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We believe that the chronopolitical perspective could also reveal that the Mediterranean was not only a spatial but a spatio-temporal construction. Geopolitics was a biological concept of geography viewing the state as an organism, tending to expand in order to offer living space Lebensraum, spazio vitale for the nation resp. Geopolitical thinking emerged around during the age of high imperialism. In the interwar period it became predominant among geographers within the academic sphere. They conceived the Mediterranean Sea as a bridge that would enable Europe to expand towards the south and to merge with Africa in order to persist in the struggle for global hegemony against America and Asia.

So far, these geopolitical concepts e. The workshop will put them into a comparative and transnational perspective, aiming to analyze their similarities and differences, dependencies and connections and to ask what they contributed to our idea and understanding of Mediterranean.

Maier, The Politics of Time, p. In Section I we would like to bring forward the concepts of biopolitics, chronopolitics and geopolitics in greater detail and discuss in how far they are useful for grasping both the visions of the Mediterranean as well as the characteristic features of the Mediterranean empires of the interwar period and the imperial practices on the ground.

We see this workshop as a kind of test balloon for these concepts and we invite the speakers of the following sections to integrate one or more of these notions into their papers. Section II focusses on islands. In imperial contexts — and especially in thalassocracies — islands have always been highly contested and much sought-after spaces, as they served not only as outposts of empire but also as indispensable logistic nodes. We are interested in the changes that this period of imperial transition entailed and how the imperial subjects coped with these transformations.

What role did islands in general or specific islands play in the geopolitical vision that the empires propagated? Section III concentrates on mutual perceptions of the Mediterranean empires.


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We are interested in the transfer of imperial know-how and in imperial brokers: Were Italian consuls outposts of a colonizing Fascist regime or were they themselves colonized by more powerful players? To which extent did imperial agents observe each other in order to initiate inter- imperial transfers of ideas and practices? How did fascist imperialists learn from liberal imperial imperialists and vice versa?

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How was fascist imperialism in the Mediterranean perceived by other colonizing activists like the Zionists in Palestine? Section IV highlights the ambivalent role of Christian missionaries. Yet, since religious and secular civilizing missions were not always consistent, Christian missionaries also criticized mistakes of colonial administrators and excesses of colonial violence.

This section will analyze how the latter contributed to and distanced themselves from the imperial bio-, chrono- and geopolitical practices of the interwar period.

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Not only has he written about British politicians and Britain's role in the world, he has also delved deep into at least one sub-regional area, Cyprus and the Hellenes, for many years now. This mix of the general with the particular is evident in his writing, which is lucid and runs on in style and short on rhetoric.

He understands what our supervisor at Oxford, the late Freddie Madden, used to call 'negative value', a concern which Robinson and Gallagher also bring out in Africa and the Victorians; he also recognizes the implications of Robinson's theory of collaboration. Negative value meant taking Gibraltar rather than let Spain keep it; holding on to Malta for fear that the French or the Italians would occupy it; varying and volatile carrot-and-stick approaches - sometimes more stick than carrot - in Egypt, Cyprus and Palestine.

There are inter-linking moods and movements across the region or parts of it in the Napoleonic era; imperialism, free trade and the Pax Britannica; ententes and detentes; powersharing and conflicts of interest, cultural conflicts as well. There are two 20th century world wars wherein Britain and France fight on the same side against the Kaiser and Hitler and their allies to the east.

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Other overlapping or conflicting interests and attitudes occur in Graeco-Turkish or Arab-Jewish relations especially after the first world war. In both of these inflamed situations, Holland shows, Britain had a hand. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :.


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Blue-Water Empire: The British in the Mediterranean Since 1800

Robert Holland traces the remarkable experience of British mastery in the Mediterranean from the Battle of the Nile to El Alamein and the end of empire, exploring the unique and often explosive relationships that shaped the region's modern history. For nearly two hundred years the Mediterranean lay at the heart of British power overseas - what Winston Churchill called 'Brit Robert Holland traces the remarkable experience of British mastery in the Mediterranean from the Battle of the Nile to El Alamein and the end of empire, exploring the unique and often explosive relationships that shaped the region's modern history.

For nearly two hundred years the Mediterranean lay at the heart of British power overseas - what Winston Churchill called 'Britain's first battlefield'. Here many thousands of Britons spent their lives, their graves now scattered from Gibraltar to Corfu, from Malta to Cyprus. British mastery of the seaways and surrounding shores, symbolized by the possession of fortress colonies, attracted enemies and rivals but became part of the enduring fabric of many Mediterranean societies.

Robert Holland's sweeping new book tells the story of an extraordinary experience combining the military imposition of British rule with a constant enthusiasm for Mediterranean life enduring today, and which has left many legacies in administration, culture, language, law and architecture. Blue-Water Empire evokes the conflicts and frequent disillusionment between the British and local societies caught up in often dramatic events, but also their mutual intimacy, hopefulness and resilience under pressure. Above all, it charts the British experience of the Mediterranean, and the Mediterranean experience of the British, in the age of empire.

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