My name is Chris Davis. I am an Oxford doctorate student in the faculty of Modern History. I dwell in Bucharest, where I research and write on Romanian history and society.

no, the notion of ‘Bucharest Babylon’ is taken from a 19th-century travel writer from Transylvania, who upon making his way to Bucharest and writing home to his parents, described the place as Babylon.
mark adams
9/7/09 4:14
meaning ‘debauched’?
Chris Davis
9/7/09 4:15
historically, it was ruled by Greek Phanariots, with lots of Armenians, Jews, Hungarians, other Greeks, Aromanians, Albanians…
9/7/09 4:15
and like so many other urban places in this part of Europe, it became ethnically homogenized.
9/7/09 4:16
so, i’m trying to recapture that image or notion… an kinda beneath-the-layers perspective.
9/7/09 4:17
esp now that there are so many ex-pats here, and so much brought back from western Europe by Romanians who’ve been traveling and working abroad.

The phrase “Bucharest Babylon / București Babilonul” is taken from the impressions of a 19th-century traveler and writer from Transylvania, Ion Codru-Drăgușanu. Upon arriving in Bucharest from Habsburg Transylvania, Dragușanu wrote home to his parents, describing this polyglot city as kind of Babylon – as much Greek, Armenian, Jewish, Aromanian as anything else. (Supposedly, there’s also an interwar-era novel of the same title, by Radu Cosmin. I’ve yet to find it.)

My aim, however contrived, is to recapture this spirit or notion from of beneath-the-layers perspective, to see the city as a kind of palimpsest, with its overlays of cultures, peoples, eras. Leastways, it is a record of my life, loves, and times here.


2 responses to “About

  1. Marco Amaro

    Hell’s to the yeah! Bring it! Some Accelerat experiences…some mici, Ciuc Beer, guys named Istvan or Ianut, girls named Reko or Ana. Oh…lets not forget bars named Bunker. And more and more…and so much more…

  2. Missy G

    Hey Chris, it’s been a very, very long time my friend. Just saw this on your LinkedIn profile and am thoroughly impressed that you kept after the higher learning pursuits – and that’s a great pic of you! If you’re ever in NYC give me a buzz so we can grab drinks and catch up.

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