Call for Papers – Power and Identity in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean

The Mediterranean Seminar is seeking proposals for panels on “Culture, Power and Identity in the Pre-Modern Mediterranean,” organized by Brian Catlos [Religious Studies CU Boulder/Humanities UC Santa Cruz] and Sergio La Porta (Armenian Studies, CSU Fresno)  to be submitted for consideration for the annual meeting of the American Historical Association to be held January 2-5, 2015 in New York City.

Mediterranean Studies represents an approach that is transforming our view of the history of Pre-Modern Europe, North Africa and the Middle East by taking an inter-disciplinary and comparative approach to the history of the Medieval West (ie.: the area west of the Indus), by “provincializing” Europe, eschewing grand teleological narratives, and by interrogating essentializing categories that have dominated historical analysis when deployed uncritically and universally (e.g.: Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Europe, Byzantium, the Near East…).

We are seeking proposals that focus on the intersection of culture, power and religious and ethnic identity, on communal relations, and/or on processes of acculturation, translatio, and conflict in the broader Mediterranean.

In principle we will propose two panels: “Ideals” and “Action” — the former focusing on the ideology of pre-Modern identity politics and its expression, and the latter on the outcomes of  policy and practice in this regard.

Papers focusing on social, political and economic history are welcome, but we are particularly interested in papers that are interdisciplinary in nature and/or that focus on art history, musicology, architecture, philosophy, history of science and medicine, the construction of class and/or gender identity, material culture or literature, and/or that focus on traditionally understudied groups (e.g.: Berbers, Copts, Armenians) and/or that combine approaches or take a chronologically or regionally comparative approach.

Please submit a proposals for 20-minute papers to be presented in person to Brian Catlos ( and Sergio La Porta ( on or before Thursday, February 6 for consideration. Include a 150-200 word abstract and a 2-page CV, and indicate whether you will need to request AV equipment, and put “AHA Proposal” in the subject line.

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