«Un poste consulaire en Macédoine, Bitola-Monastir, 1851-1912», Cahiers Balkaniques 38-39 (2011), p. 127-148.
The article attempts to restore, starting with the consular archives of the Macedonian city of Bitola, between 1851 and 1912, a social and cultural reality of Macedonia, less filtered by the national ideologies than that which translates the internal documentation into Balkan languages. The greatest part of the information furnished by the consular correspondences derives from drogmans, interpretors assuring the interface between the local Ottoman authorities and the consuls, but the consuls also inform one another. Starting in the 1890s, the political questions detrone the economic interests. Even if the Macedonian historians of Bitola underline the modernising role of the consuls, the consular corps is too restricted and turned in on itself to be able to exercise a significant influence. The article analyses the political action of the different consulates. Those of the Balkan states organise the subversion of Ottoman power, those of Austria-Hungary and Russia, having immediate interests in the Balkan area, intervene in local affairs, officially or secretly, while the role of those of Great Britain, Italy and France is to maintain this country’s Great Power status.
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