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The Case of Twentieth-Century Southeastern Europe
Twentieth-century Southeastern Europe endured three, separate decades of international and civil war, and was marred in forced migration and wrenching systematic changes. This book is the result of a year-long project by the Open Society Institute to examine and reappraise this tumultuous century. A cohort of young scholars with backgrounds in history, anthropology, political science, and comparative literature were brought together for this undertaking. The studies invite attention to fascism, socialism, and liberalism as well as nationalism and Communism. While most chapters deal with war and confrontation, they focus rather on the remembrance of such conflicts in shaping today's ideology and national identity.
The Role of Aesthetic Imagination in Human Society
Literature is defined in a challenging way as the "science" of imperfection and defeat, or else as a type of discourse that deals with defeat, loss, uncertainty in social life, by contrast with virtually all disciplines (hard sciences or social sciences) that affirm certainties and wish to convince us of truths. If in real history most constructive attempts end up in failure, it follows that we ought to have also a field of research that examines this diversity of failures and disappointments, as well as the alternative options to historical evolution and progress. Thus literature serves an indispensable role: that of gleaning the abundance of past existence, the gratuitous and the rejected being placed here on an equal level with the useful and the successful. This provocative and unusual approach is illustrated in chapters that deal with the dialectics between literary writing and such fields as historical writing, or religious discourses, and is also illustrated by the socio-historical development of East-Central Europe.
Renowned academics compare major features of imperial rule in the 19th century, reflecting a significant shift away from nationalism and toward empires in the studies of state building. The book responds to the current interest in multi-unit formations, such as the European Union and the expanded outreach of the United States.
The History of Russian-Jewish Prose, 1860–1940
The first concise history of Russian-Jewish literary prose, this book discusses Russian-Jewish literarature in four periods, analyzing the turning points (1881–82, 1897, 1917) and proposing that the selected epoch (1860–1940) represents a special strand that was unfairly left out of both Russian and Jewish national literatures. Based on theoretical sources on the subject, the book establishes the criteria of dual cultural affiliation, and in a survey of Russian-Jewish literature presents the pitfalls of assimilation and discusses different forms of anti-Semitism. After showing the oeuvre of 18 representative authors as a whole, the book analyzes a number of characteristic novels and short stories in terms of contemporary literary studies. Many texts discussed have not been reprinted since their first publication. The material offers indispensable information not only for comparative and literary studies but for multicultural, historical, ethnographic, Judaist, religious and linguistic investigations as well.
Serology in Interwar and National Socialist Germany
Explores the course of development of German seroanthropology from its origins in World War I until the end of the Third Reich. Gives an all encompassing interpretation of how the discovery of blood groups in around 1900 galvanised not only old mythologies of blood and origin but also new developments in anthropology and eugenics in the 1920s and 1930s. Boaz portrays how the personal motivations of blood scientists influenced their professional research, ultimately demonstrating how conceptually indeterminate and politically volatile the science of race was under the Nazi regime.
The National Committee for a Free Europe – which at one point changed its name to Free Europe Committee – was a US government sponsored organization between 1949 and 1971. Its mission was to wage “organized political warfare” against Soviet Expansionism, with Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty as the two most well known divisions. The NCFE and its anti-communist campaign remains one of the last aspects of U.S. Cold War policy that has not been thoroughly researched, and Cold War scholarship will not be complete until this history is made available. The essays in this book discuss the Bulgarian, Czechoslovakian, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian and Baltic States national committees, which were formed to lead the propaganda battle against the growth of world-wide communism, and which represented the U.S.-based exile leadership of those satellite nations. The primary sources of this research were the archival records of the two radio divisions, acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives at Stanford University in 2000.
Lessons from the History of the Euro
The book seeks to link theoretical debates on the relevance of trust in economic outcomes with the current arguments about the origins and lessons of the subprime crisis. By what mechanisms does trust influence economic outcomes? Under what conditions do these mechanisms prevail? How do debates about trust help our understanding of the subprime crisis in the European Union? By integrating insights from Post-Keynesian, Austrian and new institutional economics, the central proposition of the analysis is that the presence or absence of institutional trust creates virtuous and vicious cycles in law-abiding, which critically influence the possibility for economic agents to have realistic long-term plans. In a low-trust environment the uncertainty surrounding the functioning of institutions leads to short-term decisions. Political business cycles, lax regulations on credit and boom-bust cycles are typical of such an environment. While empirical evidence from the EU largely supports these propositions, important exceptions are also identified and the conditions for the theory noted–including financial market influences, fashions in economic theory as well as political leadership.
Between Divine Message and History
Why this book? What can it add to the many works that have already explored Islam as a history, a doctrine, a law, and a code of ethics? The bulk of Islamic thought nowadays is either a repetition of and rumination about what the ancients have already said, or the tackling of partial issues that falls short of a comprehensive view and a theoretical framework. All too often ideology replaces real knowledge. This work attempts to introduce the characteristics of the Mohammedan Mission, with the aspiration to be faithful to its essential purposes and to historical truth at the same time. The author thus illustrates the different ways in which people have understood the Mission and the reasons that led them to those various interpretations. The book presents several alternative interpretations that actually existed but did not enjoy widespread acceptance and popularity.
Focuses specifically on the concept and role of islands in the medieval world. The main characteristic of an island is, of course, that of being isolated from the rest of the world; in geography by waters, in more abstract and symbolic meanings by other kinds of separating borders. Islands were the place ‘on the other side’, of difference, otherness and remoteness. As one of the articles in this volume puts it, islands are often depicted “as sites for extraordinary events and happenings”.