Congratulations Margaret Gaida, recently named as a 2014 Mediterranean Regional Research Fellow by the Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC). The regional fellowship program enables pre- and early post-doctoral scholars to carry out research in the humanities and related social sciences in countries bordering the Mediterranean and served by American overseas research centers. Funding for this program is generously provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
The Mediterranean Regional Research Fellowship will fund Margaret's studies in Turkey, where she will undertake an study entitled, "From Damascus to Rome: Astrology in Cross-Cultural Contexts, 950-1520. This study follows the historical trajectory of a single text, Alcabitius’ Introduction to Astrology, from its infancy in tenth-century Damascus, to its incorporation into Italian universities during the Renaissance, and finally to its transformation from manuscript to print in late fifteenth-century Venice. From this textual biography, the project develops a culturally-sensitive and situated account of the transmission of astrological knowledge from the Islamic world into the Latin West. A close study of a selection of the Introduction and its surviving manuscripts, commentaries, and printed versions reveals a diverse group of medieval readers. Studying these readers and their contexts in conjunction reveals how astrology took shape in Europe by assimilating and adapting Islamic ideas.
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