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Kostopoulou, Elektra

Elektra Kostopoulou

Part-Time Lecturer

106 Van Dyck Hall

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Research and Teaching Interests

Elektra Kostopoulou received her B.A. (2001) and M.A. (2004) degrees in history from Aristotle University (Thessaloniki, Greece). She holds a Ph.D. (2009) in history from Bosphorus University (Istanbul, Turkey) and has been the recipient of various awards, fellowships, and grants. From 2006 to 2010 she taught at Istanbul Bilgi University and has since relocated to the USA, as a fellow at Princeton (2010-2011), Columbia (2011-2012), and New York Universities (2012-2013). In 2013 she joined the MGSP at Rutgers University, teaching courses of Modern-Greek history from a comparative perspective.

Her research and publications have to do with comparative empires in Europe and the Middle East, touching upon global studies and exploring concepts of administration that pertain to religious diversity, minority politics, local sovereignty, centralization, and federalism, all the way from the late-Ottoman Empire to the European Union. Her first book, The Island of Leros as an Ottoman Province: History through the Books of the Local Elders (Athens: Philistror Publications, 2005), is a monograph on the socio-economic transformations experienced by a small Aegean island at the dusk of the Ottoman era. Her current project, Of Minarets and Minotaurs: The Story of Autonomous Crete (1898-1913), addresses regional autonomy through incomplete transitions from empires to nation-states, at the intersection of the local and the international.

Indicative Courses

  • The Balkan Wars (1912-1913) and WWI (1914-1918): Shattering Images of Modern Europe.
  • Modern Greek History: Between the Ottoman Empire and the European Union.
  • Cyprus: A Global History.

Recent Publications


  • Of Minotaurs and Minarets: The Story of Autonomous Crete (1898-1912) (book manuscript in progress).
  • Η Λέρος στην Οθωμανική Αυτοκρατορία: Σελίδες από τα Βιβλία της Δημογεροντίας [in Greek: The Island of Leros in the Ottoman Empire through the Books of the Local Elders]. Athens: Filistor Publications, 2005.

Book Chapters and Peer-Reviewed Articles

  • “From Mosque to Mosque: Past and Present Images of Islamic Space in Greece.” Nationalities Papers, The Journal of Nationalism and Ethnicity (forthcoming).
  • “From Crete to Scotland: Autonomy, Secession, Federalization.” Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies (forthcoming).
  • The Multiple Faces of Autonomy: Ottoman Reform and Nineteenth-Century Crete.” In Governmentality and Identities in the Eastern Mediterranean (1880-1920), edited by Socratis Pemezas. Rethymno: Cretan University Press, 2014.
  • “The Minoans, the Ottomans, and the British: Eastern Mediterranean as an Imperial Space.” In The Islands of the Eastern Mediterranean: A History of Cross-cultural Encounters, edited byOzlem Çaykent and Luca Zavagno, 63-89. London: I. B. Tauris, 2013.
  • “Armed Negotiations The Institutionalization of the Late Ottoman Locality.” Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East 33:3 (2013): 295–309.
  • “The Art of Being Replaced: The Last of the Cretan Muslims between the Empire and the Nation-State.” In Religion, Ethnicity and Contested Nationhood in the Former Ottoman Space, edited byJørgen S. Nielsen, 129-147. Leiden: Brill Academic Publishers, 2012.


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