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TRACING IDENTITY IN THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN; A Digital Survey of Late Medieval Monuments in the Eastern Mediterranean Islands (TIEM)
Start date: 01 Jun 2009, End date: 31 May 2013 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"This project proposes the interdisciplinary examination of the monumental heritage of the Medieval Mediterranean. Specifically, the program’s objective is the creation of a comprehensive digital repository of the late medieval monuments of the islands of the Eastern Mediterranean using state-of-the-art technological tools. Research will cover the eastern part of the Mediterranean basin beginning with Cyprus, Rhodes and Chios to be progressively extended to Crete and other Aegean islands. The program offers a novel methodology that adjusts to the complex socio-political realities of the Medieval Mediterranean. Research focuses on the understudied period that followed the collapse of the Latin kingdom of Jerusalem in 1187 until the capture of Crete by the Ottomans in 1669. In this volatile environment, Cyprus, Chios, Rhodes and Crete became Europe’s gateways to the East; as such, they will be the central examples of this study. These islands will not be isolated studies but the pivotal mirrors to explore the region. The proposed methodology offers three levels of analysis starting from the broader geographical bodies and their location in the region, then moving to the specific locales, to finally study individual monuments. The application of informatics, GIS technologies, the use of digital libraries, and the utilization of scanning and CAD technologies will offer an invaluable record of extant architectural and archaeological remains. The in-depth documentation of surviving monuments in the above islands will be followed by the comparative examination of physical evidence against textural sources and the historical background of the period. Hosted by the Cyprus Institute, the proposed program traces aspects of the formation and appropriation of social and religious identity in the Medieval Mediterranean. This is a topic of great contemporary relevance for the EU as it offers an enhanced understanding of the intricate cultural realities of the broader region."
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