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Title: Aspects of identity & nationhood : commemorating, representing & replicating the Greek maritime past
Author: Stefanou, Eleni
ISNI:       0000 0001 3479 4556
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis objective is to examine the ideological parameters which govern the Greek maritime heritage representations in connection to the underpinning of narratives about modern Greek national identity. To achieve that, this thesis critically investigates selected Greek maritime museum displays, naval commemorative ceremonies, one naval-battle re-enactment, and ancient ship reconstructions. Its theoretical framework concerns the interaction of nationalism with the uses of the material past for the reproduction of national imagination: the main parameters developed within this framework regard the production of national maritime narratives by private agents, the role of Orthodox religion in maritime heritage representations, and the interaction of the local and the national within Greek maritime communities. This thesis answers the following questions: a) Why are the material expressions of the maritime past important for national ideology? b) What are the historical points of reference that are materially expressed in order to establish maritime discourses as powerful features of the Greek national rhetoric? c) What are the processes through which maritime identity has contributed to the formation of a collective Greek identity as it evolves out of the represented maritime material culture? The results reveal that Greek maritime heritage representations demonstrate the potential of different social groups to shape national discourses, that private agents such as shipowners and retired naval officers play a central role in the production of national narratives, and that the maritime past is utterly connected to contemporary Greek national politics. This work fills the existing gap in the Greek scholarship on the maritime material past, which is largely underdeveloped outside an ethnocentric agenda. It also places the discussion about the Greek maritime past within a broader international framework: through comparative analyses it complements the few critical international scholarly studies about maritime heritage and national identity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available