelberg University.

Entitled "Things that connect - pathways of materiality and practice" this year's meeting focuses on the study of materiality and the power it exercises in cultural processes. The expanding field of material culture studies has infused a new dynamism into a range of disciplines from archaeology and epigraphy to anthropology, histories of consumption, quotidian life, technology, curatorial and museum studies, aesthetics and art history.

The conference features two keynote lectures: by Neil MacGregor, the Director of the British Museum in London and author of "A History of the World in 100 Objects", and Ian Hodder (Stanford), who will speak about the interrelationship of humans and things. The conference will consist of four plenary panels in the morning on "The Obstinacy of Things", "Multiple Materialities: Local, National, Global", "Material Text Cultures on the Move", and "Materializing Messages: Metamorphoses and Placement of Texts in Early China". The afternoon segment will feature a number of smaller, parallel panels designed to present the best results of the wide-ranging research carried out during the past years by scholars in the congenial cross-regional and transdisciplinary setting of the Cluster "Asia and Europe". A plenary round-table discussion will conclude the conference.

For further information on the conference, please visit our website at

Please let us know if you will attend the conference by sending an email to

We kindly ask you to forward this information to your colleagues and potential participants and thank you for your support.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012
17:00-18:00 Registration
18:00-18:15 Welcome: Madeleine Herren-Oesch, Acting Director of the Cluster "Asia and Europe in a Global Context"
18:15-18:30 Things that Connect - Introduction. Monica Juneja, Professor of Global Art History, Speaker Research Area D
18:30-20:00 Keynote I: Trajectories of meaning: the shifting power of things. Speaker: Neil MacGregor, Chair: Monica Juneja
20:00-22:00 Reception Bel Etage

Thursday, October 11, 2012
08:30-09:00 Registration
09:00-10:30 Panel I: The Obstinacy of Things. Chair: Philipp W. Stockhammer, Discussant: Ian Hodder, Speakers: Hans P. Hahn, Philipp W. Stockhammer, Diamantis Panagiotopoulos
11:00-12:30 Panel II: Multiple Materialities: Local, National, Global. Chair: Melanie Trede, Discussant: Monica Juneja, Speakers: Melanie Trede, Hans Thomsen, Terry Milhaupt, Christine Guth
14:00-15:30 Panel A (Session I): Soy, Gold and Opium: Cultural dimensions of global commodities. Chair: Roland Wenzlhuemer, Speakers: Ines Prodöhl, Bernd-Stefan Grewe, Frank Grüner
14:00-15:30 Panel B (Session I): On the use and re-use of manuscripts: materiality, textual practice and changing values. Chair: Markus Hilgert, Speakers: Martin Delhey, Vito Lorusso, Birgit Kellner
14:00-15:30 Panel C (Session I): A Eurasian Story about Public Justice Told by a Drum or a Bell. Chair: Thomas Maissen, Speakers: Monica Juneja, Antje Flüchter, Rudolf G. Wagner
16:00-17:30 Panel A (Session II): How Material is the Immaterial? Sacred ´Things´ Transferred. Chair: Udo Simon, Speakers: Peter J. Bräunlein, Udo Simon, Astrid Zotter
16:00-17:30 Panel B (Session II): Unvalued transculturality. The hidden pathways of paper from Orient to Occident in premodern times. Chair: Antje Flüchter, Discussant: Michael Friedrich, Speakers: Agnieszka Helman-Wazny, Rebecca Sauer, Carla Meyer
16:00-17:30 Panel C (Session II): How do we connect with things? Concepts of materiality in modern and contemporary artistic practices across Asia, Africa and Europe. Chair & Discussant: Gerald Schröder, Speakers: Kerstin Schankweiler, Birgit Hopfener, Franziska Koch
18:30-20:00 Keynote II: From Materiality to Entanglement. Speaker: Ian Hodder, Chair: Diamantis Panagiotopoulos
20:00-20:15 Introduction to the Poster Presentation by Kerstin von Lingen. Young researchers from the Cluster’s graduate programme and the Cluster’s Digital Humanities division (HRA) together with young researchers of the SFB Material Text Cultures present their projects to the interested academia
20:15-21:00 Poster Presentation & Small Reception

Friday, October 12, 2012
09:00-10:30 Panel III: Material Text Cultures on the Move. Chair: Diamantis Panagiotopoulos, Speakers: Julia Lougovaya-Ast, Hanna Liss, Ludger Lieb
11:00-12:30 Panel IV: Materializing Messages: Metamorphoses and Placement of Texts in Early China. Chair: Enno Giele, Discussant: Olivier Venture, Speakers: Paul Nicholas Vogt, Guo Jue, Enno Giele
14:00-15:30 Panel A (Session III): "Votive stupas for the (post-)colonial nation state" - Inquiries into the performative practices of cultural heritage. Chair: Christiane Brosius, Speakers: Marieke Bloembergen, Michael Falser
14:00-15:30 Panel B (Session III): Things that connect, divide and transform: The materiality and performance of religious conversion in the early modern period. Chair: Antje Flüchter, Speakers: Gauri Parasher, Tobias Graf, Manja Quakatz
14:00-15:30 Panel C (Session III): Between uniformity and individual needs. Sacral architecture and imagery in religions from "the East" and the process of its adaption in different regional contexts. Chair & Discussant: Christian Witschel, Speakers: Darius Frackowiak, Matthias Aulenbacher, Robert Langer
16:00-17:15 Concluding Roundtable, Discussants: Joseph Maran, Sarah Fraser, Aloka Parasher-Sen and Markus Hilgert, Chair: Birgit Kellner
17:15-18:30 Material Encounters: Musical practice between Asia and Europe - A Lecture-Concert Chair: Barbara Mittler, Duo Seidenstrasse: Zhao Chanyuan (Zheng & Vocals), Benjamin Leuschner (Marimbaphone & Percussion)
18:30-19:00 Vote of thanks


Alexander Haentzschel

Voßstraße 2, Gebäude 4400, Raum 113, 69115 Heidelberg

Things that connect - pathways of materiality and practice, 10.10.2012 – 12.10.2012 Heidelberg, in: H-Soz-Kult, 26.09.2012, <>.