Deadline: Nov 30, 2016
Reception and Transformation of Ancient Sea Power
The reception of antiquity in the Middle Ages and especially the Early
Modern period has been extensively studied. Sea power and thalassocracy
are familiar topics in the fields of classics and ancient history.
Nevertheless, only rarely have the two themes been combined, and to
date there has been no overarching treatment of the later reception of
ancient sea power.
In order to fill this gap, we organized a conference in Berlin in May
2015, entitled ‘Thalassokratographie: Rezeption und Transformation
antiker Seeherrschaft’. This title was programmatic. On the one hand,
we were interested in the act of writing about sea power and
thalassocracy, in the act of creating images and ideas that gave
ancient sea power a prominent place in later times –
‘thalassocrato-graphy’, so to speak, not ‘thalassocracy’. On the other,
we were concerned with issues of transformation. The conference was not
focused solely on a one-dimensional process of reception of classical
antiquity in later epochs, but aimed above all to ask how, during this
process, images and ideas of antiquity were newly created, with which
intentions and to what ends, and how these newly-developed ideas about
ancient texts, myths and narratives may even have influenced the later
scholarly treatment of these phenomena.
The reception of ancient sea power
– in architecture
– as part of monuments or fountains
– in the visual arts, esp. in paintings
– in music
– in literature, esp. historical novels
– in the naming of ships
– in film, theatre and opera
– in modern mass media
Submission Details
Abstracts of no more than 300 words and a short CV should be sent
before 30 November 2016 to Those who submitted an
abstract will be informed within two weeks whether or not their
proposals have been accepted. Final versions of accepted papers should
then be submitted by 31 March 2017.
Christian Wendt ( and Hans Kopp
( will be glad to answer any questions you might

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