This volume contributes to contemporary debates on hegemony, power and identity in contemporary historical and anthropological literature through an examination of the imperial encounter between the British and the Greeks of the Ionian Islands during the 19th century. Each chapter focused on a different aspect of the imperial encounter, with topics including identity construction, the contestation over civil society, gender and the manipulation of public space, hegemony and accommodation, the role of law and of the institutions of criminal justice, and religion and imperial domination. It argues that a great deal can be learned about colonializm in general through an analysis of the Ionian Islands, precisely because the colonial encounter was so atypical. For example, it demonstrates that because the Ionian Greeks were racially white, Christian and descendents of Europe's classical forebears, the process of colonial identity formation was more ambiguous and complex than elsewhere in the Empire where physical and cultural distinctions were more obvious. Colonial officers finally decided the Ionian Greeks were Mediterranean Irish who should be treated like European savages.
by : Thomas W. Gallant