Seminar: Koslofsky

Ensignes of Honour and Nobility: Marked Skin and Skin Color in the Atlantic World

Join us as we welcome Professor Craig Koslofsky (Illinois) to our Renaissance Skin seminar

We are delighted to welcome Professor Craig Koslofsky to join us for a presentation of his new work on skin, colour, and meaning in the early modern world. In his paper 'Ensignes of Honour and Nobility: Marked Skin and Skin Color in the Atlantic World', Koslofsky examines a diverse range of dermal practices in the Atlantic world. By expanding on Fanon’s concept of epidermalization, he connects the many roles skin played in pre-contact West African and North American societies with the development of whiteness and skin color in the wake of European expansion.

Professor Koslofsky is based at the University of Illinois. He is the author of Evening's Empire: A History of the Night in Early Modern Europe, which was winner of the Longmann History Today Book of the Year Award, and The Reformation of the Dead: Death and Ritual in Early Modern Germany, 1450- 1700.

His new project 'The Deep Surface: Skin in the Early Modern World, 1450-1750' is of particular relevance to the Renaissance Skin project, as it seeks to locate the origins of modern conceptions of skin colour and race at the intersection of early modern European, African, and American ways of 'marking' and 'knowing' skin.

This seminar will include the presentation and a discussion of a work-in-progress. The paper will be pre-circulated to those once registered. Space is limited, so we encourage all those who attend to read the paper in advance and contribute to the discussion. To attend, please register by emailing the team (see Contact page).