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5-6 avril 2017, Cambridge : Consumers of the exotic: European commerce and the consumption of materia medica, 1670-1730

The workshop will explore the ways in which exotic plant materials were processed, bought and consumed in European metropoles and at royal courts, in the decades around 1700. Why did European consumers buy—and more significantly ingest—exotic plant materials? How did they understand their properties and significance? How was their consumption shaped hospital trials, advertising, and the behavior of high-profile trend-setters, particularly at royal courts? When and why was the efficacy and even safety of given exotic drugs questioned or cast into doubt? And which experts could credibly pronounce upon their effects on the European body?

Please find the programme below. All are welcome, but please inform Dr Justin Rivest (jr723 at cam.ac.uk) if you wish to attend, as numbers may be limited for reasons of space.

April 5

COFFEE
10:30-10:45
Emma Spary and Justin Rivest
WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION
10:45-11:00

Session I CONSUMPTION CASE STUDIES
11:00-12:30
G. A. Cook University of Hong Kong
Consuming the exotic in Switzerland: Garcin’s ‘Maduran pills’
Irene Fattacciu University of Turin Reasons and implications of changes in food consuming patterns: the appropriation and diffusion of chocolate between Spain and New Spain

LUNCH BREAK
12:30-14:00

Session II NETWORKS OF KNOWLEDGE
14:00-16:00
Samir Boumediene CNRS Lyon Jesuits’ recipes, Jesuits’ receipts: the Society of Jesus and the introduction of exotic drugs in 17th century Europe.
Šebestián Kroupa University of Cambridge Producing and consuming drugs in Manila at the turn of the eighteenth century
Victoria Pickering British Museum Contributors and connections: exotic material in Hans Sloane’s botanical collection

COFFEE BREAK
16:00-16:15

Session III DECENTERING THE EXOTIC
16:15-18:15
B. Harun Küçük University of Pennsylvania
Ali Münşi (d.1750) and American exotica
Clare Griffin Max Planck Institute for the History of Science
What is ‘exotic’ anyway? The view from Moscow
Paula De Vos San Diego State University
Appropriation of the exotic in the Palestra pharmaceutica (Madrid, 1706) of Félix Palacios

DINNER
20:00

Session IV KNOWING AND EXPERIENCING THE EXOTIC
09:30-11:30
Emma Spary University of Cambridge
The inscrutability of cinnamon: how to prove when you had the right drug
Hjalmar Fors Karolinska Institutet
The exotic in the here and now of early modern European experience
Laia Portet University of Cambridge
Choosing drugs and naming the exotic in Paris

April 6

COFFEE BREAK
11:30-11:45

Session V REACHING THE CONSUMER
11:45-13:15
Wouter Klein Universiteit Utrecht
Exotic drugs and the intricate balance of the early modern medical market: a case study of Peruvian bark and negative publicity, c. 1730
Justin Rivest University of Cambridge
Medicating the French foot soldier, 1689-1714: The role of exotic drugs

LUNCH
13:15-14:45
PLANNING SESSION FOR VOLUME
14:45-15:30
CLOSE
15:30

Emma Spary and Justin Rivest, University of Cambridge

NB: The workshop immediately follows Dr Valentina Pugliano’s conference on ’Medicine, Environment and Health in the Eastern Mediterranean World, 1400-1750’ on 3-4 April, which may be of interest to participants. Please don’t contact Justin about this, as it is a separate event—contact Valentina at valentina.pugliano chez gmail.com

Justin Rivest, PhD
Research Associate
Faculty of History
University of Cambridge
phone: 07514 160602
e-mail: jr723 chez cam.ac.uk