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Limits of Europeanness? Contested Notions of Difference and Belonging (16th–21st Centuries)

Fourteenth Annual Conference of the Research Network on the History of the Idea of Europe

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Published on Wednesday, August 02, 2023

Abstract

A basic tension inherent in any idea of Europe is that it links some set of “cultural values” to a geographical space on the western fringe of the Asian landmass, but at the same time allows for a significant degree of internal diversity. There is ample evidence for the force of visions of centre and periphery in this context. The variety of ways in which such mental maps have served to underpin notions of difference and belonging in the light of Europeanness are at the core of this conference.

Announcement

Presentation

A basic tension inherent in any idea of Europe is that it links some set of “cultural values” to a geographical space on the western fringe of the Asian landmass, but at the same time allows for a significant degree of internal diversity, the boundaries of which are constantly shifting and disputed. There is ample evidence for the continuing force of visions of centre and periphery in this context, both on the territorial and metaphorical level. The variety of ways in which such topographies of cultural values have served to underpin notions of difference and belonging in the light of Europeanness are at the core of this conference.

What Europe is or should be is particularly controversial in conflicts about inclusion and exclusion, but also in discourses about self-images in various regions of the continent. Historians and sociologists have emphasised the pivotal role played by “mental maps” – in the sense of value-laden geographies – in struggles over political domination, cultural hierarchies, and economic dependence within a space of interactions and mutual perceptions labelled “Europe”. In exploring this multi-faceted field of research, the conference brings together several disciplines ranging from history, intellectual history, and art history over cultural and literary studies to law and political science.

The focus lies on the relationships between imagined European centres and regions that have at various points in time been regarded as being on the periphery of Europe: be it in geographical terms (e.g. Russia, the British Isles, Scandinavia, the Balkans) or in other respects such as political system, religious creed, economic performance etc. How was the tension between nation building and continental integration understood? When and how were traditions of European values and the corresponding cognitive and normative patterns established? And who was marginalised by these processes?

The conference will be streamed online. If you would like to participate this way, please contact Sabine Robic (sabine.robic@uibk.ac.at) until 3 September 2023. The link will be provided via email shortly before the event.

Programme

Wednesday, 6 September 2023

09:00–10:30 Opening Session

Welcome Addresses and Introduction

  • Joachim Berger (Mainz): Negotiating Difference and Belonging in Europe: Findings and Perspectives from a Research Institute

10:30–11:00 Coffee Break

11:00–12:30 Panel 1: Europeanness (Re-)Considered

  • Matthijs Lok (Amsterdam): In Praise of Diversity: The Limits of Europeanness in Pluralist Narratives of History
  • Elisa Reato (Paris): Reflections on the European Question
  • Neus Rotger (Barcelona): Europe and Europeanness in Global Literary Studies

12:30–14:00 Lunch Break

14:00–15:30 Panel 2: Utopias and Dystopias

  • Florian Ambach (Innsbruck): Nationalizing Europe or Europeanizing the Nation? Transforming Images of Europe in the Work of the Schlegel Brothers (1801–1805)
  • Ferdinand Mowinckel (Florence): The Scandinavian European: Carl Bonnevie’s Vision of a United Europe in the Interwar Years
  • Marjet Brolsma (Amsterdam): A War of Words: Contested Notions of Europe in Second World War Propaganda

15:30–16:00 Coffee Break

16:00–17:30 Panel 3: Migrant Views

  • Maria Adamopoulou (Budapest): Southerners or Europeans? The Greek Gastarbeiter in West Germany
  • Francesco Vizzarri (Giessen): The Other Europe of Migrants: Italian Workers’ Organisations in West Germany and Their Idea of “Europe” in the 1970s
  • Werner Schroeder (Innsbruck): Accession Perspectives for European States to the EU

Evening activity: mountain trip (voluntary)

Thursday, 7 September 2023

08:30–09:30 Keynote 1

  • Frithjof Benjamin Schenk (Basel): Europe as Russia’s “Constituting Other”: From the Politics of Westernisation in the 18th to the “Post-European Age” in the 21st Centuries

09:30–11:00 Panel 4: Refuge and Exile

  • Alexandra Preitschopf (Klagenfurt): Bolsheviks as “Asian Barbarians”, Russian Democrats as “True Europeans”? Images of Russia and Self-Perception of Russian Émigrés in Interwar Anticommunism
  • Patricia Chiantera-Stutte (Bari): Europe and the EU in Some Works of the Dystopian Literature after 1989
  • Rieke Trimçev (Greifswald): The Shifting Mental Maps of Europe during Refugee Crises, 2015–2022

11:00–11:30 Coffee Break

11:30–13:00 Panel 5: Europe Confronting the Nation

  • Erkjad Kajo (Pavia/Athens): Debating Europeanness from the Margins: Geographical Imagination and Nation-Building in the Albanian and Greek Political Thought
  • Anna Marta Dworak (Rzeszów): Two Portraits of Nineteenth-Century Russia – Russia in La Russie en 1839 by the Marquis Astolphe de Custin and in the Diaries of Polish Exile Diarists
  • Arnab Dutta (Groningen): Europeanness and the Conceptual Divide between the British Isles and the Continent: Indian Students in Interwar Europe

13:00–14:30 Lunch Break

14:30–15:30 Keynote 2

  • Ina Habermann (Basel): Sailing to Byzantium? The Riddled Relationship between Britain and the Mediterranean

15:30–16:00 Coffee Break

16:00–17:30 Panel 6: Peripheries (and Centres)

  • Isabella Walser-Bürgler (Innsbruck): Flickers from the Fringe: Negotiating Europe in Early Modern Latin Texts on Borderland Regions
  • Ulrich Tiedau (London): A Turn of the Century Proponent of European Federation from the Continent’s “Periphery”: Jacques Novicov (1850–1912)
  • Filip Tomić (Zagreb): Stjepan Radić’s Europe: (Di)vision of the Continent from the Periphery of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy at the Turn of the Twentieth Century

19:00 Conference Dinner

Friday, 8 September 2023

09:00–10:00 Panel 7: Differences and Identity Claims

  • Torsten Korte (Sorengo/Berlin): European Würzburg and Oriental Venice: Notions of Cultural and Historical Difference in Giambattista Tiepolo’s History Paintings
  • Helen Williams (Norwich): Some Foreign Field: Written Notions of English Identity Relative to Europe after the First World War

10:00–11:00 Panel 8: Travelling Concepts

  • Lucio Valent (Milan): Sailing Oceans, Steppe and Jungles: Europe, the Europeans and the Worldwide Cultural Intersections in Emilio Salgari’s Literary Production
  • Ross Cameron (Glasgow/Strathclyde): The Balkan Wars (1912–1913) and the Idea of Europe in British Travel Writing

11:00–11:30Coffee Break

11:30–13:00 Panel 9: Borders and Spaces

  • Patrick Plaschg (Innsbruck): Conceptualising the “Barrier”: Spatial Planning Concepts of Integration and Separation as Value-Laden Common European Instruments of Diplomatic Actors to Secure Peace during the War of the Spanish Succession (1701–1713/14)
  • Muriel Gonzales Athenas (Innsbruck): European Geographies at the End of the Early Modern Period: Techniques of Construction
  • Nicole Brandstetter (Munich): Discourse of Exclusion and Border Crossings in John Lanchester’s Novel The Wall

13:00–13:30 Final Discussion and Farewell

Organisation

Innsbruck Research Centre “Concepts of Europe” in collaboration with the “Institute for the Study of Ideas of Europe” at the University of East Anglia (Norwich)

Local Organisers: Stefan Ehrenpreis, Niels Grüne (both Department of History and European Ethnology), Dorothee Birke (Department of English)

Contact

Sabine Robic E-Mail: sabine.robic@uibk.ac.at

Places

  • Claudiana - Herzog-Friedrich-Straße 3
    Innsbruck city center, Austria (6020)

Event attendance modalities

Hybrid event (on site and online)


Date(s)

  • Wednesday, September 06, 2023
  • Thursday, September 07, 2023
  • Friday, September 08, 2023

Keywords

  • European History, Cultural Values, Mental Maps, Identity Construction, Centres and Peripheries

Contact(s)

  • Sabine Robic
    courriel : sabine [dot] robic [at] uibk [dot] ac [dot] at

Reference Urls

Information source

  • Niels Gruene
    courriel : niels [dot] gruene [at] uibk [dot] ac [dot] at

License

CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Limits of Europeanness? Contested Notions of Difference and Belonging (16th–21st Centuries) », Conference, symposium, Calenda, Published on Wednesday, August 02, 2023, https://doi.org/10.58079/1bnt

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