On Thursday, June 20th, 2024 at 12:00 PM (CET), we are hosting the CAS SEE Seminar with Edon Qesari on “Nationalism and historiography. The Albanian case” in conversation with the RECAS  Fellow Kriton Kuci.

Hana Ćurak

Edon Qesari

Edon Qesari is a scholar of social and cultural history based in Tirana, Albania. He currently works as a researcher at the Albanian Institute of History. His interests include state-led industrialization and modernization efforts in 20th-century Albania, as well as cross-cultural and human relations in the Adriatic Sea region during the interwar period. He is particularly keen on using a microhistorical approach in his research while also developing a critical perspective towards traditional historical writing.

About the Seminar

The grand narrative of recent Albanian historiography, and even that of earlier periods, follows a storyline that reaches deep into the past, embodying features of continuity and establishing a predominantly essentialist view regarding the concept of the nation. From the primitive Illyrian tribes through medieval agrarian principalities to the modern nation-state, Albanian historiography has primarily focused on identifying the unchangeable essence amid various distinct events. This vision of history as a continuous thread aligns seamlessly with major developments in the official historiographies of contemporary Eastern and Southeastern Europe. In the realm of everyday politics, this interpretation of the past acts as a prerequisite for entering the political arena. Once accepted, it allows the subject to attain a status of normalcy. In the following lecture, Edon Qesari will examine the relationship between historical research and nationalist affirmation within what is considered the official version of Albania’s past. To achieve this, Qesari will introduce methodological solutions that address political interferences and promote a critical approach to historical studies. These solutions aim to provide a remedy for the inherent biases in the historiographical narrative, fostering a more nuanced and comprehensive understanding of Albania’s history.

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Fellowships are supported by OSF Western Balkans, ERSTE Foundation and Rockefeller Brothers Fund.

UNIRI The Moise Palace: Cres Island

An education center of the University of Rijeka. A five-hundred-year-old patrician townhouse and the largest Renaissance palace on the Croatian islands. A venue and forum for various scientific and research activities, it welcomes visiting academics, students and scholars.