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Teaching Fellows' Day: Pagans, Christians, And Muslims: Mediterranean Transitions

In the Spring of 2011, the Byzantine Teaching Fellows at Dumbarton Oaks held a Teaching Day in conjunction with the Museum’s ‘Cross References’ Exhibition; students from the Catholic University of America and George Washington University came to Dumbarton Oaks and heard a series of invited lectures on various topics relating to the Cross and to crosses.  Both participants and attendees came away from the day pleased and quite enthused with how it went.  This spring, the Teaching Fellows at Dumbarton Oaks hope to continue this success by holding a second Teaching Day.  The theme this year, ‘Transitions,’ has been inspired by two significant exhibitions being held in New York in 2012: the ‘Transition to Christianity’ show at the Onassis Cultural Center and the ‘Transitions’ show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  The focus will be on various transitions which took place in the Byzantine world in the Late Antique and medieval periods: the transition between paganism and Christianity; the transition between Christianity and Islam; and the transition between the ancient and medieval worlds.  Students from CUA, from GW and now from Georgetown as well, will be in attendance, and our goal will be to give them a sense of Byzantium’s place and role in the context of these larger, world-historical cultural shifts.