Islands as transit posts in the news networks of early sixteenth century
Yelçe, Zeynep Nevin and Bozok, Ela (2019) Islands as transit posts in the news networks of early sixteenth century. In: European Islands Between Isolated and Interconnected Life Worlds: Interdisciplinary Long Term Perspectives, Castle Hohentübingen, Tübingen, Germany (Accepted/In Press)
This paper reflects on the role of islands on the Mediterranean as transit posts in the news networks of the early sixteenth century. Based on research carried out within the framework of the ‘TUBITAK 1001 Scientific and Technologic Research Support Fund’ project numbered 113K655 (Ottoman Empire in the Mediterranean Intelligence Network during the First Half of the 16th Century), this study traces the routes of letters and reports from Eastern Mediterranean port cities to Venice from where news would be distributed to various cities in Europe. Our research investigates the hubs where various pieces of oral and written news within a wide range of sources from official letters to eyewitness accounts, from familial correspondence to rumours came together to be delivered collectively. As news travelled through the sea routes, this study focuses especially on the islands of Corfu, Crete, Rhodes, and Cyprus as main information hubs. In a period when regular postal systems were not fully developed, the role of the islands as transit points for news flow sheds light on the importance of islands in the dynamics of communication in the early sixteenth century.
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