IAS Seminar by Professor Stefan Brink (University of Cambridge)
Cosin's Hall, Durham University
In this seminar Professor Stefan Brink will discuss the topic his is working on at the IAS, namely how the prehistoric (i.e. pre-1100) Scandinavians perceived their landscape. It was certainly not in the same way as modern people perceives and utilizes their surrounding landscape. It is possible to identify sites in the pagan landscape that people obviously visited to communicate with deities and ancestors, and where they probable felt they could be ‘charged’ in some way due to the closeness to deities and ancestors. There are many aspects to discuss here, one aspect is the “religious”, or better, cultic and ritual aspect of place and space, another is how power structures can be “read” in that landscape and society, a third is the way we are able to understand how law and legal traditions were intimately connected to the pre-Christian landscape. In this way, he will discuss illuminating sites and landscapes. Professor Brink is trying to add a spatial dimension to the sites and their context, so to say, in the landscape. This project is hence an attempt to let the actual landscape, not people, ‘speak’ to us, to make it ‘reveal’ its secrets of a situation circa one millennium ago. Professor Brink has called this approach spatial history.
Places are limited and so any academic colleagues or students interested in attending in person should register here.
To attend online via Zoom, please register here.