Ny seminarieserie från Svenska Atheninstitutet

Small States in the Making: The Nordic and Mediterranean Regions (Obs! På plats i Athen, ej zoom)

In the context of the NORMED project, the Research Centre for the Humanities (RCH), the Danish Institute at Athens, the Finnish Institute at Athens, the Norwegian Institute at Athens, and the Swedish Institute at Athens are co-organizing this first series of seminars, aiming to discuss the project’s broader themes. This series of seminars aspires to cross-examine the Nordics and the Mediterranean, studying the two regions through the concept of “smallness”. Geopolitically, both regions are not usually juxtaposed and are not examined together, as they appear to have many significant differences. Nevertheless, in modern times, the history of both regions is, in one sense, the history of small states/entities, which emerged through complex geopolitical rearrangements during the 18th and 19th centuries from the Baltic to the Mediterranean—changes and shifts caused by wars, revolutions, and the dissolution of Empires. The resulting political entities devised many ways to survive and relate to the larger states on their borders and the different great civilizations, such as Germanic, Slavic, Asian/Ottoman. The seminars of this first series will take place at the RCH’s offices (26, Mandrokleous Str., Neos Kosmos, Athens – “Neos Kosmos” Metro Station).


Thursday April 11, 2024 | 18.30-20.30 Mogens Pelt | Associate Professor in International History, The Saxo Institute, University of Copenhagen “Becoming small: the case of Denmark and the Imperative of the Regional (1814-1945)” Discussant Ada Dialla, Professor of Modern and Contemporary European History, Department of Art Theory and History, Athens School of Fine Arts | President of the Executive Administrative Board, RCH


It is easy to get the impression that small states are “small by nature” and that we need to focus on the primate of smallness to understand the constraints placed upon them and the room of manoeuvre which they use to navigate in the game among nations.Instead this lecture will discuss the process by which Denmark became small and how that forced her to reinvent her place among nations and how it shaped the norms that came to form the political culture of that country.

Speaker’s CV

Mogens Pelt Ph.D et Dr.Phil. is Associate Professor in International History at the History Section at the Saxo-Institute, University of Copenhagen. He was the Director of the Danish Institute at Athens 2020 to 2024; he is directing the research project The Greek Revolution and European Republicanism, 1815-1830: Ideas of Nation, People and Citizenship in the Making of the Constitutional State (Independent Research Fund Denmark); co-director with Professor Catharina Raudvere at the Centre ‘Many Roads in Modernity: South-eastern Europe and its Ottoman Roots’, University of Copenhagen (Carlsberg Foundation); member of directing board of Centre of the Study of Nationalism University of Copenhagen). He was a Stanley J. Seeger Fellow at the Program in Hellenic Studies, Princeton University 2008-9, attached to the Commission established by the Danish Parliament to Investigate the Danish Security Intelligence Service 2007-8; a researcher in the project Captive States, Divided Societies, Political Institutions of Southeastern Europe in Historical Comparative Perspective (Volkswagen Foundation); a visiting Fellow at the Department of Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University in 1999 and Deputy-director at the Danish Institute at Athens, 1993-96.