Entangled Objects? The Material Culture of Cross-Cultural Negotiations: Habsburg–Ottoman Diplomacy 1527–1648

Wednesday 18th February 2015, Gonville & Caius College Auditorium, 5-6pm

Harriet Rudolph (Regensburg)

Professor Rudoph’s talk – the first speaker event organised by the network – examined the various forms, functions, and semantics of objects in diplomatic interaction between representatives of the Habsburg Empire and the Ottoman Empire. By applying the methods of Material Culture Studies to the fields of diplomacy, foreign policy, and international law, the paper opened up possibilities of a more profound understanding of individual political processes of negotiation between these two empires in peace and war.

The talk was followed by questions and a lively discussion, in which topics that proved of particular interest to the group included the ‘recycling’ of diplomatic gifts by their recipients, and comparison of Ottoman-Habsburg relations with the Porte’s contacts with other powers (such as the Dutch, French and Persians).

Harriet Rudolph is Professor of Early Modern History at Regensburg University. She specializes in European political cultures, the history of diplomacy, and material cultures. Her publications include Eine gelinde Regierungsart. Peinliche Strafjustiz im geistlichen Territorium: Das Hochstift Osnabrück, 1716–1803 (2001); and Das Reich als Ereignis: Formen und Funktionen der Herrschaftsinszenierung bei Kaiserauftritten, 1558–1618 (2011).


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