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Medieval and Early Modern Studies Program

Welcome The Medieval and Early Modern Studies Program at Rice offers students the opportunity to study in a variety of often interrelated medieval civilizations: European, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Asian, from the 4th to the 16th centuries. Our global and interdisciplinary program draws on a broad range of critical approaches and eleven departments -- Anthropology, Art History, Classics, English, French Studies, History, Jewish Studies, Music, Philosophy, and Religious Studies.  Students have the opportunity to experience medieval materials firsthand by examining the illuminated manuscripts and medieval art at Rice University and in the  libraries and museums of Houston.

O'Brien Medieval and Early Modern Studies Lecture Series with Sharon Kinoshita, Co-Director, UC Santa Cruz Center for Medieval Studies

Today a household name, Marco Polo is best remembered as an adventurer and travel writer, the first European to see China. Drawing on my recent translation of his work, my talk returns Marco Polo's text to its earliest medieval title, Le Devisement du monde/The Description of the World. Situating Marco in historical context--the late thirteenth-century networks of trade, travel, and exchange enabled by the Mongol conquest of Eurasia--we will take sheep (!) as a lens to illuminate the distinctiveness and diversity of this cosmopolitan world.

This lecture will be February 8, 4:00 p.m., in Sewall Hall 307.