Journal article

Academic writings and the rituals of early modern universities

G Wiesenfeldt

Intellectual History Review | Taylor & Francis | Published : 2016


There is a tendency to regard the early modern university as a transitional stage of the institutional form from its medieval origins to its manifestation in the modern research university. This tendency has a dual perspective – it can focus on how universities were still dominated by medieval ways of learning or it can look for traces of what later became the modern.1 However, not all changes that happened at universities between 1500 and 1800 can easily be interpreted either as attempts to overcome the medieval system of learning or as modernising instances. Instead, often changes were made in reaction to problems that had arisen within the system of early modern universities or in reactio..

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