SEELECTS: Judging a book by its cover – Meditation, memory, and invention in 17th-century Ukrainian title pages

22-03-2018 van 18:00 tot 20:00
Campus Boekentoren, Blandijnberg 2, room/lokaal 160.015 (6th floor/6te verdieping)
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Vakgroep Talen en culturen/ Slavistiek en Oost-Europakunde
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SEELECTS or 'Slavic and East-European lectures' is a series of lectures, interviews and discussion panels, organized by the Research Group 'Slavonic and East European Studies'. This series is a forum for national and international scholars and public figures. All presentations cover East and Southeast Europe, but are not restricted to Slavic topics alone. The talks are rather broad and exploratory, than all too narrow or specific. Every presentation will be followed by an informal reception.
Maria Grazia Bartolini (Università degli studi di Milano): Judging a book by its cover – Meditation, memory, and invention in 17th-century Ukrainian title pages

This study concerns the use of visual paratexts in seventeenth-century Ukraine, and of illustrated title pages in particular. The books under analysis represent three crucial monuments of seventeenth-century Ukrainian sacred oratory. These are: Lazar Baranovych’s Truby sloves propovidnykh na narochityia dni prazdnikov (Kyiv, 1674), Antonii Radyvylovs'kyi’s Ohorodok Marii Bohorodytsy (Kyiv, 1676) and his Vinets Khrystov (Kyiv, 1688). I concentrate on the “cognitive” aspect of their titular pages, dealing with them as a rhetorical process that emphasizes meditation, invention, and memory. More specifically, I investigate the correlation between the visual and the written as a specific literary-figurative “mode of thought” that stands in a long Christian tradition of expounding images as meditational tools. I will show how Baranovych and Radyvylovs’kyi interact with this tradition, arguing that their title pages provide readers-viewers with both a machina meditativa, a meditative apparatus for reflecting upon the mystery of the Incarnation, and a machina rhetorica, a repertory of images that the users of the books, often themselves preachers, could use to compose new texts.

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