CON/VERSIONES: Conversations through the Mediterranean

  • Deadline: Feb 15, 2024
  • Baltimore, MD

This call for papers is for a conference at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore (April 19-20, 2024) centered on the theme of conversion in early modern Iberia and the larger Mediterranean.

This conference is concerned with questions of religious change and specifically of the change brought about by forced mass conversion in Early Modern Iberia. Simultaneously, the conference aims to engage with the emergence of shifting identities and new religious attitudes, as well as the impact that forced conversion had on the converts themselves, their heirs and on intellectual and cultural life.


The conference has three main objectives in mind:

  1. to provide a forum where Conversos and Moriscos can be considered as connected rather than distinct socio-cultural experiences;
  2. to bring together an interdisciplinary group of scholars to explore conversion themes and issues from different –although complementary– academic perspectives and approaches;
  3. to provide a venue where scholars can discuss these topics within the broader context of the Mediterranean. This framework will help bring together recent research on the conversion experience while examining possible global conjunctures and the way in which conversion was influenced and affected by imperial politics.


The organizers seek submissions that carefully examine Conversos and Moriscos history on a variety of levels: construction of identities, Otherness, belief and practice, the problem of assimilation, their culture and literary production, and experiences of their Mediterranean diaspora, among others.

Despite the unique trajectory of each group, the organizers of the conference maintain that they are worth considering together and thus invite proposals that analyze their parallel histories in comparison and in dialogue with each other.

Moreover, in order to properly assess the nature and complexity of the conversion phenomena in Early Modern Iberian history, the organizers encourage submissions that expand the discussion on the Conversos and Moriscos beyond the borders of Iberia, investigating the ways in which these groups engaged also with various networks across the wider Mediterranean region.

Although the conference is framed for research specializing in the Early Modern period, contributions from other periods will also be considered.


Scholars who are interested in participating should send abstracts of up to 250 words for papers in English, French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish, that engage with the above-mentioned topics by February 15. Please direct any questions to [email protected].

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