From the Middle Ages to 1848

25th conference of Prague City Archives and of the Institute of International Studies of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University Prague, October, 10-12, 2006

Dear colleagues, dear friends,

it has been already five years, since we live in the millenium, that makes an effort to present itself by artificial intelligence, sofisticated technology and perhaps even by human society full of intelligence. This is why we got an idea to return to the roofs of modern urban society and to study the role of intellectuals in Prague´s and comparable cities´ history from the Middle Ages at least to the beginning of civil society.

At first let us think about the question, who actually was „intellectual“ at the changing periods of time and how did his competence, station, self-confidence, self-presentation and social prestige changed? What standards had the city intellectuals to fulfil? To the beginning of the modern society certainly played an important role Latin literacy. The academical grade not even socially raised, but also improved one´s position at the work market and wedded market.

How did city intellectual differ from city elites? Above all, they could not have been necessarily elite both with their rank and with personal linkages to the political elite at the city. To the intellectuals belonged scholars from university and schools, educators at the palaces of the nobility and private scholars as well. Which position took those people at the life and hierarchical structures of Prague and similar cities?

To the intellectuals belonged also city doctors, jurists at the state service or at municipal government or at magistrate administration even at the position of lawyers or registrars. Here belonged also technical intelligence, whose formal qualification became normalized at the end of pursued period of time.

Alone stands secular and ecclesiastical clergy living and attending a dense net of rectories, capitulations, churches, hospitals and schools. Prague archbishop was also a chancellor of the Charles University – though it was a proverbial tip of the iceberg, because the church represented an ideal milieu for racing of many intellectual subjects and activities deep to the 19th century. When and for which conditions ended this use?

Furthermore, how did the artists involve the intellectual life of the city? We do not think only about the court artists or artists serving to the aristocracy but we think even about the "artistic artisans" and their role during the generation of an intellectual atmosphere of the city.

How was the life style of the city intellectuals? It is possible to find out some fixed moments, stereotype plates, socially imperative traditions, that could influence through the ages? How was formed or changed a social position of the intellectuals at the structure and in the period look of its time? The intellectuals were a part of so-called "gelehrte Republik", that means of an erudite state of wise men. Is this valid for the Czech lands and its close neighbourhood?

We approach you to take part as a reader of paper. Our conference will be in October, 10-12, 2006 at representative halls of Clam-Gallas palace (Husova str. 20, Prague 1). Please send your applications till March 15th, 2006 on the address written below. The conference languages are not given yet, organisers think about Czech, German and Polish language (interpretation is managed). Conference fee is not collected. The papers are to be published at the proceedings Documenta Pragensia.

For organisers

Doc. dr. Václav Ledvinka
Prof. Jiøí Pešek

contact address:
dr. Olga Fejtova
Archiv hl. mesta Prahy
Archivni 6
149 00 Prague 4