Byzantium's Apt Inheritors: Serbian Historiography, Nation-Building and Imperial Imagination, 1882-1941
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Between the second half of the nineteenth and middle of the twentieth century, Serbian national historiography developed a complex understanding of relationships between medieval Serbia and the Byzantine Empire. On the one hand, Serbia was seen as a cultural offspring of Byzantium and its most appropriate successor; on the other, historians dissociated the nation from Byzantium, elaborating on its cultural authenticity. Consequently, the position of Byzantium became rather ambivalent, being simultaneously seen as a 'national legacy' and the nation's political adversary and cultural obstacle. This article shows that the complex historiographical elaboration of Serbian-Byzantine relationships was part of a wider ideological structure which was crucial for justifying the nation's cultural exceptionalism, territorial expansionism and imperial ambitions.
Source:Slavonic and East European Review, 2016, 94, 1, 57-
- Modern Humanities Research Association