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Home > Archives > Previous years: Seminars > Seminars 2019-2020: archives > Powers of Imagination. Historical Approach. 2019–2020

Powers of Imagination. Historical Approach. 2019–2020

Seminar EHESS/CNRS organised by Elizabeth Claire (CNRS), Béatrice Delaurenti (EHESS), Roberto Poma (University Paris Est-Créteil) and Koen Vermeir (CNRS)
……… Contacts:
elizabeth.claire (at) ; beatrice.delaurenti (at) ; poma (at) ; koen.vermeir (at)

The concept of imagination is today seen as as a legitimate object of study, having long been discredited by scientific research. However, in modern and contemporary literature, imagination is generally considered in a negative way, as a mental faculty that can cause disease, error, illusion or sin. By cons, its role was very important, because the imagination formed the necessary link between body and soul.
So that was the preferred place to act to perform bodily healing as well as spiritual.
We would go against this idea of ​​imagination by studying intellectual tradition and alternative and misunderstood practice. Since the XIIth and XIIIth centuries until the early XIXth century, thinkers and practitioners from a diverse set of disciplines, expressing themselves from different institutional positions, supported the idea that imagination has great powers on the body and on the body and mind of others.
As in the previous years, the seminar will work around these texts in the manner of a workshop, and will endeavor to implement a collective work of discussion, analysis and comparison of sources over the long term.

SCHEDULE 2019-2020
On Fridays, 9am–5pm, at EHESS, 54 & 105 bd Raspail, Paris 75006: this year, sessions will be full days.

March 13 !!, 2020 April 24 May 15
All sessions of SPHERE seminars are suspended from March 15 due to covid-19. We hope to be able to provide further updates and to see you soon.

March13 !! Session postponed !!

  • 9am–10:30am: Thibaut Trochu (University of Lille/INSPE)
    L’imagination religieuse selon William James
  • 10:45am–12:15am: Benoit Grévin (CNRS / CRH)
    Boncompagno, l’intellectus imaginarius et la transumptio. "Imaginer" le monde à travers la métaphore au XIIIe siècle
  • 1:30pm–3:00pm: Nicolas Weill-Parot (EPHE/Saprat)
    Action à distance et imagination dans les commentaires de la Physique d’Aristote (XIIIe-XVe siècle)
  • 3:15pm–4:45pm: Roberto Poma (UPEC)
    Misère et grandeur Della forza della fantasia umana (1745) de Ludovico Muratori

April 24, Room A04_47 at 54 bd Raspail

  • 9:00am–10:30am: Fernando Salmón (Université de Cantabria, Satander)
    Trust, hope, emotions and the healing encounter in the Middle Ages
  • 10:45am–12:15am: Marion Lieutaud (Université de Paris Sorbonne)
    Pouvoirs de l’imagination et contractions de l’âme chez Giordano Bruno
  • 1:30pm–3:00pm: Suzanne Rochefort (CRH)
    L’imagination comme exercice dans les traités d’art de l’acteur au XVIIIe siècle
  • 3:15pm–4:45pm: Roberto Poma (UPEC)
    Mollesse du corps et force de l’imagination dans l’éducation des enfants (XVI-XVII siècles)

May 15, Room 7 at 105 bd Raspail

  • 9:00am–9:15am : Elizabeth Claire
    Introduction sur la notion de la contagion en danse
  • 9:15am–10:45am: Béatrice Delaurenti (EHESS, CRH)
    La contagion du bâillement et le pouvoir de l’imagination
  • 10:45am–12:15am: Gregor Rohmann (Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main)
    With or without contagion: Dancing Mania before and after the 1518 outbreak
  • 1:30pm–3:00pm: Elizabeth Claire (CNRS, CRH) et Roberto Poma (UPEC)
    Chorea lascivadans les jardins des plaisirs parisiens et histoire médicale du vertige
  • 3:15pm–4:45pm: Alessandro Arcangeli (Univ. Verona)
    Une maladie fort commune & singulière : Tunisian women join the European paradigm of dancing mania (18th c.)