Modern historical scholarship has always accepted, more or less suspiciously, the stories of the arrival of the Croats, and more generally, the arrival of the Slavs in post-Roman Illyricum in the treatise De administrando imperio, as codified reflections of historical realities. Criticised and praised, they have never been fully rejected. The stories of Constantine Porphyrogenitus simply appear too good to be rejected, taking into account the lack of written sources which deal with this region between the 7th and 9th centuries. Therefore, it is not surprising that generations of archaeologists and historians have put valiant efforts in order to “prove” and “illustrate” them in the positivist framework. However, analysis of the narratives reveals Constantine’s stories of the Croat arrival as nothing but a hi-stories, pseudohistorical narrative constructions, based upon historical memories manipulated through oral tradition by certain social groups from the region. These were inserted into the manual on foreign politics and geography, which was developed in the framework of Byzantine high culture of the 10th century. We cannot claim that there is no historical reality in those hi-stories of the arrival from the DAI. Unfortunately, it is even more difficult on the basis of the existing sources to claim that one might have a key for their deciphering and distillation from the identity- and narrative-discourses and memories of the past, in which are they embedded.
|Translated title of the contribution||Telling the stories: ideological-narrative discourses on the Croat migrations in De administrando imperio|
|Number of pages||13|
|Journal||Radovi Zavoda za Hrvatsku Povijest|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|
- De administrando imperio