[ilds] post-Ottoman theory

Richard Pine richardpin at eircom.net
Sun Jul 8 08:45:16 PDT 2007

Marc, I've glanced at this article, and as far as I can see it doesnt 
mention Corfu as being under Ottoman influence. If it does, then the author 
is completely wrong.
The whole point about the Ionian islands is that culturally they were quite 
disticnt from most of mainland and Aegean 'Greece', which ceased to exist 
politically from 1453 until 1830-32. Corfu, like the other Ionian islands, 
was under Ventian rule for 400 years until 1797 when Napoleon took Venice. 
The 'United States of the Ionian Islands', also known as the Heptanese or 
Septinsular Republic, existed under (mainly) British 'protection' (1815-64), 
thus pre-existing the modern state of Greece.
Hence the continuing sense of Corfiot superiority to Greece: everywhere 
else, Turkish culture and society permeated Greek ways of life. In the 
Ionian islands the Italian culture and language permeated society. The first 
'Greek' artists - composers, poets, playwrights - were educated at the 
universities of Padua and Genoa and so were the aristocrats and 
intellectuals, so that when the call for Greek independence from Turkish 
rule came in 1820, it was the Ionian islands which were able to supply the 
key players, including the Corfiot John Capodistrias who had been the Tsar's 
foreign minister and who became (for a short time, before his assassination) 
the first President of modern Greece.
The major event in modern times was the successful repulsion by the 
Venetians and Corfiots of the Turkish naval siege of Corfu in 1716, under 
the leadership of Austrian general Schulenberg, who then built the massive 
fortifications on the land side of Corfu town (which was an Italianate city 
when Athens was still a village) to ensure that the Turks couldnt invade on 
the west coast and march inland to the backside of Corfu. Some of those 
walls are still to be seen today, as of course are the original medieval 
fortress and the 'New Fortress' dating from the 16th century.
So where does Mr Soward detect 'Ottoman influence' where THERE WAS NONE 
--- Original Message ----- 
From: "Marc Piel" <marcpiel at interdesign.fr>
To: <ilds at lists.uvic.ca>
Sent: Sunday, July 08, 2007 1:24 PM
Subject: Re: [ilds] post-Ottoman theory

> If you read this text:
> http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/lecture6.html
> You will see that Corfu was indeed under Ottoman
> influence!
> Marc
> Michael Haag wrote:
>> I do not know whether postcolonial theory as taught in American
>> universities keeps the cleaning ladies off the streets, but some
>> historical knowledge of the Ottoman Empire, whose western extremity was
>> Serbia and whose eastern extremity was Iraq, goes a long way towards
>> understanding why those two places continue to be serious problems in
>> our day. Durrell of course lived in Belgrade, also in Cyprus, another
>> very recent object of Ottoman imperialism, and before that in Egypt,
>> which likewise had been (technically until 1914) part of the Ottoman
>> Empire. In fact from 1935 when he went to Greece until 1956 when he went
>> to France, the only places he lived that had not been part of the
>> Ottoman Empire were Corfu and Argentina.
>> :Michael
>> On Sunday, July 8, 2007, at 01:46 am, william godshalk wrote:
>>     Perhaps theory is a way of keeping us from close analysis of what is
>>     actually happening. Is theory a way of intellectualizing the fact
>>     that Iraq is a killing ground, a slaughter house? Theory is a way of
>>     keeping a segment of the society off the streets and away from
>>     revolution.
>>     Bill
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> _______________________________________________
>> ILDS mailing list
>> ILDS at lists.uvic.ca
>> https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds
> _______________________________________________
> ILDS mailing list
> ILDS at lists.uvic.ca
> https://lists.uvic.ca/mailman/listinfo/ilds

More information about the ILDS mailing list