ERC Securing Europe, Fighting its enemies, 1815-1914


7 February 2020
10:30 - 11:30
Academy Hall, Domplein 29, Utrecht, The Netherlands

PhD Defence Erik de Lange

On 7 February Erik de Lange will defend his PhD thesis: Menacing Tides. Security, Piracy and Empire in the Nineteenth-Century Mediterranean.

The fight against piracy changed the face of the Mediterranean forever. Over the course of the nineteenth century, the repression of the so-called ‘Barbary pirates’ from the North African states of Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli inspired diplomatic interventions, destructive bombardments and unprecedented forms of military cooperation. It also opened the door to European imperial expansion and colonial rule on the Mediterranean’s southern shores.


Starting in 1815, when peace in Europe brought different states together in new projects of cooperation, perceptions of a piratical threat were turned into implemented policies and military campaigns. High-ranking diplomats, pirate captains, ruined merchants and unsuspecting tourists turned the Mediterranean Sea into a space of security.