The Long History of Identity, Ethnicity and Nationhood
The main purpose of our research network is twofold. First and foremost, we aim at rethinking the existing theoretical paradigms of ethnicity and nationalism studies in general, as well as those of pre-modern collective identities in particular. Second, our goal is to shift the debate beyond its predominantly Eurocentric focus: integrating various non-European themes and materials into the discussion is essential to moving beyond the stalled debate between modernists and ‘pre-modernists’. Thus our interlinked goals are to combine conceptual discussions with an attention to new and diverse material, thereby allowing the development of new ways of thinking about the long history of identity, ethnicity and nationhood. This can only be achieved successfully through a genuinely interdisciplinary approach. Our research network brings together scholars of History, Oriental Studies, Linguistics, Classics, Philosophy, Religion, Archaeology, and Visual Culture. Their expertise covers a wide range of topics both chronologically (from Antiquity to the early modern period) and geographically (Western Europe, Scandinavia, the Mediterranean, Byzantium, Caucasia, North Africa, the Volga region, Iran and Kurdistan, and South Asia).