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dr. B.S. (Babette) Hellemans

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Secretary of History:

My research is concerned with notions of change and continuity in long-term processes as they appear in religious and intellectual cultures. Since I have a background in historical anthropology, I consider texts, images, architecture, objects, rituals, theatre, and music as part of my source material. I am particularly interested in the way ancient objects and texts have a performative quality in the present that often seems to clash with ideologies about modernity (e.g. the notion of anachronism).

This interest has been the topic of several publications,
including: La Bible Moralisée: une oeuvre à part entière. Temporalité, sémiotique et creation au XIIIe siècle (2010), and the collected volume Images, Improvisations, Sound, and Silence from 1000 to 1800 - Degree Zero (2018) as the result of an NWO Internationalization Project of which I was the project leader.

I also have published two books on Peter Abelard in the Brill's Studies in Intellectual History Series: the collected volume Rethinking Abelard. A Collection of Critical Essays (2014), and the monograph Varieties of the Self. Peter Abelard and the Mental Architecture of the Paraclete (2023).

Last modified:19 July 2023 11.40 a.m.