College Art Association Conference 2019 - CFP "Visualizing Scientific Thinking and Religion in the Early Modern Iberian World"

Brendan McMahon's picture
Call for Papers
August 6, 2018
New York, United States
Subject Fields: 
Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Early Modern History and Period Studies, History of Science, Medicine, and Technology, Latin American and Caribbean History / Studies, Religious Studies and Theology


CAA 107th Annual Conference, New York, February 13-16, 2019

CFP: "Visualizing Scientific Thinking and Religion in the Early Modern Iberian World"
Deadline: August 6, 2018

In recent years, the consideration of visual and material sources has greatly enriched the study of a wide range of scientific practices in the early modern period. As scholars have moved away from characterizing “art” and “science” as discrete categories, they have increasingly turned to paintings, prints, and other forms of artistic production as a means to explore how early modern actors came to understand their experiences of the natural world.

While the vast majority of these studies focus on the visual and material culture of Protestant Northern Europe, a small but growing number investigate similar trends in Spain and the Spanish Americas. Yet even as scholars have turned to instances where visual thinking formed a central component of scientific practices in this region, they have been more tentative to consider how religion, and particularly Catholicism, shaped such practices in this context. This session seeks papers that consider the intersections of visual production, scientific thinking, and religion in the early modern Iberian world, investigating such themes as:

• Material culture, techne, and artisanal epistemologies

• The mobilization of indigenous American and creole systems of natural knowledge

• The Catholic Enlightenment

• Healing, disease, and visual production

• Visual and material culture, theology, and natural philosophical argument

• Epistemic images in the early modern Iberian world

Please submit your proposal including a title, an abstract (250 words maximum), and a shortened CV (2 pages) to Emily Floyd ( and Brendan McMahon ( by August 6th.

Contact Info: 

Dr. Brendan McMahon: Postdoctoral Fellow, Michigan Society of Fellows, University of Michigan

Dr. Emily Floyd: Lecturer in Visual Culture and Art before 1700, University College London

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