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Durham University

Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS)

Event Archive

Renaissance Graces: A Round-Table Conversation

9th July 2020, 15:00 to 16:30

This event is sponsored by the IMEMS research project Early Modern Keywords and is part of a series of online events arranged in lieu of the full Durham Early Modern Conference, which will return 6-8 July 2021

Chair: Marc Schachter (French, Durham University)

Ita Mac Carthy’s 2020 book, The Grace of the Italian Renaissance, joins Brian Cummings’s 2011 monograph, The Literary Culture of the Reformation: Grammar and Grace, and Patricia Emison’s 1991 Renaissance Studies article, ‘Grazia’, in a growing body of early modern scholarship on grace within and beyond the disciplines of Modern Languages, English, and Art History. Mac Carthy sought in her study to bring such scholarship together. She explores grace as a ‘complex keyword’ that at once conveys and connects the most pressing ethical, social, and aesthetic debates of sixteenth-century Italy. She does so in the knowledge that grace also acts ‘as a crucible for culture and society, spirituality and politics’ – as she puts it in her book – ‘across a range of contexts’ in other times and places.

This event will bring together, in a live online conversation, an international group of major scholars working on grace and related notions. The conversation will take place in the light of Mac Carthy’s new study and will be informed by the different preoccupations and perspectives of the participants. Please join the conversation and add to it by posting your questions and comments for the panel online during the event.


Brian Cummings (English, University of York);

Patricia Emison (Art History, University of New Hampshire);

Ita Mac Carthy (Italian and Translation Studies, Durham University);

Martin McLaughlin (Italian, University of Oxford);

Simon Park (Portuguese, University of Oxford)