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Balkan Worlds III Conference: Power Networks in the Imperial and Post-Imperial Balkans, 18th – 20th

Balkan Worlds III
Power Networks in the Imperial and Post-Imperial Balkans (18th – 20th c.)

The communicative origins of the concept of «networks» and the fact that they often act as a vacant signifier in historical analysis, replacing terms and semantic tools of earlier theoretical approaches, albeit without this necessarily being a prerequisite, created the conditions for a critical approach to the overuse of this concept. As David Bell correctly observed when commenting on the growth of global history as the result of a methodological insistence on the issue of communication networks that the latter didn?t play a bigger role in a globalized perception of history than, for example, the growth and spread of socialist internationalist ideas in the 19th century. Nevertheless, a question remains: if precisely the meaning of the political that supposedly transcends the meaning of the communication aspect, could also be defined on the growth or transformation of the social networks creating the conditions for concentrating social and cultural capital and thus the reconstruction of the dominant political sphere. The conference will insist precisely on the manner, preconditions, and process according to which social networks can be transformed into power networks in the framework of an empire or within the framework of a nation state in the Balkans from the 18th through the 20th century. More specifically, the scientific committee would select the research of relationships with political power in the following types of social networks:

The Conference

The conference will insist precisely on the manner, preconditions, and process according to which social networks can be transformed into power networks in the framework of an empire or within the framework of a nation state in the Balkans from the 18th through the 20th century. More specifically, the scientific committee would select the research of relationships with political power in the following types of social networks:

  • intellectual or scholarly networks
  • commercial or merchant networks
  • diaspora networks
  • clerical networks
  • patronage or clientelistic networks
  • political networks
  • scientific or academic networks

The working language of the Conference will be English. The conference will be held in Thessaloniki on October 6-8, 2016 by the Department of Balkan, Slavic and Oriental Studies, University of Macedonia.

Scientific Committee

The Conference Scientific Committee members and plenary speakers along with the titles of their presentations are the following:

Karen Barkey

University of California, Berkeley

Studying Networks in History: Examples from the Comparative Study of Empires

Edhem Eldem

Boğaziçi University, Istanbul

1876: The Year the Tanzimat Ended

Benjamin C. Fortna

The University of Arizona

The networks of a Special Operations officer

Hannes Grandits

Humboldt University, Berlin

Bridging Cleavages. Patronage as a Factor of Social (Dis-) Integration in the Late Ottoman Balkans

Olga Katsiardi

University of Athens

The Merchants Worlds: a Dialogue between Southeastern European Commercial Networks with the Central Europe and the Mediterranean

Dimitris Stamatopoulos

University of Macedonia, Thessaloniki

Power Networks: reflections and definitions

Conference Programm

Conference Website