Professor Stephanie Leitch will present “Early Modern German Prints as Epistemic Warrants: From Murky Texts to Do-it-Yourself” at a symposium at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (CRASSH) at the University of Cambridge, November 10-11. Leitch will present research from a chapter of her book project, Vernacular Viewing: the Art of Observation in the Early Modern Print. This chapter concerns mid-sixteenth-century manuscripts whose motifs derive from printed sources. While the category of the epistemic genre has emerged recently in the secondary literature to explain the common empirical thrust and knowledge-based pursuits of otherwise unrelated genres, these manuscripts’ assembly of images from printed cosmographies, physiognomies, and related how-to genres provides hard evidence for their synergy.
The CRASSH Symposium, Epistemic Images in Early Modern Germany and its Neighbours, seeks to examine how and why images came to play such a decisive role in the production of new knowledge in early modernity. It will do so by bringing together German and Anglophone scholars from art history, Bildwissenschaft, and history of science in a series of workshops to be held in Cambridge, Berlin, and Williamstown.