Flavours of the Eighteenth Century

Schermafbeelding 2015-12-29 om 10.43.23In the annual conference, The Dutch-Belgian Society for 18th century studies will be focusing on the role played by taste and smell, in a century when both theoretical discourse and daily routine were strongly influenced by sensualist ideas.

The original Calls for papers can be found here:

Thursday, March 10

11:00-12:00: General Meeting of the Dutch-Belgian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies

12:00-13:00: registration + lunch


  • Welcome by Fokko Jan Dijksterhuis (Universiteit Twente), President of the Dutch-Belgian Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies
  • Introduction Beatrijs Vanacker (KU Leuven) and Klaas Van Gelder (Universiteit Gent)

13:30-14:30: Keynote 1: Viktoria von Hoffmann (Université de Liège): The Sense of Taste in Eighteenth-Century Europe. A Lower and Ambiguous Sense

14:30-15:30: Senses, Cultural Identities and Otherness (1)

  • Mara van der Lugt (Universität Göttingen): Taste, Sex and Aphrodisiacs: Sensual Encounters with the Islamic Paradise
  • Malgorzata Sokołowicz (Warsaw University): Oriental Smells and Tastes in 18th-Century Feminine Travel Literature (Turkish Letters by Lady Montagu and My Life’s Travels and Adventures by Salomée Halpir)

15:30 – 16:00: Coffee Break

16:00-17:30: Senses, Cultural Identities and Otherness (2)

  • Katarzyna Grzymała (Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University Warsaw): American Food and Dining Culture in the Eyes of Two Writers of the Polish Enlightenment
  • Elizabeth Schmidt (Texas A&M University at Qatar): Elegance and Extravagance: British Responses to French Food in the Eighteenth Century
  • Lieke van Deinsen (Rijksmuseum Amsterdam & Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen): Defining Vernacular Literary Taste in the Early Eighteenth-Century Dutch Republic

17:30 – 18:00: Caro Verbeek: Odours of the eighteenth century – Performance


Friday, March 11

9:00-10:00: Keynote 2: Holly Dugan (The George Washington University, Washington): Sensory Ravishment in Seventeenth-Century English poetry

10:00 – 11:00: Images of Taste and Smell

  • Julia Burbulla (Universität Bern): Sensory Games in Early Modern Garden Entertainment
  • Mylène Mistre-Schaal (Université de Strasbourg): Smelling the Other: Attraction and Repulsion in 18th-Century Art

11:00-11:30: Coffee Break

11:30 – 13:00: Senses and Science

  • Ann-Sophie Barwich & Donna Bilak (Columbia University, New York): Vials and Vinaigrettes: The Manipulation of Odour in 18th-Century French Science and Society
  • Marianne Klemun (Universität Wien): Stones and Taste: ‘Vulgar Reasoning’ in Earth Sciences
  • Rob Blijleven (Vrije Universiteit Brussel): Wijnpraat en smaakontwikkeling in vroegmodern Nederland [Wine speech and taste development in the early modern Netherlands]

13:00-14:00: lunch

14:00 – 14:30: Prize Award of the DBSECS “Scriptieprijs”

14:30-15:30: SensesSocial Identities and Perception (1)

  • Anna Castelli (Europa-Universität Viadrina, Frankfurt o/d Oder): The Scent of Luxury. Literary Dimensions of a Volatile Experience
  • Nicholas B. Miller (Universität Göttingen): The « Appetite for Society »: Lord Kames’ Sketches of the Global History of Dining

15:30-16:00: Coffee Break

16:00-17:00: SensesSocial Identities and Perception (2)

  • Maria Pirogovskaya (European University St. Petersburg): A Long Way to Temperance: Eighteenth-Century Russian Cookbooks and Medical Treatises on Strong Flavours and Feeble Fibers
  • William Tullett (King’s College London): Eighteenth-Century Olfactory Vocabularies and the ‘Perceptual Revolution’

17:00-17:20: Concluding Remarks: Beatrijs Vanacker (KU Leuven) and Klaas Van Gelder (Universiteit Gent)

17:20-18:00: Reception



The conference is organized with the support of:Dia2-001.jpg