29 June 2023
Hamburg, HLCEES, 29-30 June 2023 / CfP until 31 October 2022
Historiography is one of the well-established Gǝʿǝz literary genres, represented with interchangeable keywords Tārik (ታሪክ፡ ‘history’) and Zenā (ዜና፡ ‘news, narrative, story, announcement’). The royal chronicles, called Zenā mawāʾǝl (‘Book of Chronicles’), are amongst the most important Gǝʿǝz historiographical texts, which were written for most of the kings from the fourteenth century onwards, with the exception of a few kings in between until the twentieth century. Until the nineteenth century, these official chronicles were written in Gǝʿǝz, later substituted by Amharic. Most of the chronicles appear to have been composed already during the reign of the king by a royal chronicler in charge of this task, who took part in the king’s campaigns and the daily life of the royal wandering court as an eyewitness. The production of Gǝʿǝz historiographical texts in the Christian kingdom of Ethiopia was not limited to the court for recording the deeds of the kings only, but it also encompassed recording the memories of monasteries, local communities, shorter historiographical texts transmitted as additional notes, and in exceptional cases of ethnic groups. The corpus of Gǝʿǝz historiographical texts includes also a number of texts translated from (Copto-) Arabic, which belong to the genre of universal history (or universal chronicles) dealing with the history of nations, religious figures and kings outside the domain of the Christian kingdom of Ethiopia.
These groups of historiographical texts have been subjected to a variety of scientific studies over the past centuries, from editing and translating them into various languages to analyzing and interpreting the data they contain. Yet, there are still a lot of gaps. Thus, in the last decades, the earlier editions have been re-evaluated from the modern text criticism perspective. Hence, some royal chronicles have been re-edited applying new approaches and methods. However, there are still some texts that require re-edition, as new important witnesses may have emerged, or they may have been insufficiently studied in terms of their functions, forms, and usefulness for reconstructing the past. Furthermore, comparative studies of these different groups of historical texts have not been conducted yet. Finally, there are still unedited historical texts that should also be edited to make them available to historians in the future.
The workshop attempts to address the existing gaps by providing a comprehensive look at the methods and approaches used to critically edit historiographical texts, the forms and languages used in them, a comparative analysis of such texts, and the purpose and function of writing them, as well as their use for historical research.
We invite contributions on these historiographical texts from all periods (medieval, post-medieval and even modern), focusing mainly on editing (or re-editing with new approaches and methods), translating and documenting and analyzing it for further scientific research.
Relevant themes include (but are not restricted to):
-Text criticism and methodologies for historiographical texts (case studies on the edition and translation)
-Function and purpose of writing chronicles and other historiographical texts
-Forms of the chronicles
-Chronicles and reconstruction of the past
The applicants should submit a short abstract of no more than 250 words, along with a short CV, before 31 October 2022 to Solomon Gebreyes Beyene at fonv579"AT"uni-hamburg.de(solomongebreyes"AT"gmail.com)
Travel bursaries covering travel and accommodation shall be available for selected participants.