An academic gathering – be it a symposium, a conference, or a round-table – to examine the work of a fellow scholar is invariably timely. At the very least it presupposes a consensus on the basic significance of the subject being addressed and a collective decision to address it. As a launch of a new book (in Ukraine a phenomenon known as prezentatsiia), it provides the welcome opportunity to discuss a new contribution and with that to fill in and redraw our map of the field. If more than one work or project is involved, it provides a still greater opportunity, and indeed poses a scholarly obligation, to see the larger picture and to engage in stock-taking and rethinking. By contextualizing, problematizing, and where need be, deconstructing, we recalibrate our understanding and thus revive the field and our commitment to it. Clearly, the process of laudatio, of paying homage to achievements spanning a whole career, also contributes to this.
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