Re: Kalamazoo



Paul J Gans wrote:
Weland <giles@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Paul J Gans wrote:

cemanuel <cemanuel@xxxxxxxx> wrote:


I went to some good sessions myself. All three Society for Late
Antiquity sessions were good. I went to two on Eastern European
Archaeology in the 4th-6th c. chaired by Florin Curta. They were solid
but suffered from some speakers not making it. Went to a couple on
religious thought in Late Antiquity and one on 11th century heresy.
There was a paper here and there that weren't that good but I can't
say there was a bad session.


On the negative side, living a bit more than 3 hours from the
conference means I can help feed my hobby fairly inexpensively. But
when you're just over 3 hours from work at something which is a hobby,
when something blows up at work you might end up having to leave to
take care of it. I missed Friday except for making an evening session
and I can firmly state that a 6-hour daily commute is not for me.
Really wanted to go to the Goffart session Paul mentioned.


I'm sorry I missed you at Kalamazoo. I kept looking, but no
luck.

That happens. I run into some people over and over again, but
others, nothing. And which group is which varies from year
to year.

The Goffart session was rather interesting for me, since the
end of the Western Roman Empire is a sort of new subject for me. Boy, do opinions vary. But I gather that the "barabarian
invasion" with burning, killing, maiming, etc., is not so much
in favor any more.

The tendency now seems to be that the Germanic groups were
first subverted by Rome and then conscripted as troops, moving
them into the Empire. Most were officially recognized by
Constantinople, or at least some were. And when central
authority fell away, they did what many "Roman" groups in
the army did -- declare their leader Emperor or, in many
cases, King, and took control of territory they wanted.

Now this is just my impression from the speakers as to
where things stand now. But it is also true (I gather)
that opinions vary widely.

One thing that came up several times during the Kalamazoo
meeting was the Justinian plague and its effect. It seems
that badly needs sorting out.



On the continent this is unquestionably true when we take off our Gibbon blinders. Still, there are those who hold to the older view, but nonetheless it is changing.


Bernie Bachrach, who chaired that session, told me later that
he expected it to be a blood bath. I suggested that perhaps
opinions had mellowed over the years but I don't think he
bought that.

Still, it was a very moderate session with each participant
finding something to agree with.


Well, Bernie was in the front lines when the changeover occurred, as you know. I suspect he still views the issue from that perspective...but I think you're right, views have mellowed; what's more the few lobbing bombs are mostly of the traditional viewpoint, and I think they all know that the view of Gibbon etc is on the way out.....however much adjustment the new view is in need of.
.



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