CfP Workshop: Sensory Experience in Rome’s Northern Provinces – deadline 31st July 2018

Workshop: Sensory Experience in Rome’s Northern Provinces

Saturday 6th October 2018, Woburn Suite, Senate House, London

Call for Papers

The spatial and sensory turn which is currently being felt in Roman Archaeology is not often mirrored in studies of the Roman provinces. The sites of Rome, Ostia, and Pompeii – due to standing remains, preservation and literature – have been a nexus for sensory research in recent years. This one-day workshop aims to bring the Roman North into the picture, encouraging scholars from diverse backgrounds to explore the sensory implications of material from, and with relevance to the Gallic, Germanic, and British provinces, from their earliest interactions with Roman civilisation to Late Antiquity.

This session hopes to not only correct the geographic distribution of the application of these approaches, but also to add another facet to ongoing debates about the experiences of the multifarious communities in these provinces. In this sense, we are interested in papers addressing the sensory impact that the influx of external material culture, behaviours, urbanism, and populations had on indigenous communities. Post-colonial approaches to this relationship are particularly welcome, and a consideration of the varied sensorium of this diverse and dynamic environment will enable us not only to improve our understanding of the Roman provinces but also processes involved in social change. We are also keen to receive abstracts about the experience of the colonisers, the military, themselves a community made up of many different ethnicities and social backgrounds. Finally, we encourage theoretical considerations on the (mis)use of a narrative approach in discussing/reconstructing the ancient senses, evaluating the role of imagination and creativity in current works on the topic.

We welcome paper proposals/abstracts of no more than 400 words. Presentations must not be longer than 20 minutes, with 10 minutes for discussion following each paper.

Particularly welcome are proposals which seek to present the material in a sensorially engaging and un-traditional way. The room will be set up for the usual PowerPoint presentations but we will have some space at the back of the room for tables for demonstration. If you are able to think of a way in which you can present your research without just sight (PowerPoint) and sound (speech) and possibly including objects to be passed around (and felt, smelt, tasted…) we would be very happy to work out a way of facilitating this. We are hoping to have a small budget to help provide materials.

The workshop is made possible thanks to a generous grant from the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies. Proposals should be sent to the organisers Thomas J. Derrick and Giacomo Savani ( by 31 July 2018. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any queries.
The organisers: Thomas J. Derrick and Giacomo Savani

More information at:

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