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Governing the Borders, Challenging the State. Cultures of Disobedience in Eastern Europe and the Balkans (16th –beginning of the 19th centuries)

TEPSIS Workshop 

Friday 16 November 2018, 14h-19h

Paris, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales 

105 Boulevard Raspail, room 13 

Coordinators : Radu G. PĂUN (CERCEC), Laurent TATARENKO (IEŚW/CERCEC) 

ENG: As classic topics of modern history, collective disobedience/revolt movements have traditionally been studied from an economic or/and sociological perspective. These last years have brought an important methodological renewal, which gives large room to anthropological reflection and to comparatist approaches, by emphasizing some “new” aspects: the imaginary and the staging of the rebellions/uprisings, the plurality of the speeches and memories, the transfers of experience, etc. However, this renewal had little impact on studies devoted to Eastern Europe and the Balkans, which continue to deal with these topics in a socio-economic key or to regard them as a direct antecedent of the movements of national liberation in the nineteenth century. 

Our workshop proposes a critical review of studies dedicated to these issues at European and extra-European level with the aim of building methodological tools that could be applied to the Eastern Europe and the Balkans. One of the contributions of this approach is to include these areas in the overall reflection on collective disobedience in the modern era, which will eventually lead to drawing up a connected history of these phenomena at various scales. 

Our investigation begins in the first decades of the sixteenth century with the consolidation of the northern border of the Ottoman Empire and continues until the end of the Napoleonic period, marked by the formation of the Holy Alliance in 1815 and the establishment of a new balance of power in this part of Europe. We pay particular attention to border areas, where belonging to one political entity or another has repeatedly raised serious problems, both within the States concerned and between competing neighbors. This look from the margins towards the center will allow us to consider under a new angle the mechanisms of governance and the process of modern states building in this region. 

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