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Graduate Workshop

January 13th-15th 2021

In a nutshell. For those who embark the academic career, the necessity of applying for positions by submitting research projects increases. We believe that discussing projects in a collective network of tenured and non-tenured scholars from different academic environments can help improving one’s projects and make them more meaningful in an international context. This workshop aims at selecting a number of research proposals and have them peer-reviewed among participants and evaluated by an international team of senior scholars, in order to assess their strengths, their weaknesses and their potential.

Hadrian's wall - Landscape

The borders within, the borders without.

Social, historical, linguistic and geographic frontiers

in the ancient and medieval Mediterranean basin. Permeability and connectivity


The ancient Mediterranean is a fragmented system characterized by a high degree of connectivity. The formation, consolidation, decline and disruption of communications among regions, microecologies, individuals, peoples and polities is a longue durée phenomenon; against this background borders of cultural, political, social or economic nature come into being. The peculiar, dichotomic nature of the Mediterranean lies in the co-existence of networks and barriers. There are borders and frontiers within the Mediterranean and without the Mediterranean. The boundaries thus marked, however, do not hinder movements and connections: they influence communication and its historical manifestations by imposing specific ‘rules of the game’.

We are interested in discussing PhD and Post-Doc projects of students eager to investigate intercultural exchanges (connection, hybridization, conflict) within the Mediterranean and between the Mediterranean and other geographic macro-areas in Asia, Africa and Europe, including processes of construction and consolidation of collective identities as well as borders of cultural, linguistic, geographical or other nature. At the same time we welcome projects about the formation and transformation of spaces of interconnection and environmental frontiers commercial networks, interaction of ecological and economic systems.

Study proposals may also address intersection of identities, alterities and differences within the social structures, and the study of socio-economic and power inequalities.

The period discussed is ca. 800 BCE – 800 CE, but draft projects could also deal with other historical periods and settings, which relate to the ancient world through reception/heritage/contrast of models or other kind of connection. A significant comparative approach between different historical contexts of the ancient world and critical periodization is potentially relevant as well.