Events

Past Event

PANEL: The Mediterranean by Law. Europe and the Maghreb, 16th-19th Centuries

March 29, 2018
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
The Heyman Center, 2nd floor, Common Room

Respondents: Lauren Benton (Vanderbilt University) and Simona Cerutti (EHESS-Italian Academy, Columbia University)

Moderators: Pier Mattia Tommasino (Columbia University) and Konstantina Zanou (Columbia University)

Guillaume Calafat (Paris 1, La Sorbonne, IAS, Princeton)
Trials and Jurisdictional Pluralism in the Western Mediterranean (1590-1630). Corsicans at Courts between Ottoman North Africa and Southern Europe

This paper devotes particular attention to Corsican converts to Islam during the Early Modern period: the history of trans-regional and trans-religious families can offer precious information on the ways converts could maintain familial and affective links and relationships with their homeland. To this end, it looks to articulate case studies and to employ micro-analytical techniques of historical investigation around a set of questions related to global history, such as “cross-cultural trade” and commercial exchanges across religious, political, and legal boundaries. Through close study of lawsuits in which Corsican traders and sailors were involved in Algiers, Tunis, Livorno, Marseilles, Genoa and Venice, this presentation will follow commercial and maritime disputes from one tribunal to another in several Mediterranean port cities, giving also information on commercial courts in the Early Modern Mediterranean.

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Jessica Marglin (University of Southern California)
The Extraterritorial Century: Rethinking Nationality and Religion in the Mediterranean, 1815-1915

Nationality has, unsurprisingly, mainly been treated as a national concern, and the histories of nationality largely confine themselves to a single state at a time. More recently, historians have explored nationality in a modern Mediterranean framework, thus breaking the boundaries of the nation-state. Nonetheless, such approaches are dominated by European colonialism; they traverse cultural boundaries, but not political ones. This paper seeks to locate the practice of nationality in the space between “Occident” and “Orient”—and more specifically, in the histories of individuals who were not entirely of one category or the other. I argue that the Mediterranean’s various regimes of national belonging—including, but not limited to, diplomatic protection, colonial subjecthood, nationality, and citizenship—were all essential to the lived experience of nationality, not only in the Middle East but in Europe as well. These competing and often overlapping modes of belonging were not confined to the “Orient”: rather the nature of nationality in Europe was shaped by its manifestations on the southern shores of the Mediterranean, and vice versa.

* Event co-sponsored by Columbia Alliance & Columbia Global Centers