Focusing on the Mediterranean as a historical concept (as opposed to a strictly geographical one) was was the brainchild of one of the pioneers of ‘total’ history, Fernand Braudel, French historian and one of the most prominent members of the second generation of the Annales school.

In the decades since the publication of his seminal work La Méditerranée et le Monde Méditerranéen à l’Epoque de Philippe II the concept has been employed by ancient historians, medievalists, early modernists and even anthropologists, and has now spawned a French research programme planning to stretch to no less than eight conferences. Papers from the third of these have now been gathered together in an epic multi-lingual tome Le monde de l’Itinérance and a review of this by one of the masters of Mediterranean history, Peregrine Horden, can be found here, along with a response from the editors.