[MGSA-L] Princeton Hellenic Studies Lecture: December 12, 2016

Dimitri H. Gondicas gondicas at Princeton.EDU
Mon Dec 5 10:58:03 PST 2016


Seeger Center for Hellenic Studies


Religion in Diaspora:
The Greek Experience of Catholic Power in Eighteenth-Century Italy

Angela Falcetta

falcetta at princeton.edu<mailto:falcetta at princeton.edu>

Hannah Seeger Davis Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Hellenic Studies

Respondent: Molly Greene, History and Hellenic Studies

Studies on early Modern Greek diaspora have largely emphasized the importance of communitarian ties, as well as of the networks connecting the members of the group to each other and to their homelands. In most of this literature the concepts of "diaspora" and "community" have been applied to describe a sense of connectedness occurring from stable and religion-based bonds. The present paper goes beyond this approach to consider Orthodox mobility across the Catholic Mediterranean as a phenomenon involving the creation of multiple relations and entangled spaces of belonging. Focusing on the long eighteenth century, this lecture illustrates how the Roman Congregation of Propaganda Fide became a central node in a Catholic "web of affiliation" in which Orthodox-Christians took part to varying degrees. It also demonstrates how this web served Rome's ambition to reach out to Greek diaspora communities, particularly in the Kingdom of Naples. Against this background, the group-building in diaspora will be examined as a process depending more on shifting power and social relations than on stable religious identities. Based on the Vatican sources and a wide range of other records drawn from several state and ecclesiastical archives located in southern Italy, this lecture does not aim to offer a Catholic counter-history of the Greek diaspora. Rather, by using the Greek experience of Catholic power as a springboard, it puts into question the primary role of religion in shaping diasporic solidarities implied by conventional notions of confessional minority, community and diaspora.

Angela Falcetta earned her doctoral degree from the University of Padua (Department of Historical and Geographic Sciences and the Ancient World) in 2014. As a visiting Ph.D. student, she participated in the Erasmus Program at the University of Oxford during the spring of 2012. She was Research Fellow at the University of Padua (2014-2016) and formerly she was awarded research grants from the Luigi Einaudi Foundation (Turin, 2009-2010) and the University of Sassari (2014). She is the author of a book (in Italian) entitled "Orthodox-Christians in the Catholic Mediterranean: Boundaries, Networks, Communities in the Kingdom of Naples, 1700-1821" (Viella, Rome 2016) and of peer-reviewed articles on different issues related to the Greek diaspora.

Monday, December 12, 2016
6:00 p.m.

Scheide Caldwell House, Room 103

Supported by The Christos G. and Rhoda Papaioannou Modern Greek Studies Fund
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