Black Sea as Literary and Cultural Space: State of the Art and Prospects
Athens Journal of Mediterranean Studies
It is argued that the notion of "literary space", as developed from diverse perspectives by scholars within the disciplinary contexts of cultural geography and literary studies, is a convenient tool to evoke interdisciplinary research that has its focal area about literary studies; and hence potentially contributing to overcome a state of the art which perpetuates the position of studies on the Black Sea literatures and cultures at the margin of humanities (or: on the verge of not being
... f not being constituted as a subject in humanities). Attempting a critical overview, I discern two main shortcomings of studies on the Black Sea region/area: (i) a tendency to "naturalise" and dehumanise their subject, which correlates with specific interdisciplinary constellation; (ii) and a multilayered commitment to imperial agendas, some exogenous to the geographic region and some not. Tracing diverse theoretic perspectives in adopting the concept of "literary space" (as a driver of imagination, as a field of interaction, and as an ambient of non-occurring events), and minding the mentioned shortcomings, I come to a set of prospective research issues which, as I believe, can bring a scholarly field to birth.