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Modern revolutions and the idea of Europe



Modern revolutions and the idea of Europe

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9–11 September 2021


Revolutions and rebellions have been a constant feature of the history of the modern age. Examples abound from the “Glorious” and the “Industrial” to the French and American revolutions; from the Haitian to the Greek Revolution and the Revolutions of 1848; from the Russian Revolution to the Mexican, the Chinese and the Iranian Revolution; from the anti-colonial uprisings of the twentieth century to the “velvet”, “rose” and “orange” revolutions of the twenty-first century. As moments of rupture and radical change, revolutions accelerate historical time, challenge existing hierarchies and mark the advent of new social, political and cultural formations and constellations; they unite and divide. Revolutions also constitute critical processes for the reconfiguration of conceptions of Europe. Ideas about Europe can be discovered at the intersection of political discourses, structures of power, geopolitical perspectives and identity projects. The history of modern revolutions offers a prime opportunity to re-examine and rethink European historical realities and recover the making of ideas about Europe in the modern age; revolutions have been central to discussions about Europe’s pasts and futures, and have shaped the continent’s political and cultural heritage.
The conference focuses on modern revolutions as social, political, cultural and intellectual events, and as transformative processes. It turns a critical eye on the conceptualisation of the term “revolution”. It investigates the evolving ideas, perceptions and images about Europe in the context of revolutionary politics. It explores how modern revolutions have affected discourses about Europe.
The conference organisers invite papers that shed new light on visions and ideas of Europe addressing, but not limited to, the following topics:
• Revolutionary ideas, connections and networks across national, imperial and international borders
• The concept of “revolution”, “rebellion” and its uses
• Circulation, transfer and appropriation of revolutionary projects and the dynamics of socio-political change in Europe, and beyond
• The history of European revolutionary and counter-revolutionary thought in a transnational and global perspective
• Revolutionary languages and rhetoric, and visions of Europe
• Revolutionaries, intellectuals, exiles, men and women at the crossroads of European and non-European Revolutions
• Revolutions and the making of European and International Orders
• Revolutions as a core feature of European identity
• Revolutions and European states of emergency
• Anticolonial and postcolonial thought, revolutionary visions and perceptions of Europe from across the globe
The themes listed above are examples and by no means limited to the exclusion of others.
On the occasion of the bicentenary of the Greek Revolution of 1821, the conference will also host a special roundtable on the Greek Revolution and the Idea of Europe.

(Edited description from the organiser’s website)

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