Dr H. Brinkman (1958) has been appointed Professor of Textual Scholarship, with a special focus on the Middle Ages, in the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Amsterdam (UvA). This chair is sponsored by the Huygens Institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW).
Herman Brinkman's teaching and research activities will centre on issues surrounding text traditions and editing of Middle Dutch sources in the period of the handwritten book in particular. He will focus on such characteristic medieval phenomena as text instability, variability, clustering and associated socio-institutional aspects, paying particular attention to the relationship between the book as a historical fixation of texts and text conglomerates and the dynamic process of transmission and dissemination. In his work, Brinkman will search for ways to ensure that research into miscellanies (constituting a main focus) is optimally in line with contemporary approaches to editing. He will also use insights concerning the shifting options and limitations in editing to inform the role of editions in teaching, cultural education and as tools for scientific analysis. In addition, Brinkman will engage in international discussions on text traditions, such as that being conducted about developments prompted by digitalisation technologies.
Brinkman will be lecturing within the department of Dutch Language and Literature, whose curriculum includes courses of interest to not only students of Dutch, but also those of Neo-Latin, Modern Languages, History, Art History, Musicology, Religious Studies and Philosophy, all of which incorporate the study of mediaeval and early modern handwritten sources.
Brinkman studied Dutch Language and Literature at the UvA, where he was also awarded his PhD cum laude in 1997 under Prof. Herman Pleij for his dissertation Dichten uit Liefde: Literatuur in Leiden aan het einde van de Middeleeuwen (‘Poems of Love: Literature in Leiden at the end of the Middle Ages'). Since 2000 he has worked at the KNAW's Huygens Institute, first on the scientific project staff and subsequently as a researcher in the Middle Ages/Renaissance Department. Brinkman is currently a Senior Researcher and directs two project clusters: one on medieval Dutch miscellanies and the other on transnational cultural transfer. He also sits on the Board of Directors of the European Society for Textual Scholarship and is a member of the Medieval Miscellanies from the Low Countries project committee, made up of representative experts on Middle Dutch language and literature from the Netherlands and Flanders.