EXTENDED DEADLINE: Call for Participation - Summer School Upper Adriatic Borderlands: Transitions, Identities and Urban Spaces in The Port City of Trieste and Hinterland (from XIXth to XXIth century)

Alessandro Carrieri's picture
Summer Program
May 15, 2022
Subject Fields: 
Borderlands, Contemporary History, Cultural History / Studies, European History / Studies, Modern European History / Studies

Università degli Studi di Trieste 11-15 July 2022 


The expression "border identity" used by Angelo Ara and Claudio Magris in their book published in 1982 (Trieste. Un identità di frontiera) also characterizes all the towns of the eastern Adriatic which have been in contact with the Mediterranean, Ottoman, Balkan and Germanic worlds. More recently, Egidio Ivetić evokes the "Mediterranean border" (Un confine del Mediterraneo. L'Adriatico orientale tra Italia e Slavia (1300-1900), Rome, Viella, 2014). The first changes take place with the withdrawal of the Ottomans. Equally important for our purposes is the demise of Venice at the turn of the 18th century. These two evolutions in the geopolitical map from the Adriatic to the Aegean Sea modify many parameters by the arrival of new actors (state and parastatal, national movements) but many are on the contrary part of a continuity that resists these variations of powers. and sovereignties (trade, movement of elites). 


The scientific interest of the project is great because little has yet been done about this area in a really comparative and transdisciplinary way, each shore of the Adriatic being dominated by a narrative construction based on nationalism. Historians of the Modern era have reflected more on the identity of the confines within the framework of the Triplex confinium, yet there is a lack of studies for the contemporary period that cross sources and stories. The ambition of this first summer school is to propose a deepening of the concepts of identity and borders through the example of the Eastern Adriatic: interventions on the basis of theoretical reflections will be proposed to the participants in order to achieve a discussion of their relevance and application to the region. The variation of these same identities will constitute the heart of the work: identities necessarily crossed ("incrociate") and moving over the long term. 


Our subject initially concerns more particularly urban centers and we will seek to question their evolution over the whole period through several phenomena: migrations, composition and evolution of elites, participation, privatization of space public, memorial constructions. We want to go beyond the chronological framework that separates the modern and contemporary eras to explore the continuities, obviously marked by several breaks, which structure perceptions. The economic stakes will not be absent because most of these cities have a port activity: commercial, industrial and military which affects their development and that of their hinterland; it also positions them against centers of power, puts them in competition and produces a discourse of identification. The successive integration of cities into different administrative frameworks obliges their elites and their populations to reorient themselves in the face of a more or less distant central power. The centre-periphery theme can bring us food for thought here since it has evolved a lot over the long term by imposing new loyalties or generating disputes. 

The objective is also that of a cross-period dialogue, between modernist and contemporary historians, and multidisciplinary (archaeology, law, geography, anthropology, art history, political science, sociology) with the contribution of professionals (museums, cultural programmers, artists, writers, journalists). Our goal is also to stimulate new research on these questions since the comparative aspect is still little addressed due to the compartmentalization of periods and national schools. Participation in the workshops will nurture young research and help to better disseminate it. 


The sessions will be designed as spaces for discussion. It is therefore envisaged to propose, upstream of the workshop, texts of reflection clarifying aspects of the theme of each workshop, which will allow the participants to dialogue. Each half-day will revolve around a presentation made by a speaker followed by a doctoral workshop. In order not to lock ourselves into hyper-specialization, theoretical and methodological insights will be provided by speakers from other disciplines and other geographical eras. Excursions and evening activities will be offered to the participants. 


From Monday, July 11 to Friday, July 15 the summer school will host about fifteen doctoral and M2 students in history, art history, geography, anthropology, and literature. Transportation costs must be covered by their training institutions; accommodation and meals will be provided by the organizing institutions. The first three days will be held in Trieste, a field trip will be organized in Koper/Capodistria on Thursday and the rest of the workshop will resume in Trieste. 


The applications together with a CV and a summary of the dissertation project (3000 signs) must be sent to:  summerschoolts2022@gmail.com before the 15th of May 2022. The selection of the participants will be published at the end of May.  


Organizing institutions: École française de Rome, École française d'Athènes, CETOBAC (UMR 8032 CNRS/EHESS), Université Aix-Marseille (Institut SoMuM, UMR 7303 TELEMe AMU-CNRS), Università degli Studi di Trieste.

Contact Info: 

Dr. Alessandro Carrieri on behalf of the Summer School Organizing Committee

University of Trieste