Claire Norton
New Academia Publishing, 2007
220 Pages, 25 Illustrations
ISBN 978-0-9787713-1-7 Paperback

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About the Author

Claire Norton is a lecturer in Islamic history at St. Mary’s College, University of Surrey. She has published articles on Ottoman history in a number of edited collections and journals. Her research interests include Ottoman literacy practices, identity formation, Christian-Muslim interactions, the rhetoric of conflict and representations of war, and questions concerning the epistemological status of history.

About the book

The essays in this collection explore both how the employment of nation-state dominated discourses have caused re-imagination of the past, and how the past has been re-constructed to accord with nationalist agendas. Although other works have considered in general terms how nations are imagined, this collection takes a different stance and specifically focuses on how ‘the past’ is used in such imaginations.

This collection was conceived in an interdisciplinary spirit, drawing insights from art history, intellectual history, literature, archaeology, heritage studies, political science, and film studies. The authors combine a sophisticated theoretical approach with illuminative case studies from all across the globe, including the Balkans, South Africa, Rwanda, Yemen, Italy, Turkey, Greece, and Uzbekistan.


“An especially valuable feature of this book is that the theme is explored through a variety of representations of the past: museums, monuments, art history, archaeology, dance, religion, historical narrative, and more.”
– John Breuilly, London School of Economics

“The volume provides a general introduction to a field in which popular interest has been burgeoning in recent years.”
– Rhoads Murphey, The University of Birmingham

“Constructions of national identities and the ways in which national groups re-imagine their pasts are topics of current interest in a number of academic disciplines.”
– Mark Donnelly, St. Mary’s College, University of Surrey