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"“Reconstructing Imaginary and Real Byzantium: Historical and Cultural Legacy that Divide and Integrate Europe"

CAS 14/04/2010

Euro-BaIkan Institute for Social and Humanities Research, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia is announcing

Summer School "Reconstructing Imaginary and Real Byzantium: Historical and Cultural Legacy that Divide and Integrate Europe"

to be held 16th-29th August, Ohrid, Macedonia.

The Summer School will explore the complex and fascinating phenomenon that is the Byzantium and its legacy, striving to go beyond the established approach in the study of Byzantine history and culture. The objective of the Summer School is to distance from the stereotyped application of “Byzantinism” and to introduce the Real instead of Imaginary Byzantium. Apart from the historical analysis of the origins of Byzantium and its development as a separate political and cultural entity that dominated Eastern Mediterranean for more than a millennium, the various questions concerning the interpretation/misinterpretation of the Byzantine legacy in the conceptualization of European civilization will be discussed.

The Summer School will explore the Byzantine studies in the Western Europe and “put them in a dialogue” with those taking place in Southeastern Europe. Its main goal is to stimulate the critical thinking of the understanding of Byzantium and its heritage not as a factor of the East-West division, but as an integrative civilizational bridge between the Balkans/Southeast Europe and Western Europe.

The Summer School is integral part of Ohrid Summer University (OSU) which is
an academic program for young faculty, PhD candidates, postgraduates, researchers and professionals, which offers intensive, problem oriented and research based courses from the domain of social sciences and humanities. OSU was founded in 1998 and has functioned continuously since then, as one of the core programs of the “Euro-Balkan” Institute, involving a significant number of both junior and senior members of academic communities from various countries. To date “Euro-Balkan” Institute, trough OSU program, has organized more than 30 summer schools from various areas with over 500 participants, involving more than 100 proffessors. During the 11 years-long period of its existence, OSU has engaged itself in: adequate and effective training of the academic staff, demonstration of successful linkage of state-of-the-art scholarship and effective and innovative teaching, promotion of academic excellence and ability to facilitate creation and sustenance of active networks of academics, as well as collaborative advancement of learning in certain disciplines within the international context.

Summer School Programme Concept:

Two two-week course will be organized in master lectures, discussion sessions and workshops, held by the renown scholars in Byzantine Studies from Great Britain and Republic of Macedonia.

First week:
* Course: “Deconstructing the Real Byzantium: UnderstandING the Balkans“
* Duration: five days
* Format: a) Interactive lectures, followed by discussion sessions. The focus of the lectures and discussions will be the exploration and identification of the Real Byzantium and how to distinguish it from the “imaginary” or “imposed” Byzantine legacy of the Balkans. Another component of the lectures and discussions that will take place will be to comparatively explore how Byzantium influenced the identity and culture in the medieval Balkans; b) Afternoon workshops aiming at exploring various questions related to the history of Byzantium and the Medieval Balkans.

Second week:
* Course: “Byzantium and the West: Eastern versus the European CULTURAL
* Duration: five days
* Format: a) Interactive lectures, followed by discussion sessions. The spotlight of
the lectures and discussions will be the exploration of the question when
the actual separation between Byzantium and the West occurred, and how the
religious and cultural division influenced the Balkan region. Another
component of the lectures and discussions that will take place will be
addressing the ideology in Byzantium and how it was perceived in the Balkans
and the West; b) Afternoon workshops aiming at exploring various issues related to
Byzantine ideology, religion and culture.

The Programme consists of several features:

- The academic programme of the Summer School, will be supplemented by other educational activities, such are the intensive course in Old Slavonic language and the workshop in paper production, offered for all the participants of Ohrid Summer University (covered by the participation fee).

- In regard to the high standards established by the Euro-Balkan Institute and due to its membership in the Erasmus Charter, the Summer School will grant theparticipants appropriate certificate with 10 credits (ECTS), applicable in the master studies of participant’s home universities.

- Memorable social events on the campus and at the Ohrid Lake.

- Tours of the numerous medieval churches, ancient and medieval monuments in the UNESCO protected city of Ohrid, located at the shore of the unforgettably beautiful Ohrid Lake (covered by the participation fee).

Eligibility and fee:

- Participant must be MA or PhD students interested in exploring the issues of Byzantine Studies (not older than 36 years of age)

- Participant must be a national of one of the countries from Southeastern Europe in order for her/his accommodation costs to be fully covered by the Organizer. The total participation fee will be 100 euro.

- Participants from other countries are also eligible to participate, but ineligible for the financial support provided by the organizers. These applicants, will have to cover participation fee of 100 euro and accommodation costs.

Number of participants: 20

Working language of the Summer School will be English.

Please note that the Second Announcement with the detailed Programme of the
Summer School will follow on 1st of May 2010.

Deadline for submitting the application: June 15th 2010.
Deadline for announcing the results of the selection process: July 1st 2010.

Contact person:
Prof. Dr Mitko B. Panov,
Director of the Summer School
Euro-Balkan Institute
Blvd. Partizanski Odredi 63, 1000, Skopje, Republic of Macedonia
Tel/Fax. + 389 2 30 75 570

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