On 25 April 2016, the Natolin (Warsaw) campus of the College of Europe welcomed Dr Cecilia TARRUELL and Dr Guido VAN MEERSBERGEN from the European University Institute, who presented a workshop titled "The Meanings of 'Europe': Historical Views on Current Issues", organized by the European Civilization Chair.
In response to the current refugee crisis and recent strikes of terrorism on EU territory, politicians and other commentators have resorted to denouncing threats to "our way of life" and invoking the supposed Judeo-Christian and/or Enlightenment foundations of European culture. This jointly-taught workshop addressed the historical development of a European sense of belonging through a focus on the formative period 1500-1800, which saw the crystallization of the idea of "Europe".
About the speakers:
Dr Cecilia TARRUELL is a historian of the Spanish Empire and the Mediterranean world during the early modern period. She completed her PhD at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM) in 2015. Dr TARRUELL currently holds a Max Weber Fellowship at the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence, where she carries out postdoctoral research on contacts and human circulations between Christian and Islamic lands during the late 16th and early 17th centuries.
Dr Guido VAN MEERSBERGEN is a historian of early modern European expansion in Asia. He completed his PhD at University College London (UCL) in 2014, after which he has taught at the University of Amsterdam and Leiden University. Dr VAN MEERSBERGEN currently holds a Max Weber Fellowship at the European University Institute (EUI), where he carries out postdoctoral research on European diplomats in early modern South Asia.