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Grant number like: RZ-50715-07

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Millsaps College (Jackson, MS 39210-0002)
Michael L. Galaty (Project Director: November 2006 to July 2009)

Collaborative Research
Research Programs

$34,000 (approved)
$34,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2007 – 8/31/2008

The Shala Valley Project

Archival research in Istanbul in Turkey, Venice and Rome in Italy, Shkodër and Tirana in Albania, London in the UK, and Washington, DC, to study the history of isolation from outside influences in the Shala River Valley in northern Albania. (13 months)

The Shala Valley Project is an interdisciplinary project focused on the Shala River valley of the northern Albanian high mountains. The project supports programs of ethnographic, historical, archaeological and geoscientific research. Field research was conducted in 2005 and 2006, producing results pertinent to questions about Shala's isolation from regional powers, such as the Venetians and Ottomans, that sought to conquer and control all of Albania. Isolation may have allowed or encouraged the appearance and survival of the tribal system. Tribal politics, a settled, pastoral economy, and feud may have helped Shala maintain its independence, and yet our field data indicate that substantial numbers of people (presumably men) must have emigrated from Shala. This proposal requests funds to support research in state archives in Istanbul, Venice, Rome, Shkoder, Tirana, London, and Washington DC that we hope will produce social and demographic data that can be integrated with our field data.