Representations of Romania in British Public and Political Discourse, 1907–1919

DUNLOP, Tessa (2020). Representations of Romania in British Public and Political Discourse, 1907–1919. Doctoral, Sheffield Hallam University.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.7190/shu-thesis-00388
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    Abstract

    This thesis examines representations of Romania in British public and political discourse from 1907, when an extensive and violent Peasants’ Revolt erupted in Romania, to the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, where the country doubled in size. Britain’s detachment from southeastern Europe was briefly reversed in this period of conflict and diplomacy. Romania was eventually acquired as an Entente ally in 1916 and Britain subsequently played a considerable role in the adjudication of Greater Romania’s borders and minorities. Located between two large multi-national empires, Austria-Hungary and Russia, which were both home to extensive Romanian populations, and bordering the Balkan Peninsula, much of it governed by the Ottoman Empire until 1912-13, Romania is a complex case study in the creation of national identities. The Balkan wars in 1912-13 forced Britain to come to terms with a strategically more significant Romania, an exploration of which will demonstrate both the motivations behind and limitations of British ‘expertise’ and highlight the power dynamics and volatility involved in external imaging during periods of extreme dislocation. Efforts to discover a politically useful identity for Romania were impacted by various competing national constructs, with Romania’s Jewish Question and the priority accorded to the Romanians in Hungary’s Transylvania reinforcing opposing ideas about the country and its status in Europe. It was the wartime propaganda generated by British-born Queen Marie of Romania that played an important part in the broader process of national legitimisation, and an examination of her work and imaging will argue for the central role of monarchy in national representations. A decade of conflict saw European regional groupings overlap and realign, with the demands of war and Romania’s contradictory features exacerbating the country’s fluid place in British discourse. This malleability saw Romania’s identity pivot from Eastern, through Balkan to Latin and Central European spatial groupings in a ten year period, with Britan’s determination to embrace a post-war New Europe facilitated through representations of Greater Romania in which Transylvanian identity was prioritised over Old Kingdom associations.

    Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
    Additional Information: Director of studies: Professor Bruce Collins "No PQ harvesting"
    Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.7190/shu-thesis-00388
    Depositing User: Colin Knott
    Date Deposited: 06 Oct 2021 14:04
    Last Modified: 06 Oct 2021 14:15
    URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/29136

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