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Fourth International Sevgi Gönül Byzantine Studies Symposium

Byzantine Identity and the Other in Geographical and Ethnic Imagination

June 23, 2016 – June 25, 2016
The symposium is open to the public and free, but registration is required. Please click here to register.

ANAMED Research Center for Anatolian Civilizations, İstiklal Caddesi No. 181, Merkez Han, Beyoğlu, İstanbul


The Fourth International Sevgi Gönül Byzantine Studies Symposium aims to explore the complex relationship between geography, ethnicity and other factors contributing to the formation of the other in written, artistic and material evidence. The participants will also examine how Byzantines talked about themselves while talking about the others, for Byzantine representation of the cultures outside the Byzantine world had a particular geographical and ethnic aspect that contributed not only to the perception of the non-Byzantine, but also to the construction of the Byzantine self-image.

Byzantine portrayal of the cultures beyond the borders of the Empire was informed by geographic and ethnic elements including climate, flora, language and a certain way of life, which in turn entered into a complex relationship with the history, religious traditions and political state of these cultures as perceived by Byzantines. Examination of the Byzantine encounter with the geographically and ethnically other – from the fairly familiar to the exotic, and from the internal other to the external one – provides clues on how Byzantines related to their own environment spatially and how they differentiated themselves from their neighbors.

The symposium will feature nine sessions in which 25 papers will be presented by senior researchers. Please click here for a preliminary programme. Simultaneous English-Turkish translation will be provided.


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