Posts Tagged ‘announcements’

Conference on Russia and the First World War

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013


The International Center for the History and Sociology of World War II and its Consequences: National Research University Higher School of Economics (Moscow); German Historical Institute (Moscow); and Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum are pleased to announce an international conference on “Russia in the First World War” to be held on 3-5 June 2014 in Moscow, Russia, at the Higher School of Economics.

The conference marks the centenary of the First World War, the “suicide of Europe” that shaped the history of the 20th century. The Russian Empire shared the experiences of other European nations in a war that profoundly affected its economy, social relations, politics and culture. At the same time, in Russia the consequences of war were markedly different. The war launched a series of cataclysmic events, including the collapse of the old regime, the upheaval of February 1917, the Bolsheviks’ rise to power and the bloodshed of the Civil War. For many decades, Russia’s experience in the First World War was overshadowed by the “revolutionary myth” that lent legitimacy to the Soviet state. Only recently, have scholars started to analyze this war on its own account as a crucial event in Russian history, rather than simply as a prelude to the revolution. Russia’s war experience is now studied in its contemporary European context, but also as a political testing ground. Ideologies and practices that emerged in the conditions of the First World War later persisted through the interwar period and found their deadly application during the Second World War.
The conference will bring together scholars of various methodological and national traditions who study Russia’s experience in the First World War. The objectives of the meeting are to share recent research, to expand knowledge and understanding of the country’s participation in the war, and to stimulate further research. Our aim is both to discuss Russia’s particular experience in the war and to contextualize it as a part of broader European conflict. Papers are invited to engage with one or several of the following themes:

  • economic and financial aspects of the warsocial and gender dynamics
  • ethnic cleansings in the rear and on the occupied territories as well as wartime violence against civilians in Russia and other countries (including the Armenian Genocide)
  • history of nationalisms, national movements and the Jewish question
  • Russia’s occupation policy in Galicia and German occupation of Russian imperial territories
  • POW and concentration camps
  • history of wartime diplomacy
  • the role of ideas and ideologies during the war

We also aim to discuss the memory of the First World War as represented in diaries, memoirs, fiction, art and film. Papers that discuss the influence of practices and ideologies of the First World War on the interwar period as well as on the Second World War are particularly welcome. Other topics may also be considered.

This conference is conceived as multidisciplinary, papers are welcome from scholars of Russian history, as well as scholars of other disciplines working in related fields. Both established scholars and advanced graduate students are invited to submit proposals. Conference participants are expected to be currently engaged in research on one of the topics mentioned above. Papers should be previously unpublished and dwell on original research. Papers of the selected participants will be pre-circulated one month in advance to maximize the usefulness of the meeting.

The working languages of the conference will be Russian and English.

The deadline for submitting paper proposals is 15 September 2013. Successful applicants will be notified by 15 October 2013.

Submissions should include (1) name of the applicant, institutional affiliation, postal and electronic addresses; (2) a brief statement explaining how the applicant’s research relates to the study of Russia’s experience in the First World War; (3) a CV; (4) a one-page outline of the paper. Proposals are invited in Russian or English and can be for both individual papers and panels. Proposals should be sent by e-mail to Liudmila G. Novikova

The Higher School of Economics will assist international participants with obtaining Russian visa invitations. Meals (coffee breaks, lunches and a conference dinner) will be provided. As a result of support from a number of sources, including the HSE, the German Historical Institute Moscow, the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies and the Kennan Institute, the organizers have limited funds to cover (partially or in full) participants’ airfare and accommodation costs for the duration of the conference. We ask prospective participants who will need financial assistance to indicate this is their submissions.


New international project on WWI

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

Over the course of three years, the international joint research project 1914-1918-online. International Encyclopedia of the First World War is developing an English-language virtual reference work on the First World War. Planned to be released in 2014, the centenary of the outbreak of World War I, the online encyclopedia will be the result of an international collaborative project to make available a multi-perspective, public-access knowledge base on the First World War. To visit the site-in-progress follow the link above.


Reinforcing the ranks

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

RGWR is pleased to announce the addition of several new members to its project team. Drs. Heather Perry (Associate Professor of History University of North Carolina, Charlotte), Wolfram Dornik (Researcher at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Research on the Consequences of War, Graz, Austria), and Veronika Wendland (Lecturer in History at Justus-Liebig-Universitat in Giessen, Germany and the Herder Institute for Eastern Central European History in Marburg, Germany) have joined the Borderlands editorial board. In addition, Mag. Dr. Hannes Leidinger (Professor of History, University of Austria) has recently agreed to lend his expertise to the project as a member of the RGWR Advisory Committee.


“Little People and Big Wars in Russian History” (Call for Papers)

Friday, November 25th, 2011

Call for Papers  Объявление о приеме заявок (файл в формате pdf)

St. Petersburg Colloquium in Russian History

“Little People and Big Wars in Russian History, mid-19th-mid-20th Centuries”

17-20 June 2013

The St. Petersburg Colloquium in Russian History is an established conference series that takes place every 2-3 years and involves historians from Russia, the U.S.A., and Western Europe. The goal of the 2013 Colloquium is to probe new approaches to the study of individuals and society in wartime Russia.

War has been closely linked to high politics throughout Russian history. Tsars and Party leaders, generals and marshals decided when, how, and against whom to wage war. But how did those who carried the main burden of warfare, regular soldiers and civilians, experience war?

We will try to depart from traditional military history and will focus on ordinary people, rather than on great battles or the games of grand diplomacy. In so doing, our concept of “little people” will remain broad rather than a neatly delineable social category.

Thus questions of violence, masculinity, religion, ethnicity, and medicine move to the fore. How did military technological advances—from trench warfare to air bombardments—impact soldiers’ emotions? What was the role of propaganda and of the new mass media? How did gender roles and stereotypes change in connection not only with the growing importance of rear and “home front” in the 20th century, but also with sexual violence and the mass phenomenon of male disability? What can we say about the influence of military priests, rabbis, and imams on the mental universe of soldiers, on their perception of fighting and death?

The chronological boundaries of the conference encompass the period from roughly the beginning of the Crimean War until the end of the Second World War.

Tentative panels:

1. War and the social imaginary

– Historical memory and the ideology of war.
– The role of propaganda, from kopeck literature to agitational flyers and radio broadcasts. Literature and mass media. War correspondents from Leo Tolstoi to Ilya Ehrenburg.
– Military symbols and rituals from send-offs (provody) to the bestowal of medals. Music, marches, and movement. Drill. Military folklore. Symbolic representations of the enemy.
– Religion as a factor impacting inter-soldier relations, attitudes toward war, fighting, death, etc. The role of military priests, rabbis, and imams.

2. The Individual Perception of War

– The war experience in letters, diaries, and memoirs, in poetry and novels, in music, photography, and the visual arts.
– Emotions. Soldierly fear as a key problem for soldiers, officers, and experts (tacticians, psychiatrists, and psychologists). The role of rumors and their emotional impact during battle. How did military theory configure the ideal emotional make-up of the soldier? Concepts of bravery and cowardice.
– Perceptions of space—from the expanses of the Russian landscape, which formed an influential stereotype from Napoleon to Hitler, to smaller spaces, such as the trenches.
– The impact of military technologies on soldiers’ and civilians’ experience of war.

3. Wartime Everyday Life

– Training: physical and mental preparation for the fact that soldiers during war become subjects and objects of violence.
– Links between practices of violence and the revolutionary movement in war. Sexual violence. Ethnic violence (e.g. pogroms). World War Two and the Holocaust.
– The everyday in times of war. The blurring of boundaries between soldiers and civilians.
– Epidemics in peacetime and wartime. Ethno-medical stereotypes (self-mutilation as a “Jewish disease”). Disability and the psychomedical consequences of war. The Red Cross and voluntary associations, Sisters of Mercy, etc.
– Conscription and the medical state of the nation, demographic history.
– Deviant behavior. Military psychiatry.

4. War and Identity

– Ethnic identity and interethnic wartime relations. The perception of the ethnic factor among generals, the officer corps, and, in Soviet times, among commissars. Ethnic cleansing during the First World War.
– Gender. Masculinity and war. Male and female warriors. Soldiers’ wives (soldatki). Gendered representations of the nation, from the Empress during World War One to Rodina-mat’ in World War Two.

We are looking for papers based on original archival and ethnographic research from specialists in history, literary studies, cultural anthropology, sociology, the history of science, religious history, film and media studies, and visual studies. We very much welcome interdisciplinary approaches. We will not consider published materials or texts currently under consideration for publication.

Organizational Information

The Colloquium, organized by the St. Petersburg Institute for History of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin, will take place 17-20 June 2013. We will pay for travel and accommodation in St. Petersburg.

Please send your abstracts to Abstracts must contain your email address, your affiliation, a tentative title for your paper, and a short (no longer than 500 words) précis of this paper.

Deadline for submission of abstracts: 1 June 2012. We will inform you of the selection of participants by 30 September 2012.

Invited paper-givers should submit an electronic version of their paper no longer than 40,000 signs (including spaces and notes) by 1 March 2013. Papers will be pre-circulated and not read at the colloquium. At the colloquium each participant has 5-10 minutes to present the main ideas of her or his paper. There will be a comment on each panel, followed by discussion.

Conference language: Russian.

After the Colloquium authors are expected to revise their papers for publication. We plan a publication of the volume of papers and the comments and discussions in 2013.

Co-chairs of the Organizing Committee:

Nikolai Mikhailov, St. Petersburg Institute of History, Russian Academy of Sciences (

Jan Plamper, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin (


Slavica Publishers to produce RGWR volumes

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

The project mangers and general editors of Russia’s Great War and Revolution are pleased to announce that they have recently concluded negotiations with Slavica Publishers for the production and sale of the RGWR series of edited volumes.

A division of Indiana University since 1997, Slavica is the leading U.S. press specializing in the publication of scholarly monographs, textbooks, and other works devoted to Slavic and East European Studies and the field of Slavic Languages and Literatures. In addition to its highly regarded booklists, Slavica is home to a number of academic journals including the leading interdisciplinary quarterly Kritika: Exploration in Russian and Eurasian History.

Under the terms of the agreement, Slavica will publish each of the RGWR series’ volumes covering six broad themes: 1. Military affairs; 2. Borderlands and conflict; 3. International affairs; 4. Home Front; 5. Empire (including Siberia and the Far East); 6. Culture. At present, project managers estimate that the series will encompass a total of seventeen individual books.

To ensure the widest possible availability all books in the RGWR series will be sold in affordable paperback editions as well as in electronic form. Each chapter appearing in the series will also be available for individual e-purchase through the online database Project Muse.

At present, project managers expect the first RGWR volume to appear in late 2013 with the last books in the series targeted for publication in 2016 or 2017.