Enlightenment Workshop

The Enlightenment Workshop is Oxford’s leading seminar in 18th-century intellectual history and literary culture. Convened by the Voltaire Foundation by Nicholas Cronk (St Edmund Hall) and Avi Lifschitz (Magdalen College), it usually takes place in the spring and summer terms (Hilary and Trinity).

The seminars in 2023-24 are taking place in-person in the Sophia Sheppard Room and the Summer Common Room, Magdalen College (please refer to the programme for the respective venue).


Enlightenment Workshop 2023-24

We are delighted to present our programme for the academic year 2023-24. You can find a pdf version of the programme by following this link.

An interdisciplinary research seminar supported by the Faculty of History, the Faculty of Modern Languages, and the Voltaire Foundation

Wednesdays at 5:00pm unless stated otherwise

Michaelmas Term

25 Oct.            Kevin Hilliard (St Peter’s College, Oxford)

Turning the page on the reign of Frederick the Great: Mirabeau, Zimmermann and the ‘Berlin Enlightenment’, 1786-1792

(Summer Common Room)


8 Nov.             Béla Kapossy (Lausanne)

The Enlightenment origins of historicism

(Summer Common Room)


22 Nov.            Matthijs Lok (Amsterdam)

Cosmopolitanism against revolution: counter-revolutionary legacies of the Enlightenment

(Summer Common Room)


29 Nov.           Mara van der Lugt (St Andrews)

The animal question: from Bayle to Bentham

(Sophia Sheppard Room)


Hilary Term


24 Jan           Joseph Harris (Royal Holloway, London)

The play’s the thing: Jean-François Ducis’s Hamlet (1769-1815) 

(Summer Common Room)


7 Feb.              Zoe Screti (Harris Manchester College, Oxford)

Cataloguing the Enlightenment: classification, marginalisation, and digital scholarship

(Sophia Sheppard Room)


14 Feb.             Minchul Kim (Sungkyunkwan University, Seoul)

11:00am          Étienne-Géry Lenglet and the political economy of equality for the modern republic

(Online session with the Global Intellectual History Unit, Sungkyunkwan University. Link to join: https://zoom.us/j/2739110432)


22 Feb.                         Damien Tricoire (Trier)

Putting the Enlightenment in its place: religion, moral leadership and the genealogy of the 18th-century age of improvement

(Summer Common Room)


6 Mar.             Jessica Goodman (St Catherine’s College, Oxford)

Imagined afterlives in eighteenth-century France

(Sophia Sheppard Room)


Trinity Term

8 May              Paola Rumore (Turin)

Philosophical narratives and the formation of national culture: the case of the Leibnizian-Wolffian tradition

(Summer Common Room)


15 May             Sonja Asal (Halle)

Manners and political stability in a commercial republic: the case of France, c. 1795-1799

(Sophia Sheppard Room)


22 May            Sylvana Tomaselli (Cambridge)

The dialectics of myth in the Enlightenment

(Summer Common Room)


29 May            Roman Kuhn (St Edmund Hall, Oxford)

Doing things with poetry: uses and reuses of poésie fugitive in the long 18th century                  

(Summer Common Room)

Voltaire Foundation

We use cookies to help give you the best experience on our website. By continuing without changing your cookie settings, we assume you agree to this. Please read our cookie policy to find out more. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.