Rethinking the Mediterranean

Rethinking the Mediterranean lead image

History and Historiography issues on the Eastern Mediterranean. History - Histories of the Mediterranean / Story - Stories in the Mediterranean, Athens, May 9–13, 2016

The École française d’Athènes and the National Hellenic Research Foundation seek applicants for a doctoral workshop entitled “History and Historiography issues on the Eastern Mediterranean. History - Histories of the Mediterranean / Story - Stories in the Mediterranean”. Seventeen doctoral students will be selected to participate in a week long training with presentations and discussions of around PhD projects, plenary conferences, personalized meetings as well as the visit of a museum or an archaeological site.

Funded through the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) of the European Commission, the doctoral workshop offers an international framework for exchange and discussion of analytical and methodological issues on the Mediterranean. The aim is to question how researchers engage in a multifaceted approach of the Mediterranean, as a historical and geographical entity, as an object of historiography, and/or as an analytical category.

From Braudel’s Mediterranean to the Mediterranean of P. Horden and N. Purcell, discussion has always focused on the long or short terms, on the rhythms or arrhythmias of History, reflecting a general overview or the micro-regions’ image, questioning the relation between Geography and History, the significance of cities and their development, the multiple connectivities and ruptures, the urban, agricultural and mountain landscapes, communication issues and trade routes, land travels and waterways, the mobility of populations, products, the movements of ideas in history.

This doctoral workshop seeks to bring together young researchers whose studies discuss Mediterranean subjects and for whom the Mediterranean constitutes an essential object of analysis or a major analytical category in their work. This call is open to all PhD students whose research focuses on History - Histories of the Mediterranean / Story - Stories in the Mediterranean, and especially on the Eastern Mediterranean, from the 15th century to the present times: Conflicts, memories and sites of memory, diaspora matters, trade routes and routes of ideas, exchange and communication, exchange of populations and migration, inter-cultural transactions and métissages, questions of identity and identification practices, government practices and governance. The present doctoral workshop aims to bring together researchers beyond the specifics of their particular topic or their historical approach.

Proposals can thus belong to one or more of the following axes: Transnational history and connected history, urban history, social history, rural history, political history, history of education, maritime history, history of cartography and representations of space, history of literature and art history, cultural transfers, history of the intellectuals and intellectual history in the Mediterranean, etc.

Whatever the object of research might be, the proposals should focus on the main question which can be resumed as it follows: With particular regard to modern times, the various histories / stories in and of the Mediterranean are they really stories shaped by the specificities of the Mediterranean space? Or, on the contrary, the Mediterranean space has been constructed and invented as a particular concept by these histories and stories? What could thus be the role of the individuals, or possibly the significance of singular events? The Eastern Mediterranean is it distinctive from the Western Mediterranean? The Eastern Mediterranean has however not been considered as an entity in the same way or with the same intensity as the Western Mediterranean. How do historiographical agendas reflect and combine social demand, political orientations, geopolitical strategies, intellectual priorities of the moment and heritages of the past?

This week of training will provide a space of work on the archives in the Mediterranean (written or audiovisual, issues of conservation and dissemination), on common methodological tools and on the role of digital humanities. This workshop will thus offer the opportunity to discuss significant issues of Mediterranean historiography, coming from various subjects and different contexts.