At a ceremony on 21 November 2017, Centre Director, Professor of Church History Mette Birkedal Bruun, received Einar Hansen’s Research Prize for her contribution to research in the Humanities.
Birkedal Bruun’s research, which has previously manifested itself in an ERC project Solitudes, can be described as ‘a long-term search for the relationship between extroversion and introversion, between public and private life’. Birkedal Bruun’s research has, among other things, centered on the paradoxical relationship between medieval and Early Modern monks’ withdrawal from and engagement in the world. Recently, she has become the director of The Danish National Research Foundation Centre for Privacy Studies, which will investigate the development of the private sphere in the period 1500-1800 with perspectives to the present day.
Comprehensive research in the Humanities
Chair of the Einar Hansen Research Fund, Professor Frans Gregersen, emphasized the importance of the ‘comprehensive humanities’ that Mette Birkedal Bruun represents. He described Birkedal Bruun’s work as having a church historical focus and broad cultural perspectives.
As a motivation for awarding the prize, the Fund writes: ‘The Einar Hansen Research Fund grants Professor Mette Birkedal Bruun the research prize of the year for the uncompromising manner in which she follows her own ways and inspires others with her research that at first glance seems narrow, but soon appears to have all-encompassing, almost universal perspectives. Mette Birkedal Bruun is a true explorer, a real guide.’
Top researchers in the Humanities
Alongside Mette Birkedal Bruun, Associate Professor Nicolo Dell’Unto (Institutionen för Arkeologi och Antikens Historia, University of Lund), and Professor Emeritus Troels Engberg-Pedersen (The Faculty of Theology, University of Copenhagen) received awards for their contribution to research in the Humanities, while Architect Dorte Mandrup received the annual Art, Design & Architecture Prize.
Einar Hansens Fond, founded by the Danish-Swedish patron Einar Hansen, annually awards the Einar Hansen Fund’s Research Prize. As a conclusion to his long work within, among other things, shipping, Einar Hansen founded a fund as support for research in the Humanities conducted by researchers at the universities in Copenhagen and in Lund. With the price follows 150,000 Danish kroner.