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Franks, Northmen, and Slavs
Identities and State Formation in Early Medieval Europe

I. H. Garipzanov, P. Geary, P. Urbanczyk (eds.)
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X+267 p., 10 b/w ill., 25 b/w line art, 156 x 234 mm, 2008
ISBN: 978-2-503-52615-7
Languages: English
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Online content: http://dx.doi.org/10.1484/M.CURSOR-EB.6.09070802050003050206010507

In recent decades, historians attempting to understand the transition from the world of late antiquity with its unitary imperial system to the medieval Europe of separate kingdoms have become increasingly concerned with the role of early medieval gentes, or peoples, in the end of the former and the constitution of the latter.

Eleven specialists examine here the role of ethnic identity in the formation of medieval polities on the periphery of the Frankish world in the eighth through eleventh centuries. In particular, they explore the intertwined issues of ethnic identity and state formation in Scandinavia and in the western and southern Slavic regions, areas in which the new approaches to the history of ethnicity have but little penetrated traditional scholarship. They ask to what extent common identities assisted in the consolidation and creation of early medieval kingdoms and to what extent the formation of these kingdoms created a discourse of common identity as a means to centralization and control. The authors contend that the developments in Scandinavia and in Slavic areas cannot be understood except in dynamic relationship with the process of state formation and group identity within the Frankish kingdoms. This powerful, expansionist society not only interacted and influenced the development of state structures on its northern and eastern borders, but it also provided models of discourse about the relationship between centralizing power and group solidarity. Not that these discourses were simply adopted by the Franks’ neighbours, but rather they became part of the range of possible options selectively adapted to local circumstances.

 

 

Table of Contents

Introduction: Gentes, Gentile Identity, and State Formation in Early Medieval Europe

ILDAR H. GARIPZANOV, PATRICK J. GEARY, AND PRZEMYSŁAW URBAŃCZYK

Part One. Franks: Identities in the Migration and Carolingian Periods

1. Ethnicity, Group Identity, and Social Status in the Migration Period

PETER J. HEATHER

2. Omnes Franci: Identifications and Identities of the Early Medieval Franks

HELMUT REIMITZ

3. Frankish Identity in Charlemagne’s Empire

JANET L. NELSON

Part Two. Northmen: Identities and State Formation in Scandinavia

4. People and land in Early Scandinavia

STEFAN BRINK

5. Frontier Identities: Carolingian Frontier and the gens Danorum

ILDAR H. GARIPZANOV

6. Division and Unity in Medieval Norway

SVERRE BAGGE

Part Three. Slavs: Identities and State Formation in the Slavic World

7. The Primary Chronicle’s ‘Ethnography’ Revisited: Slavs and Varangians in the Middle Dnieper Region and the Origin of the Rus’ State

OLEKSIY P. TOLOCHKO

8. Christianity and Paganism as Elements of Gentile Identities to the East of the Elbe and Saale Rivers

CHRISTIAN LÜBKE

9. Slavic and Christian Identities during the Transition to Polish Statehood

PRZEMYSŁAW URBAŃCZYK

10. Identities in Early Medieval Dalmatia (Seventh–Eleventh Centuries)

NEVEN BUDAK

11. Slovenian Gentile Identity: From Samo to the Fürstenstein

PATRICK J. GEARY

Index

Interest Classification:
Medieval & Renaissance History (c.400-1500)
Medieval European history (400-1500) : auxiliary sciences
Demography & settlement studies
Medieval European history (400-1500) : local & regional history
France
Medieval History (400-1500) : subperiods
Merovingian & Carolingian period

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