ON THE THEME OF
ENGLISH-SPEAKING NATIONS AND THE MEDITERRANEAN *
THE MAGHREB REVIEW
Mansfield College, Oxford
11-12 July 2005
(Workshop 13 July See below)
The proceedings were published in
Vol. 31, Nos 1-2, 2006
£35 Post free
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The Maghreb Review hosted a conference on the theme
English-speaking nations and the Mediterranean at Mansfield College,
Oxford, on 11-12 July 2005. The Editors invited proposals for papers
that fit into the following general themes:
- Foreign policy and military concerns of English-speaking nations
in the Mediterranean region from the sixteenth century to the present.
- Cultural relations between English speaking nations and societies
in the eastern and southern Mediterranean, including their role in
institutions of higher education; exchange programmes; the portrayal
of and comment on Mediterranean societies by English speakers and
of English speaking nations by those of Mediterranean origin
in literature, film, the media, art.
- Economic relations between English-speaking nations and eastern
and southern Mediterranean countries from the sixteenth century to
- Emigration and refuge-seeking by people from southern and eastern
Mediterranean countries into the English speaking-nations legal
aspects; the experience of emigrant communities and individuals in
the host countries and their relations with their home society.
- The role of NGOs and media based in English-speaking nations.
- Comparative environmental study, particularly comparing arid and
semi-arid areas of the American West with North Africa or the Middle
The following papers were presented at the conference:
PROFESSOR CLEMENT DODD, UNIVERSITY OF LONDON:
Difficulties of Turkey in the Eastern Mediterranean: Britain, the United
States and Cyprus
ABSTRACT: Britain occupied Cyprus in 1878 with the agreement
of the Ottoman Government in order to provide a British base to counter
any further Russian aggression. However, history takes unexpected turns.
This occupation, and later annexation, of Cyprus by Britain began at
first to create problems for Britain not with Russia, but with Greece,
with whom at the time the Greek Cypriots fervently wished to be united
as part of the achievement of the Megali Idea.
Cyprus led first to friction in Anglo-Greek relations.
Then in the 1950s, fearing the island would become a Greek base only
40 miles away if Britain abandoned it, Turkey again became vitally interested
in its future. To confuse matters further, the original role of Cyprus
as a base against Russia greatly revived in importance when, in the
1960s, the Soviet Union began to gain serious influence in the Middle
East. This now induced the United States to take a pronounced interest
in the British bases and intelligence listening posts in Cyprus, deeply
afraid that Cyprus could become a Mediterranean Cuba. President Makarios
seemed to be holding out this prospect if he could not have his way
with the Turkish Cypriots. He wanted them to be a minority, not an equal
partner in government.
In 1964 the UN, and all states save Turkey, in defiance
of the internationally agreed 1960 Constitution for the island, fearful
for the vulnerable bases and other facilities, consequently began to
treat them, by then purely Greek Cypriot government, as the legal government
of Cyprus. This put Greece and Turkey at odds, allowing Greece to use
its position in the EU to help the Greek Cypriots obtain EU membership
for Cyprus. Greece first threatened to block the EU/Turkey Custom Union
in 1995 if a date for EU accession negotiations for Cyprus was not given.
Secondly, Greece later intimated that EU enlargement would have to include
Cyprus. As a result, Cyprus is now threatening to veto Turkeys
entry into the European Union.
Is it then the case that in origin it is Anglo-American
interference in East Mediterranean affairs that has produced the present
difficulties for Turkey? This paper addresses this and related questions.
PROFESSOR ALLAN CHRISTELOW, IDAHO STATE UNIVERSITY:
The Muslim and Jewish Mediterranean in an American Mirror: Peter
Markoes Algerine Spy in Pennsylvania (1787)
ABSTRACT: Peter Markoes Algerine Spy in Pennsylvania was
the first piece of American literature on the North African states,
and it remains today the most neglected. When read through the optic
of literary scholars in search of Orientalist stereotypes. It can seem
a frustrating book compared to later works such as Susanna Rowsons
Slaves in Algiers (1794) or Royall Tylers Algerine Captive (1802).
Yet when read in light of a knowledge of the contemporary situation
in Algeria, derived especially from Arabic and Spanish sources, and
in light of Markoes own background and connections, it can be
seen as a work of remarkable richness, with a keen instinctive grasp
of the dilemmas facing both Algeria and America at the time. It is a
product of a time when Spanish-Algerian relations were at a key phase
of renegotiation, and before popular mobilization in the US to free
the Barbary captives. That mobilization laid the foundations for enduring
themes and images in America that are invoked to this day.
The presentation will first provide a synopsis of
Markoes book. Then it will provide a sketch of his background:
the son of a wealthy planter from St.Croix in the Danish Virgin Islands
whose family were in the process of transferring their capital to Philadelphia.
But Peter himself was a rebel, a lawyer by training but a writer by
avocation, and unlike the moneyed elite a partisan of Thomas Jeffersons
Next it will examine the re-negotiation of Algerian-Spanish
relations leading to the truce of 1785 and how this related to the larger
question of expanding Algerias commercial relations with Europe.
Key proponents of the new opening were Hasan Pasha, the future ruler
of Algiers, freelance diplomats the Comte dExpilly and John Wolf.
The Algerians had captured two American ships in 1785, and early correspondence
from one of the captains, Richard OBrien, indicates that these
figures immediately set to work cultivating his support of their plans.
As they knew well, however, there was scarcely a consensus in Algeria
to pursue such an opening.
Finally, the presentation will attempt to answer
the question of whether Peter Markoe had any contact, direct, or indirect
with the situation in Algeria, and whether any Algerians had a role
in formulating his book. The book consists of letters written by one
Mehmet, an Algerian sent to scout out the new land beyond
the ocean. It would certainly not have been out of character for Hasan
Pasha to send a spy secretly to America, nor to disown him
when it proved convenient. There is a documented case of Algerian spies,
at least some of whom were probably Jewish, being caught in Virginia.
Lacking the legal tools to extradite them, the virginia state government
apparently let them go on their way. And they announced quite plainly
that they wanted to get to Philadelphia, a cosmopolitan centre where
they could expect a much friendlier reception.
Mehmet, in the end, was betrayed by a traditionalist
rabbi in Lisbon, allied with conservative forces in Algiers. He was
stranded in America, left with no choice but to seek assimilation. Markoes
book can be seen as prescient, not only of the turbulence that would
spoil efforts at a new, enlightened opening in the Western Mediterranean,
but of the longer term trends and dilemmas that would affect Mediterranean
Muslims and Jews and Americas relations with both these communities.
His Jeffersonian vision was one of deep ambivalence, torn between a
commitment to new principles of democracy and liberty and a nationalistic
vision that excluded Non-Europeans and non-Christians.
DR JOHN WRIGHT, LONDON: Enforced migration:
The black slave trade across the Mediterranean
ABSTRACT: Historically, the Mediterranean Sea has been a forum
for traffic and exchange between the three Old World continents of Europe.
Asia and Africa. Commercial cargoes shipped in complex patterns between
ports around this inland sea, and its large and small islands, used
to include slaves of many types and origins. Indeed, a stealthy, small-scale
Mediterranean slave trade lasted until the very end of the 19th century.
During this enduring, enforced migration, black Africans were still
being herded by long and ancient roads across the central Sahara to
the outskirts of Tripoli, or to Benghazi, or other small harbours along
the coast of what is now Libya. Thence, as they had been for centuries
past, these unfortunates were shipped off to other cities and provinces
of the Ottoman Empire Constantinople, Smyrna, Salonika, Cyprus,
Syria, the Aegean islands and the southern Balkans. These were all places
where there was still a brisk demand for black slaves, and especially
for women and girls as domestic and concubines. This paper briefly traces
the rise and development of this branch of the black slave trade from
the early Islamic era; the Saharan routes slaves were forced to travel;
the North African markets where they were sold for export; their Mediterranean
voyages to points of final sale; their numbers, ages and sex ratios;
the prices and profits made on them. It also considers how the coming
of steam navigation and European abolitionist pressures into the Mediterranean
in the mid-19th century changed the appearance, but not necessarily
the substance, of the trade until other events took control at that
MIKE JEMPSON, THE MEDIAWISE TRUST, BRISTOL, UK:
Aliens and the Media. Lessons from the Refugees, Asylum-seekers
and the Media (RAM) Project
ABSTRACT: In the mid-1990s, the media ethics charity PressWise
(since renamed MediaWise) which provides advice and support to
individuals and groups unfairly treated by the UK print and broadcast
media noted an upsurge in hostile and inaccurate coverage of
refugee and asylum issues, and to those who supported them.
The term asylum-seeker rapidly changed from being
a sympathetic description to a form of abuse which combined fear and
loathing of immigrants and more than a hint of racism. Sensational stories
and statistics, and xenophobic commentaries, variously represented those
seeking asylum as economic migrants or criminals determined to abuse
the goodwill of a post-colonial power.
After the 2001 al Qaeda attack on the USA, people
identifiable as strangers in our midst became regarded as
an even more dangerous menace, whether or not they were recently arrived
or born here. By now asylum had become a major political issue, and
startling headlines about them were a sure fire way of increasing tabloid
Concerned that sensible political dialogue and human
rights were being harmed by the way the issues were being handled in
the mass media the Refugees, Asylum-seekers and the Media (RAM) Project,
was set up in 1999, as a strategic initiative to improve media coverage.
It began by examining the media strategies of refugee support groups,
and went on to engage concerned citizens in dialogue with media professionals.
It provides information and advice to refugee community organisations,
encourages academic monitoring studies, and has created a network of
exiled journalists to provide a voice for those whose stories were not
The presentation will explain the work and achievements
of the RAM Project (recently published as the RAM Report, June 2005),
revisit some of the more sensational inaccuracies that have appeared
in the UK media, and ask what messages may be drawn from media coverage
over the last five years.
PROFESSOR STUART SCHAAR, BROOKLYN COLLEGE, CUNY:
President Woodrow Wilson and the Young Tunisians
ABSTRACT: Tunisian nationalists saw in Wilsons fourteen
points an occasion to play on the contradictions in the post- World
War I alliance and weaken Frances hold over its Tunisian protectorate.
In the 1970s other Tunisians struggling for greater human rights exploited
President Jimmy Carters support for this issue to engage Americans
and use them to help form Tunisias first human rights organization.
I was involved in the 1970s attempt to liberalize the Tunisian regime
of President Habib Bourguiba. I helped form a delegation of prominent
U.S. citizens who traveled to Tunisia and participated in the founding
conference of the countrys human rights organization. We met first
in the Tunisian airport and then in the street in front of the Africa
hotel, since soldiers prohibited us from meeting inside the building.
Faced with armed officers holding machine guns, the organizers of the
human rights organization of the mid-70s went ahead anyway, confident
that the military would not attack them while the U.S. delegation was
present. Jimmy Carters policies in promoting human rights had
reached into the North African country of Tunisia. In a similar way,
Woodrow Wilsons verbal support for self-determination lent legitimacy
to the Young Tunisians demand for a Constitution and an elected
assembly after the first World War. My own experiences during Jimmy
Carters presidency has given me insights into what may have happened
during the earlier period.
As early as 1962 Nicola Ziadeh in his book on the
development of Tunisian nationalism had pointed out that the Young Tunisians
had sent a telegram to President Wilson asking his help to end the French
Protectorate. Using arguments that they thought might convince President
Wilson of the justice of their claims, the Young Tunisians took their
case to the International Tribunal for Rights and Justice, demanding
that the court conduct an investigation into conditions in Tunisia.
The Tribunal refused to intervene on the grounds that what transpired
in the Protectorate was considered an internal matter of France and
did not fall within the courts jurisdiction. One member of the
Young Tunisians living in exile in Berne Switzerland, Muhammad Bach
Hanba, wrote to Wilson in April 1919 asking him to help place Tunisia
under the protection of the soon to be formed League of Nations, in
effect taking it away from France. During 1919 the Young Tunisians,
led by Abd al-Azīz al-ThaĀlbī, attempted
to contact Wilson while the President resided in France. Their attempts
to do so, with the help of the French President of the Human Rights
Organization, failed. Wilson took the same position as the International
Tribunal and did not intervene in Tunisian affairs.
This brings up the more general question of Wilsons
position on self-determination. Despite his verbal support for this
notion, he did little to undermine the established colonial order. In
Latin America he even ordered marines into Cuba and other countries
to stem nationalist uprisings. This paper also examines the new secondary
literature on Wilson and his position on self-determination more generally.
I have consulted the Wilson papers at Princeton University
and read through all their documents for the year 1919. In addition
I seen archives in Tunisia (those of the Prime Ministers office)
and in France at Nantes belonging to the Minister of Foreign Affairs
and in Paris, the Quai dOrsay archives. In addition, new books
and articles on Wilson examine critically his positions on self-determination.
All these sources help to clarify his impact on Tunisia, and by extrapolation,
on other countries of the third world.
DR KHALID BEN-SRHIR, UNIVERSITÉ HASSAN II, MOHAMMEDIA, MAROC:
Piraterie et contreband en Méditerranée
Occidentale: le Cas du Rif et Gibraltar
ABSTRACT: Les cotes du Rif au sud de la méditerranée
occidentale ont souvent constitué, à travers le temps,
une zone privilégiée pour la piraterie et la contrebande.
Mais à partir de la seconde moitié du XIXe siècle,
et dans un moment ou les puissances industrielles de lépoque,
Grande Bretagne en tête, ont décidé de mettre un
terme à la piraterie au niveau international, les tribus du Rif
ont persisté et continuaient pendant toute la seconde moitié
du XIXe siècle à perpétrer des attaques contre
les navires Britanniques en particulier, et européens dune
manière générale. Les choses ce compliquent, lorsquon
découvre en fin de compte quil ne sagissait pas dactes
de piraterie classique, mais de règlement de comptes entre quelques
tribus du Rif et des contrebandiers Anglais et espagnoles très
actifs en Méditerranée Occidentale, impliqués directement
dans un trafic lucratif darmes modernes entre Gibraltar et les
cotes rifaines. Ce trafic, prend de lampleur et des dimensions
dordre militaire et politique, pendant les moments de tension
entre lEspagne et le Maroc, notamment vers 1859 lors du déclenchement
de la guerre de Tétouan, et en 1893 lors de la guerre de Melilla.
Nous proposons dans ce papier de présenter une étude de
cas très précis dactes de « piraterie »
et de contrebande auxquels les Anglais étaient impliqués
soit comme acteur ou victimes, et ceci à partir de documents
Britanniques et marocaines rarement exploités.
DR SAUL KELLY, JOINT SERVICES COMMAND AND STAFF COLLEGE, UK:
Britain, Libya and start of the Cold War
ABSTRACT: The question of the Italian Colonies (that is, the
future of Eritrea, Somalia and Libya) from 1945-1952 played a significant
part in the breakdown of postwar Allied co-operation and the start of
the Cold War.
At the heart of this question lay the dispute between
Britain and the USSR over Libya. Issues such as the political complexion
of an independent Libyan state and international access to its strategic
facilities proved highly contentious in the conference diplomacy and
strategic planning of the early Cold War years. While Britain sought
to establish a client state in Cyrenaica that would underpin its position
on the eastern Mediterranean, the Soviet Union tried to claim Tripolitania
as a war prize that would secure Soviet access to the inland sea.
Based primarily on British and American sources,
this chapter will analyze how the subsequent Anglo-Soviet struggle over
Libya contributed to the disintegration of the wartime Grand Alliance
and the onset of the Cold War. It will also consider the success of
British efforts to establish a new client state in the eastern Mediterranean
to buttress Britains Middle East position.
DR KEITH HAMILTON, FOREIGN & COMMONWEALTH OFFICE, LONDON:
Régime change and détente: Britain
and the transition from dictatorship to democracy in Spain and Portugal,
ABSTRACT: The position of Portugal was, according to the British
Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, a test of détente.
That, at any rate, was what he told the Soviet leader, Leonid Brezhnev,
on 1 August 1975. The message, which reflected Wilsons own concern
over the apparent threat posed by communists and other parties of the
extreme left to Portugals nascent democracy, was all the more
poignant since it was delivered personally only minutes before the signing
of the Helsinki Final Act, one of the highpoints of détente in
Europe in the 1970s. It was also a salutary reminder that at a time
when many commentators and some diplomats believed the Cold War to be
over, developments in the Mediterranean basin appeared to portend an
extension, if not necessarily an intensification, of the East/West ideological
struggle. Whilst the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe
(CSCE) had been engaged in its laborious deliberations in Geneva, Natos
southern flank had plunged into crisis. The Yom Kippur war of October
1973 had already revealed profound divisions between the United States
and its European allies in their attitude towards the region, particularly
after Donald Rumsfelds delayed announcement in the North Atlantic
Council that American forces had been put on low-level alert, and the
subsequent Arab oil boycott had contributed to the onset of a world
economic recession which brought suddenly to a halt over twenty-five
years of unparalleled economic growth. Hardly less disconcerting for
the Atlantic alliance were the events of the following year: the revolution
in Portugal, the Greek government-inspired coup in Cyprus, Turkeys
military intervention in the island, and the uncertainty surrounding
Greeces future following the fall of the colonels régime
in Athens. In addition, the Western allies were worried by the political
instability which some feared would follow the death of two ageing dictators,
Franco in Spain and Tito in Yugoslavia, and by the possibility of communists
entering government in France and Italy. The situation did not go unnoticed
in Moscow where party ideologists openly debated how the crisis
of capitalism might best be exploited to advance the cause of
world socialism. And by the autumn of 1975 American analysts were speculating
on whether for the Russians régime change might render détente
and Brezhnevs Westpolitik redundant.
This paper focuses on British reactions to the revolutionary
developments in Portugal following Caetanos fall, and on British
policy towards Spain in the months preceding and immediately following
Francos death. It covers differences within the Atlantic Alliance
over the handling of Portugal, particularly those resulting from Kissingers
tendency to assume that it would be better to exclude a communist-dominated
Portugal from Nato, and those relating to whether or not the Western
powers should seek to influence the Soviet Union and its supposed encouragement
of red revolution in Lisbon by threatening to cancel plans for a CSCE
summit in Helsinki. In the Spanish context the paper similarly examines
problems arising between the United States and Western Europe over the
prospect of drawing a non-democratic Spain into closer ties with Nato
prior to Francos death. British diplomats, some of whom wished
to avoid a repetition of events in Portugal by encouraging contacts
between representatives of the British and Spanish administrative and
military establishments, had to cope with Labour politicians whose memories
of the Spanish Civil War set them against any liaison with the régime
in Madrid. While in the case of Portugal British diplomacy struggled
to come to terms with a revolutionary present, in the case of Spain
it was ensnared by a reactionary past. Both countries ultimately succeeded
in making the transition to democracy, but ironically Portugals
retreat from empire, which the British government had encouraged, was
soon followed by civil war in Angola Soviet and Cuban involvement in
which did much to undermine the achievements of détente in Europe.
DR EFFIE PEDALIU, SCHOOL OF HISTORY, UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST
OF ENGLAND, BRISTOL: The US, the Mediterranean and the Cold War,
ABSTRACT: The deployment of American power in the Mediterranean
in the post WWII period was incremental and hesitant. Initially, and
up until, the second half of 1946, the US saw its role in the region
as merely a supporting one to that of the UK. It was the British weakness
in fulfilling its role that led the US to assume more responsibility.
Although, the geostrategic importance of the region was recognised from
early on, the US treated the region in a fragmented fashion. As crises
developed American power was deployed to contain them, maintain the
balance of power and keep the region safe for Western interests. It
was only after the outbreak of the Cold War in Europe and Asia that
the Mediterranean acquired the primacy of the North Sea and the Atlantic
in American strategic thinking and it was only then that the US took
steps to turn it into a true mare nostrum for American power. The paper
will also argue that American hegemony over the Mediterranean region
was completed in three stages:
- The stage of power sharing with Britain,
which lasted from autumn 1943 until autumn 1946. During this period
American policy was directed towards issues arising from the war and
post war setting. It aimed at tackling these issues in cooperation
- The transitional stage, which lasted from
1947 to 1949. During this period American policy aimed at replacing
waning British power, which led to the direct involvement of the US
not only in the Greek Civil War but also in areas of the Southern
rim of the region such as Palestine.
- The hegemonic stage from 1940-57 during
which America proceeded to establish and institutionalise its hegemony
throughout the basin.
AHMED FAROUK, ECOLE PRATIQUE DES HAUTES ETUDES, PARIS:
Une police des mers pour neutraliser les corsaires
marocains au XVIIIe siècle
ABSTRACT: Parmi les inconvénients de voyages daffaires
dans les eaux de la Méditerranée occidentale, au XVIIIe
siècle, on peut avancer la présence active des corsaires
marocains. Les Salétins, comme on les appelait dans les documents
consulaires de lEurope occidentale, inquiètent marins et
patrons des bâtiments de commerce qui fréquentent les eaux
du détroit de Gibraltar et des mers proches. La rencontre avec
un Salétin, quand on nest pas armé pour la guerre,
est toujours signe de mauvaise augure, et les risques de perdre biens
transportés, équipage et liberté sont grands et
bien réels dans ces parages.
Les nations maritimes chrétiennes (Angleterre,
Pays-Bas, France) touchées par le phénomène corsaire
marocain, ont maintes fois manifesté leur inquiétude puis
leur exaspération face au tord que subit le commerce. Aussi pensent-elles,
dans un premier temps, que la solution pour enrayer ce phénomène
désastreux pour les affaires, passerait par la négociation
et la signature de traités de paix pour la liberté du
commerce et de la navigation en Méditerranée occidentale.
Mais les intéressés sont divisés et les exigences
des Marocains ne sont pas favorablement reçues dans toutes les
chancelleries. Et au Maroc une attention plus particulière est
accordée aux Anglais qui acceptent de fournir au sultan de la
poudre et des agrès, au grand dam des autres nations. Lattitude
des Anglais est compréhensible voire légitime; le maintien
du Rocher de Gibraltar mérite bien quelques concessions. Les
activités diplomatiques ouvrant des négociations pour
la signature dun traités de paix entre le Maroc et les
nations chrétiennes au début du XVIIIe siècle,
piétinent et trainent en longueur. Elles débouchent dans
la plupart des cas sur la libération de quelques captifs et au
mieux on aboutit à une rédemption générale.
On se rend bien compte que les sultans du Maroc tirent de la course
des avantages substantiels et un certain orgueil. Et la signature dun
traité de paix en bonne et due forme équivaudrait au tarissement
de la source qui alimente, par intermittence, les caisses de lEtat
en période de crises et dagitation sociales. Après
la mort de Moulay Ismaël (1727), les prétendants au trône,
nombreux, avaient besoin dargent pour payer les services des Abids,
cette armée mise en place par le sultan défunt, et qui
nobéissait désormais quà celui qui
faisait preuve de grandes largesses à leur égard. Les
rentrées pécuniaires, suite à la vente des captifs,
durant la période dinterrègne, ont donc permis de
maintenir les princes sans pauvres dans lespoir doccuper
un pour la première place de lempire.
Léchec des moyens diplomatiques a déterminé
les nations maritimes, usagers de la route maritime passant par le détroit
de Gibraltar, à prendre en main la défense de leur commerce
et la protection de leurs marins. Et cest ainsi quune police
des mers, patrouillant au large des côtes marocaines est mise
en place. On devrait plutôt parler des polices puisque chaque
nation déploie les moyens nécessaires de contrôle
en fonction des circonstances. Ainsi les frégates françaises
et hollandaises qui croisent de part et dautre du détroit
de Gibraltar rassurent les ressortissants de toutes les nations présents
à Cadix, Tétuan ou Malaga. Par contre les Anglais du fait
de leur présence permanente dans le détroit, adoptent
un système de surveillance et de protection mixte : terrestre
et maritime. Là nous avons un cas unique qui souligne la particularité
anglaise en matière de police des mers : la présence dun
bâtiment scrutant les mouvements du littoral marocain pendant
plusieurs années, de quoi dissuader le plus téméraire
Les mouvements des frégates de surveillance,
atténuent pendant certaines périodes lactivité
des corsaires. Mais cette présence armée ne peut être
continûment maintenue à cause des frais lourds quelle
génère. Et ce ne sera que sous le règne de Sidi
Mohammed ben Abd Allah que des changements politiques profonds
apporteront un début de règlement et coopération.
DR COLIN HEYWOOD, UNIVERSITY OF HULL: Whats
in a name? The onomastics of Algerine fleet lists circa 1700: a possible source
for prosopographic and technological naval history
1. Names of ships
- Imber, study of navy of Suleyman I, from Ottoman financial records:
ships all in fact galleys have no names.
- In the English navy of Henry VIIIs time, and by 1600, all
English naval ships have names the Mary Rose best known.
- In the Ottoman fleet at end of 17 century, by which time line of
battle ships were being built (cf. Idris Bostan) ships still
have no names (identified by name/rank of commander).
- But, the shipbuilding revolution occurs much earlier in Algiers:
by 2nd half of 17 century Algerine war vessels of the Atlantic type
all appear to have names (though smaller vessels and galleys still
- Starting point is a study of Algerine ship names published more
than 30 years ago by Guy Turbet-delof (Revu. Internationale dOnomastique,
xxi, 1970), a short but insightful piece of work.
- 1st. Question: do names (or names) come into use coevally
with the adoption of round ships at beg. Cf 17 century,
and with the renegades who pour into Algiers at that time, especially
from Holland and England, where they are used to serving on or commanding
ships which are identified by name.
- Names are actually iconographic and analphabetic, like
public house signs (and other establishments, from mercers to booksellers)
in an age of minimal literacy.
- 2nd Question: Is this the reason for the difference and uniqueness??
of Algerine (and other Barbary) corsair practice amongst Muslim/Islamic/Ottoman
shipping of the pre-modern era?
2. Use of Algerine ships names (or names)
- We have the lists used earlier by Turbet-Delof and Belhamissi
but only ones and twos. With more nine from English
archival sources covering period 1675-1715 some questions can
be asked since ships can be, with some accuracy identified.
- Consuls and others who made the lists collected information also
on number of guns, number of crew, and name and ethnicity of commander/reis.
- hence, we can ask technological and prosopographic questions and
compare the Algerine (and other Barbary) war fleets with European
and Otoman ones;
- establish a prosopography of the reises;
- estimate number of crews, both for sailling and oared vessels
fits or not w/estimates re number of Xn slaves in use at time ...
Sources indigenous and foreign ... Some thoughts.
PROFESSOR JAMIL ABUN-NASR, BAYREUTH, GERMANY
Chaired a Session, and presented a paper at the table ronde on
The sessions were chaired by
Professor Jamil Abun-Nasr, Bayreuth, Germany
Professor Allan Christelow, Idaho State University, USA
Professor Hédi Bouraoui, York University, Toronto, Canada
Mr Ronald Nettler, University of Oxford
SUFI TEXTS WORKSHOP (13 July 2005)
Convened by Ronald L Nettler, The Oriental Institute,
The University of Oxford
This one-day workshop brought together a group of eight
scholars who work on sufi texts in Arabic. The purpose of the workshop
was to read and to discuss a range of texts presented by the participants
and drawn from their research. The participants submitted in advance
the text they wished to present for reading and discussion. The texts
were then circulated among all the participants for reading before the
workshop. The selected texts were (1-5 A4 pages) and illustrate basic
features and problems of a particular type of sufi literature in Arabic.
Each participant was allocated one hour. Participation was by invitation
only, but a small number of non-speakers who have an interest in the
subject were welcome to attend. They were mainly participants from the
larger Maghreb Review conference. Our goal was to have serious discussion
in a fairly small group. We hope this workshop will be the first of
a series of workshops each with different participants from various
universities and countries.