Byzantium & Friends

33. The study of ethnic identities in Byzantium and beyond (Listener Questions II), with Brian Swain

September 24, 2020

This conversation with Brian Swain (Kennesaw State University) takes on listener questions about Byzantine identities. We start with the history of scholarly discussions of identity, especially ethnicity, comparing the study of barbarian (i.e., Germanic) ethnic groups with those in the Byzantine empire. How do groups change their identities? How are new identities born and old ones lost? How did the ancient Greeks become Romans and when did that become an ethnic identity? Where does genealogy and biology fit into all this? What happened to the Romans of the west? What did the Byzantines call their state and language? What does modern Romania have to do with Byzantine Romanía? And more!

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