Old Heritage Archive

History at the End of the World?

History at the End of the World?
History at the End of the World?

I am very excited to announce the forthcoming publication of what promises to be one of the signature books on history and human survival. My own contribution to this book is not on my usual topic of research, but on the example of the Parsis, Zoroastrian Indians of Persian descent and their diaspora. It is entitled, ‘A Zoroastrian Dilemma? Parsi Responses to Global Catastrophe’ and is in the final part of the book (Part VI: Surviving Catastrophe: Creating Conditions for Renewal) where I discuss how Parsis have reconciled life and religion throughout their history to survive a series of crises that have challenged this tiny community whose impact on the world has nevertheless been greater than most realise. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the editors, Mark Levene (University of Southampton), Rob Johnson (University of Oxford) and Penny Roberts (University of Warwick) for their brilliant shepherding of this project.

The book will be published in e-book and paperback form on 15 April, History at the End of the World? History, Climate Change and the Possibility of Closure edited by Mark Levene, Rob Johnson and Penny Roberts and is available from the following sources:

History at the End of the World? Out 15 April 2010:

Paperback via Troubador

E-book direct from Humanities Ebooks

Download the flyer for History at the End of the World

The collection has been produced under the auspices of Rescue!History , a network of historian activists with broadminded and sometimes radical approaches to thinking, life and the world. Rescue!History is the sister network to Crisis Forum. I will be reviewing the book on Past Thinking in due course.

Old Curatorial Archive

Textile Conservation Centre finds a new home in Glasgow

Clearly much continued to happen behind the scenes by the TCC Foundation before and since its closure in Winchester. A press release was made last week announcing a new home in Glasgow for many of its activities, particularly in research and education. I have taken the liberty of reproducing the press release in full below:

Press release issued by the University of Glasgow on 24th March 2010

New conservation centre preserves the fabric of the nation

Preserving the fabric of the nation’s treasures for future generations, a new textile conservation centre is to be established at the University of Glasgow.

The Textile Conservation Centre Foundation (TCCF) and the University of Glasgow have agreed to found the new teaching and research facility – the only resource of its kind in the UK – in the University’s Robertson Building.

Professor Nick Pearce, Director of the Institute for Art History and Head of the Department of History of Art, University of Glasgow, said: “This is a tremendous opportunity both for the University and also for the conservation profession in Scotland, the UK and internationally. Expertise, facilities and the wealth of the collections make Glasgow the ideal place for the kind of interdisciplinary research and study which the centre will promote.”

Peter Longman, Deputy Chairman of the Textile Conservation Centre Foundation said: “There was such concern over the closure of the Textile Conservation Centre in Winchester that over the last 18 months we have been approached by several institutions anxious to work with us to continue aspects of its work. We have considered a number of options, but the combination of Glasgow with its world class University and History of Art Department and the unrivalled collections in and around the City proved an irresistible location.

“This is a unique opportunity to build on the UK’s reputation in textile conservation training and related research; we look forward to contributing to its future success in Glasgow.”

The new centre for Textile Conservation, History and Technical Art History will focus on multidisciplinary object-based teaching and research that encompasses conservation and the physical sciences as well as art history, dress and textile history. It will be the first time that conservation training has been undertaken in Scotland and, combined with the University’s recent developments in technical art history, the new centre will have national and international impact.

The new Centre will inherit existing library intellectual property and analytical equipment from the TCCF, so that staff and future students will be able to draw on the key physical and intellectual assets built up over more than 30 years. Students will also have the opportunity to work with some of the best textile collections in the world held by Glasgow Museums, the National Museums of Scotland and the University’s own Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery. New academic posts will be created and the Centre will work closely with the Foundation to establish a global research network in textile conservation, textile and dress history and technical art history.

The first student intake is planned for September 2010 offering a 2-year Masters in Textile Conservation and a 1-year Masters in Dress and Textile History as well as opportunities for doctoral research. These new courses will join the existing Masters programme in Technical Art History, Making and Meaning, as part of the Centre. The Foundation is also offering a limited number of bursaries in the first years of the textile conservation programme and a fundraising campaign is already underway to raise further funds for the new development including additional studentships and new research projects. Potential students who would like to receive updates on the development and course details should email Ailsa Boyd at the University of Glasgow at: or

Old Curatorial Archive

Medieval sacred textiles in Germany

Just a quick note to disseminate this excellent resource listing sacred textiles in German collections by Amalie on the Adventures in Historical Tablet Weaving blog.

List of the contents of Sakrale Gewänder des Mittelalters.

It reminded me that in Bamberg Cathedral’s treasury there is meant to be a cloak that belonged to Duke Melo of Bari from his time of exile at the court of Emperor Henry II.