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The Southeastern Aegean and the World: Premodern Roots of a Postmodern Cultural and Economic Coastal Network

Abstract : This paper deals with the role of the southeastern Aegean's inhabitants in the development of an elaborate network of seaports at a global scale. Since ancient times, population movement flows have been one of the main characteristics of the Mediterranean world. At the end of the Ottoman era, diverse manifestations of trans-Mediterranean mobilities formed a dynamic and coherent network of port-cities, extended from Istanbul and Salonica to Port Said and Alexandria, and from Alexandretta, Haifa, and Gaza to Marseille. The Empire’s collapse and the emergence of modernity increased the need for exploring new destinations, capable of providing economic opportunities for employment and trade. To this end, Mediterranean port-cities have started to interconnect with seaports in the United States, Australia, France, and the Caribbean through people in motion bringing wide-ranging socio-political changes to host societies while maintaining vivid links with their homelands. In this perspective, the geohistorical trajectory of the Dodecanese islands' population constitutes an interesting case-study. Incorporated into the Greek State in 1947, the archipelago has been subject to various geopolitical antagonisms that affected its demographics, but also shaped the conditions of its future dynamics and performance. The existence of a large cluster of Dodecanesian communities abroad –linking the southeastern Aegean region to the world– underlines the importance of tangible and intangible connections between coastal cities in the context of Globalization, while challenging established interpretational concepts that tend to separate postmodernity from its premodern counterpart.
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https://hal-paris1.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02992755
Contributor : Ioannis Georgikopoulos <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, November 25, 2020 - 12:25:30 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, January 19, 2021 - 11:10:05 AM

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Ioannis Georgikopoulos. The Southeastern Aegean and the World: Premodern Roots of a Postmodern Cultural and Economic Coastal Network. In Georgitsoyanni, E., Gavra, E. (eds), Proceedings International Conference: Port cities and maritime routes in Eastern Mediterranean and Black Sea 18th-21st centuries, Thessaloniki: University of Macedonia Press, p. 1097-1106., 2020. ⟨hal-02992755⟩

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