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b Oct 21 - Bulkan Problem

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Alicia Mc Kenzie

The Bulkan Problem: Slavs,Avars, and the Eastern Empire Who were the Slavs? Historiography, archeology, and ethnogenesis Procopius (500’s) Slavs in “Democracy” Said as if it is a problem(as if they didn’t have a gov’t Non-centralized gov’t (agrarian) Pseudo-Maurice, Strategikon Military doc on strategy, tactics Sclavenoi Agrarian, not militarized Antes Military class {pseuo means thought to be dif person, now known as a dif person} Nationalist bias History of Eastern Europe in 20 century due to soviet union influence Borders arbitrarily redrawn So origin of the slavs exploited by modern scholars (open to interpretation) Tacitus: Venedi/Venethi Jordanes: Carpathians (famous book) Moral work on german peoples Writes about Goths Ppl take what he wrote about to be truth Racenna Cosmographic Says slavs from stepped / Ukraine Slavic origins are very murky The Slavic Migration Prague Culture Culture very utilitarian Farming patterns Similar material cultures in the area, so don’t know where the lines were drawn Evidence they had common approach to lifestyle People may have just practiced what made practical sense for them Domino theory and the huns? th th 6 /7 century Hun empire had started to break down, possible Slavs took their place Slavacization Slav very good at converting people to their culture (their culture was also attractive) New Tribal States Archontes, hegemones(chief man), etnarchai (all terms for chief men) Further back developmentally Balkan Expansion Justin I (Justnian’s uncle and predecessor) Byzantine Preoccupation with Persians Denuded Border Border not a priority, shut down fortresses along Danube Leave themselves open to Slavs The First Balkan “Wars” Justinian (527-565) Renewed Slavic raiding Distraction in west Averted expedition to Thessalonica Justinian cannot afford to lose this city (a main capital in west) Persians predictable, Slavs not Eastern empire not prepared to handle unpredictability The Slavs and theAvars Avars – 558 appearance around black sea Period of military dominance over Slavs But Slavs bring them into Slavic culture Can absorb smaller leadership groups that are more militarized Mass Slavic settlement around Thessalonia (581) “Roman island in Slavic city” Fall of Sirmium (582) Main choke point preventing slav migration down the peninsula (Italy?) Don’t get it back for a long time Emperor Maurice (d.602) Avar/Persian attack on Constantinople (626) Avars power in North, but can’t handle Empire
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