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Conference details

3-4 May 2012
Maison française d’Oxford


Draft programme:

Registration form:


Academic arrangements:


Conference - Louis XIV: Outside In
Reactions and Responses to the Sun King beyond France

A conference at the Maison française d’Oxford, 3-4 May 2012: organized by The Williamite Universe and the Maison française

Louis XIV has always been a great figure of European history, and considerable scholarly attention has been devoted to his own policies, and his influence over his realm. There has also been some excellent work on his impact outside France. However, there has been no systematic attempt to examine reactions to the king across a range of countries, and so to gain a more holistic view of what Louis XIV meant outside his own immediate sphere. This conference will attempt to fill this gap. It will map the variety of ways reactions to Louis shaped discussion and action across Europe and the globe; and will provide a forum for stimulating comparative history.

Major themes of discussion will include the perception of Louis as a threat to the balance of Europe as it played out in different countries; the various ways in which France’s absolutist state was used elsewhere in debates about political, administrative, financial and military structures; perceptions of – and reactions to – Louis’s religious policies and his expansions along France’s eastern border; imitations or rejections of French court culture; accommodations with France as a commercial and imperial rival; and varying constructions of Louis’s rhetorical or pictorial image in the non-French press.

The working language of the conference will be English. However, the organisers will attempt to make contributions in French comprehensible by attempting rapid translation of oral interventions at the event.  

Interspersed with the panel sessions, there will be four plenary talks:

Professor Tim Harris (Brown, Providence RI, US),‘Francophobia in late Stuart England’
Professor David Hayton (Queens, Belfast, UK), ‘Louis XIV, James II, and the conflict in Ireland’
Professor Henk van Nierop (Amsterdam, NL),Romeyn de Hooghe’s Louis XIV’
Professor Hendrik Ziegler (Hamburg, D),‘Image battles under Louis XIV’

A draft programme, listing all the panel sessions can be downloaded:

Registration (for non-speakers) is £30 (to help cover the costs of lunches, refreshments, administration and post-graduate speakers). Downloadable registration form available:

If you have any questions about the academic arrangements of the conference – please contact Tony Claydon ( or Charles-Edouard Levillain ( For questions about registration, please contact Linda Jones (

This conference is generously sponsored by:


Society for Renaissance Studies

Maison Francaise d'Oxford