CASiLaC Inaugural Lecture Series

9 Feb 2015
Abigail Brundin

Dr. Abigail Brundin will deliver a Public Lecture on ‘Domestic Devotions: the Place of Piety in the Renaissance Italian Home’ on Thursday, February 12th at 5 pm.  Venue: CACSSS Seminar Room ORB G.27.  To be followed by a wine and cheese reception

This talk presents a multi-disciplinary research project currently underway at the University of Cambridge, funded by a European Research Council Synergy Grant. Domestic Devotions brings together the study of books, buildings, objects, spaces, images and archives in order to understand how religion functioned in the Renaissance household. In opposition to the enduring stereotype of the Renaissance as a ‘secular age’, our research is premised on the view that religion played a key role in attending to the needs of the laity, and presents the period 1400-1600 as a period of spiritual revitalization. Devotions, from routine prayers to extraordinary religious experiences such as miracles or exorcisms, frequently took place with the home; they were also specifically shaped to meet the demands of domestic life – childbirth, marriage, infertility, sickness, accidents, famine and death. This tight nexus between the domestic and the devotional was neither institutionally nor legally defined. It cannot be adequately traced in any one type of source nor by means of a single approach. For this reason, a rare combination of expertise and experience across several disciplines is required in order to bring light to the pivotal place of piety in the Renaissance home.

As well as outlining the project aims and scope, the talk will also engage with the process of generating and managing an interdisciplinary project on this scale, and some of the crucial lessons learned along the way.

This event is supported by the UCC Strategic Research Fund


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