Research School for Economic and Social History


Two-year Postdoc position ‘Classical roots of (early) modern colonization’ – deadline 27 March 2023

Applications are invited for a fully funded two-year Postdoc position within the research project Classical roots of (early) modern colonization at Groningen University (UG) and the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome (KNIR), coordinated by Professor Tesse Stek and Dr Jeremia Pelgrom.

As we see vividly in the current newspapers, colonization and its impacts form one of the most defining forces in human history. As such, colonization has been a crucial phenomenon in the making of the modern globalized world. Although the impact of colonization on the modern world order is well known, and is currently object of fierce academic and societal debate, the deep historical roots of colonial ideologies and practices have remained underexplored. Recent colonization studies on the impact and organization of colonial rule, and on the ideologies that have shaped these practices, show the long history and resilience of colonial paradigms. Ultimately, these paradigms originate in classical antiquity. Classical models of colonization, themselves manifold and pluriform, thus continue to shape the organization of the modern world – both implicitly and explicitly.

The project Classical roots of (early) modern colonization aims to shed light on this intricate relationship between the classical past and the (early) modern world. The project is organized as part of the Caput Mundi initiative between the University of Groningen and the Royal Netherlands Institute in Rome. Caput Mundi aims to intensify the connections between UG and KNIR and its international network. By focusing on interdisciplinary research, Caput Mundi broadens the research community that profits from the KNIR and establishes connections between different UG faculties and departments. Within the context of the Caput Mundi network, research themes are developed. The Classical roots of (early) modern colonization program is the first theme, and will run for 5 years. It brings different scholars together that are currently working in different departments and faculties, in particular archaeology, ancient history, classics, American studies, Roman law, international studies and religion studies, and more may follow.

Applications should be submitted ultimately by 27 March 2023 via the dedicated application page.