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The real-and-imagined spaces of philhellenic travel

Stock, Paul (2013) The real-and-imagined spaces of philhellenic travel. European Review of History, 20 (4). pp. 523-537. ISSN 1350-7486

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Identification Number: 10.1080/13507486.2013.770825


This article focuses on philhellenic travellers' perceptions and experiences of Greece in the early nineteenth century, especially during the War of Independence in the 1820s. The central argument is that philhellenes - that is to say, supporters of Greek independence from the Ottoman Empire - understand Greece as a 'real-and-imagined' space. Greece is an 'imagined' location in the sense that philhellenic conception of it is shaped by certain rhetorical assumptions and priorities. But, evidently, it is also a 'real' space, not simply in the obvious sense that the landscape has a tangible existence, but also in that those rhetorical constructions have concrete consequences and expressions. These expressions are especially significant because philhellenic travellers conceive the region as both a literal and conceptual borderland on the edges of Europe. They consider Greece fundamental to European history, culture and self-definition, but because it is ruled by the Ottoman Empire, it is also an unfamiliar space at the margins of Europe. In other words, Greece is both within and outside European space, and its liminal position represents wider uncertainties about the conception of Europe in the early nineteenth century.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: International History
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DF Greece
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2013 07:25
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2024 19:00

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