3rd TRANS_HYB workshop: 12 November 2021, in Lille and on Zoom

What can an anthropological approach

bring to the study of early modern worship ?

The workshop will be held at the University of Lille (Campus Pont de Bois, batiment B, salle B.0.553 “Denizot”) and on zoom. Due to current rules and regulations, a pass sanitaire, proof of vaccination status or negative COVID 19 test will be required to attend the workshop in person.

Programme (all times are PARIS time)

SESSION 1: 14h45-16H15

Christian Grosse (University of Lausanne) : Crise rituelle, science des rites et systèmes rituels à l’époque moderne

Christian Grosse is Professor of History and Anthropology of Modern Christianity at the Université de Lausanne. he specialises in the study of Reformed liturgical practices in the early modern period. I have fond memories of discovering his work as a PhD student more than a decade ago (especially his brilliant and intimidating tome entitled Les rituels de la Cène)
A full list of his publications is available here : https://www.unil.ch/ihar/home/menuinst/chercheurseuses/christian-grosse/publications.html

This presentation will be followed by a discussion.


SESSION 2: 16h30-17h45

Chair: Aude de Mézerac-Zanetti

A roundtable discussion about recent publications mobilizing an anthropological approach to analyse the Reformations.

Our second session will start at 16:30 and end at about 17H30 (with a further 15 minutes to discuss what lies ahead). Our discussion will turn to the use of anthropological approaches to study liturgy and religious practices in our respective fields. I thought it would be quite interesting to revisit this issue in light of two recent publications (where the term “anthropological” at least is front and center). In 2017, O. Christin and Y. Krumenacker edited  Les protestants à l’époque moderne: une approche anthropologique and Anne Eusterschulte and Hannah Wälzholz published the proceedings of the Anthropological Reformations- Anthropology in the Era of Reformation conference in 2015.


For this session, we have picked the following readings for their general approach to this issue and the questions that they raise:

  • Bob Scribner, “Historical Anthropology of Early Modern Europe” in Problems in the Historical Anthropology of Early Modern Europe, R. Po-Chia Hsia and R. W. Scribner, 1997 (p. 11-24).
  • p. 90-92 in Bob Scribner, “Reformation and desacralisation: from Sacramental World to Moralised Universe” in Problems in the Historical Anthropology of Early Modern Europe, R. Po-Chia Hsia and R. W. Scribner, 1997 (p.75-92). 
  • Alban Bensa, “Histoire et Anthropologie” in Historiographies I, Concepts et Débats, C. Delacroix, F. Dosse, P. Garcia & N. Offendstadt, p. 42-53
  • André Burguière, “L’anthropologie historique” in Le métier d’Historien, François Bédarida, ed. p. 171-183

Here are a few questions to prepare the session and guide our discussion on the day.

1. How does your discipline relate to anthropology and what does an “anthropological approach” look like in your field ? Is it used to refer to a method, an object of interest, the use of certain concepts, a certain type of “gaze”, a question you ask of sources ?

2. Which books or authors have been most influential in shaping how anthropology is mobilized in your field ? And which have most influenced or inspired you ? How was your field transformed by the use of anthropoloical approaches ?

3. In your own work, have you used methods or concepts inspired by anthropology ? Have certain works by anthropologists inspired you ? What works and what doesn’t ? What are the pitfalls of such approaches ?

4. Do you feel your field has moved on from anthropology ?  Is that a definitive move or do you think there is a circling back towards this approach ?

In Lille with: Yannick Bardy (Lille), Matthew Laube (Birkbeck College London), Antoine Mazurek (independent researcher), Aude de Mézerac-Zanetti (Lille), Emmanuel Phatthanasinh (Lorraine), Daniel Trocmé-Later (Hamerton College, University of Cambridge) and Heleen Wyffels (KU Leuven/Lille)

On Zoom with: Olivier Andurand, Kenneth Fincham (Kent), Marianne Gillion (Uppsala), Anne Heminger (Tampa), Suzanna Ivanic (Kent), Chris Langley (Newman College), Andrew Poxon (Durham), Violet Soen (KU Leuven), Anne-Laure Van Bruaene (U. Gent), Micheline White (Carleton).


The network and workshop are generously supported and funded by ISITE-ULNE.





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