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Balkan Legacies: A Q&A with Balázs Apor and John Paul Newman

Balkan Legacies: A Q&A with Balázs Apor and John Paul Newman

June 7th, 2021

We talked to Balázs Apor and John Paul Newman, the editors of Balkan Legacies: The Long Shadow of Conflict and Ideological Experiment in Southeastern Europe.

Balkan Legacies is a study of the aftermath of war and state socialism in the contemporary Balkans. The authors look at the inescapable inheritances of the recent past and those that the present has to deal with.


Q: What was your main motivation for starting this project as editors?

Balázs Apor: The book was the product of a conference in Dublin that addressed the broad themes of memory and identity in Central and Eastern Europe. The conference had several excellent papers that focused on Southeastern Europe and reflected on very similar themes: the legacies of war and communism in the region. It seemed to us like an obvious decision to bring those papers together in a volume in which these issues are analyzed more systematically. We also wanted to offer a comprehensive coverage of the region, so we invited additional experts to contribute. We felt that academic publications on historical legacies in the Balkans either focus on the legacy of wars or the legacy of the communist dictatorship, but they rarely address the two jointly. The primary motivation behind the volume is to offer a joint discussion of the two formative legacies of the 20th Century in the Balkans and explore how they interact with each other.

John Paul Newman: It is exactly as Balazs says – we had organized this large conference in Dublin, and in the aftermath sat down together in a pub and discussed what impressed us about the many papers that we had heard. It was clear that there was some excellent work by established and early career scholars on the many aftermaths of conflict and socialism in the region. It was also clear to us that there existed a kind of Gordian memory knot: that people had certain ideas and attitudes about war, and the Second World War especially, and that people also had a set of ideas and attitudes about socialism – that these attitudes were often entangled, conflicting, and that if we addressed these together we might learn something about the contemporary history of the region. That is what we have set out to do in the book.

 

Q: This volume is titled Balkan Legacies, and you make effort in the introduction of the book to talk about the concept of “legacy” and why you’re exploring it, could you explain that some here?

Apor: The concept of “legacy” is an elusive one. It is used very often in academic discussions, but its meaning is often left vague. There are very few attempts to define what “historical legacy” actually means and how can scholars study them. Our goal with the book was to tap into the literature on historical legacies and offer a contribution to academic debates on the term. In our interpretation, legacies denote structures, ideas, trends, themes, and so on, that revive or endure after radical breaks in history. We also argue for the importance of studying different legacies jointly in order to be able to appreciate the myriad of ways in which they interact with each other. The recent history of Southeastern Europe – or the Balkans – is probably the best case to illustrate this point. The legacies of wars and dictatorships (communist or otherwise) fundamentally shaped social and political developments in the Balkans in the past century and they continue to exert an influence on contemporary societies.

Newman: I suppose we liked the way the idea of ‘legacies’ suggested deeper historical and institutional inheritances. Deeper, that is, than the usual ideas about the past that are articulated in the public sphere in Southeastern Europe. Here, war and socialism are of course extremely important topics, hot button issues in politics, culture, the media, as many of our contributors point out. But often what is said in public is at odds with the historical reality: present-day politicians, for example, are quick to disavow the socialist period in toto, to claim that the period was a parenthetical departure from the true course of the nation, or to claim that if there are still vestiges, this has to do with an ‘unfinished revolution’ that they and they alone can bring to completion. This is a far too common and far too superficial way of interpreting the past, and part of the choice behind the legacies concept was to show another way of thinking about these important issues.

 

BALKAN LEGACIES is available June 15, 2021.

 

Q: You also mention the effects of both long-lasting legacies (institutions, policies, behaviors, and attitudes) and short-term events (revolutions, wars, and violent coups d’état) on societies and legacies. What makes this volume’s take on this somewhat novel?

Apor: In the literature on historical legacies there is a tendency to focus on structures, institutions and long-term developments or phenomena. We argue that short-term events, including revolutions and wars may produce equally significant and enduring legacies. The book contains a healthy balance of case studies focusing on the legacies of short-terms events (wars) and chapters discussing the legacies of enduring structures (dictatorships). The collection of essays should provide the reader with an insight into how different types of legacies function and how they interact with each other.

Newman: Braudel and the doyens of the Annales School would be turning in their grave! But it is true: so many studies of Southeastern Europe have thought in terms of long-term economic, social, and cultural development, and related many of these to the legacies of the Ottoman empire. Of course the Ottoman empire is central to the history of the region, just as it is central to Europe more generally (and to North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia). But we also wanted to show that the complex legacies of more recent conflict and political projects were also central to the way Southeast European societies have taken shape in the 21st century. One of our points of departure was Tony Judt’s opus of European history since the end of the Second World War ‘Postwar’, in which he argues that the shadow of that conflict remained over Europe throughout the Cold War and beyond. We wanted to try to push that premise further in Southeastern Europe, asking that, if this was true, how would it manifest in a region that experienced civil conflict, invasion, occupation, revolution, in the course of these years.

 

Q: How is this volume organized and what are some of the specific subjects covered?

Apor: The volume consists of five thematic parts. The first part contains chapters reflecting on the legacies of wars with an emphasis on the legacy of World War II in Croatian nation-building, the use of the hajduk tradition in Serbian politics at the time of the Yugoslav succession wars, and the Civil War in Greece. The second and third parts of the book collect chapters addressing the legacies of communism. Part 2 focuses primarily on the political sphere in Romania, Albania and Bulgaria whereas the emphasis in Part 3 is on everyday practices and objects (holidays, song contests and Tito memorabilia) that often evoke nostalgic sentiments in present-day societies. Part 4 highlights the role of non-communist legacies in the Balkans with case studies reflecting on monarchical legacies in Bulgaria, the antiquisation campaign in Macedonia, and the importance of (purged) books in attempts to create a usable past in Croatia. The last part of the book focuses on the legacies of war and communism in minority groups, such as diaspora and ethnic minority communities, and disabled people.

Newman: I remember that this was one of the hardest parts of editing this book. We had such an amazing range of scholars, approaching our central questions from such a range of disciplines, and with such a range of topics, too. It was on us as editors to craft this into a thematically coherent book. I hope we have achieved this!

 

Q: What do you want someone reading of to leave with a better understanding of, or, what is the main goal of this project?

Apor: The main goal of this project is to highlight the complexity of historical legacies in the Balkans. Legacies may be short-term or longer-term, they may be invisible and un-reflected and they often interact with each other in a multiplicity of ways.

Newman: Obviously I hope the reader will understand that war and socialism have left important and enduring legacies on the region! But I hope they will understand that this has not happened monolithically, that societies are experiencing these legacies in very different ways, depending on a range of intersectional variables, geography, age, gender, race, religion, and so on. I hope too that, if they didn’t know this plain fact before, they will understand something of the social and cultural vibrancy of the region. Perhaps the reader will be introduced to the ideas and the work of scholars they had not known about before.


Thank you to Balázs Apor and John Paul Newman! If you would like to know more about this book you can order your own copy or request it from your local library.

You can get 30% off this title and any other order by entering the code PURDUE30 when ordering from our website.


On Many Routes: A Q&A with Annemarie Steidl

December 7th, 2020

We talked to Annemarie Steidl, the author of On Many Routes: Internal, European, and Transatlantic Migration in the Late Habsburg Empire.

On Many Routes is about the history of human migration. With a focus on the Habsburg Empire, this innovative work presents an integrated and creative study of spatial mobilities: from short to long term, and intranational and inter-European to transatlantic.


Q: What is the main goal of this project, and what motivated you to write it?

Annemarie Steidl: The main goal of the book is to contextualize transatlantic migrations from the Habsburg Empire to the United States of America before World War I with the high spatial mobility in the Habsburg Empire to other European regions. Up to five million people from Late Imperial Austria and the kingdom of Hungary went overseas. However, more Austrian and Hungarian nationals moved from western parts of the kingdom to Lower Austria or from the province of Galicia to the grain fields in the German Reich.

I started the yearlong project with an analysis of transatlantic ship passenger manifests from the Norddeutsche Lloyd in Bremen and from the Hamburg America Line. During the research it became obvious that the route to the Americas was only one of various migration routes that people from Austria-Hungary took during the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries.

Q: How did you define “migration” and why did you make this distinction?

Steidl: In this book I define migration in its widest sense. This includes all changes of residence irrespective of distance moved or duration of any given stay. A broad definition of migration is one that includes all permanent or semi-permanent changes of residence with no restriction on distance moved. It can describe short-term and permanent changes of residence, as well as patterns of seasonal, circular, or permanent mobility, such as vagrants or traveling people. The term “migration” is applied to international and administrative border crossings, as well as short-distance and transoceanic movements.

Modern territorial states and their bureaucracies create categories like internal and international migration, because administrators need of clear guidelines by which to classify migrants in order to document, tally, and ultimately officially manage these individuals. These administrative classification systems not only obscure the complex daily practices that comprise migration, but diminish the term migration itself by defining it in terms of the state. In order to overcome nationally confined approaches, we have to plead for an open and integrative definition of migration that allows for the incorporation of international and continental as well as temporary movements like seasonal migrations within rural regions, the movement of agricultural servants from villages to towns, and those of traveling artisans and highly mobile soldiers during wartime. New approaches call for an integration of mobility studies concepts and migration research, which would help to loosen strong current associations between the term migration and nation-state logic. This can broaden our understanding of spatial mobility as a fundamental aspect of social life.

 

 

Q: Are there any common misconceptions about migration in this area that you were able to dispel? Or shed a more clear light on?

Steidl: Traditional research on transatlantic migration from the Habsburg Empire most often only focused on one direction – from the empire to overseas – and broadly neglected high mobility rates. Studies on spatial mobility within Imperial Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary, as well as seasonal migrations to the German Empire, Switzerland, or the Romanian Kingdom, were not studied with the transcontinental moves. However, a local study of migration patterns of people from Vorarlberg, the westernmost part of Imperial Austria, gives a clearer picture of these dynamics. Since the late sixteenth century people from the Bregenzerwald and Montafon travelled to German speaking areas in the Southwest, like Alsace Lorrain and as far as Paris, France, mostly as temporary construction workers. These people were well connected, with information networks in the German and French speaking world. In addition, Vorarlberg’s textile production was part of a greater network in Switzerland around St. Gallen. Weavers and their families used to move back and forth within this greater region. It is no surprise that Vorarlbergers were among the first to leave for the new continent through French Harbors in the first half of the nineteenth century, as they already had migration experiences within families and circles of friends.

Traditional migration experiences increased the likelihood of transatlantic migration during the nineteenth century, while other traditions of spatial mobility coexisted. Mobility rates were already high before new transportation and communication technologies were introduced during industrialization. The building of railroads, increased use of steamships, stable communication with regions overseas through mail, and bank services contributed to the enormous growth of transatlantic mobility rates since the 1880s. During the second half of the nineteenth century Vorarlberg’s textile production flourished and provided many jobs for Italian speaking women and men from Trento and other northern Italian regions across the border. While we saw an in-migration from other Habsburg Provinces and the Kingdom of Italy, Vorarlberg’s textile entrepreneurs moved whole factories overseas to New York and New Jersey, taking many of their laborers with them. Vorarlberg was neither a region of emigration nor immigration, rather a province with a high turnover, with people coming and going.

In the last decades before World War I, most Habsburg transatlantic migrants originated from economically weaker provinces such as Galicia, the northwestern areas of the Hungarian Kingdom, and Mediterranean coastal regions in the south of the empire. Due to this most historical research focused on economic distress as the main cause for leaving one’s home country. However, as is the case in Vorarlberg and other prosperous regions of the Habsburg Empire, people more often left for chances in the United States labor market rather than because of abject poverty. These men and women were attracted to America by an incredibly fast-growing economy, new opportunities: cheap land and well-paid jobs in heavy industry, mines, and urban factories.

Q: Why study migration in this manner? What does it tell us about these people?

Steidl: This book deals with a lot of numbers and its analysis is mostly based on statistical data: population censuses in Late Imperial Austria, the Kingdom of Hungary, and the United States of America, ship passenger manifests from the Norddeutsche Lloyd and the Hamburg America Line, as well as local surveys on spatially mobile people. The Habsburg Empire stretched over more than 676,600 square kilometers and, in 1910, housed more than 51 million people who spoke more than ten official languages, followed different denominations and religions, were part of different social classes, and inhabited economically heterogeneous provinces, counties, and smaller regions. The intention of the mostly macro-level focus and quantitative methodical approach was to link migrations of all Habsburg regions to economic, social, and cultural characteristics. This way, I was able to cultivate a more complete understanding of the timing, selectivity, and nature of various migration patterns. I am well aware that this is a rather poor substitute for everyday practices of people living and migrating in the Habsburg Empire. Whenever possible, statistical result will be illustrated by local and individual examples. However, even this flawed evidence offers indication of the extent to which individuals were mobile in the past and that migration was a common experience for a large portion of the population in Late Imperial Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary. Some questions can only be answered by numbers.


Thank you to Annemarie! If you would like to know more about this book you can get your own copy or request it from your local library.

You can get 30% off these titles and any other Purdue University Press book by entering the code PURDUE30 when ordering from our website.


Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism: Q&A with Mate Nikola Tokić

July 6th, 2020

We talked to Mate Nikola Tokić, the author of Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism During the Cold War.

Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism During the Cold War examines one of the most active but least remembered groups of terrorists of the Cold War: radical anti-Yugoslav Croatian separatists. At its core, this book is concerned with the discourses and practices of radicalization—the ways in which both individuals and groups who engage in terrorism construct a particular image of the world to justify their actions.


 

Q: What is the goal of your book? What motivated you to write it?

Mate Nikola Tokić: Like many projects, my initial interest in exploring the history found in Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism During the Cold War actually arose from something of a chance encounter. During archival research for my doctoral dissertation, I happened upon a quote from socialist Yugoslavia’s leader Josip Broz Tito where he stated that Croatian terrorism posed an existential threat to the country. The document I was reading had nothing to do with the subject, and the quote was actually a throw-away line, made to emphasize a quite different point. Nevertheless, I was struck by the observation. I had long been aware of the terror campaign Croat emigrants waged against socialist Yugoslavia during the Cold War, but had always seen the violence as more or less insignificant and little more than a nuisance to the Yugoslav regime. The comment by Tito, however, suggested a more complex story. Once I completed my doctoral thesis, I had the opportunity to follow up on the reference, and soon discovered an intricate and fascinating history that had hitherto been neglected in historiography. And the deeper I dug, the more intricate and fascinating the history became. First and foremost, my motivation for writing the book was bringing this history and its many entanglements to light.

 

Q: Why do you think this part of history was relatively overlooked?

Tokić: In many ways, it remains a surprise to me that this history has thus far been mostly ignored in academia.  But I think there are some clear reasons for this.  In terms of Yugoslav historiography, clearly the focus for many years has been on the country’s violent break-up.  Scholars have had to struggle with contending why a country that so long was touted as a success story ultimately collapsed so acrimoniously.   As interesting as the story I explore is, it is understandable that historians and others would focus on the causes and context of arguably Europe’s worst tragedy since World War II.  In terms of the history of political violence and terrorism, in part the issue relates to the degree to which radical Croatian separatists were able to keep their cause in the spotlight.  In short, they were unable to, or at least not to the degree better remembered groups of the era such as the RAF, Brigate Rosse, PLO, or ETA did.  For numerous reasons, Croatian separatists rarely landed on the front page of newspapers the world over despite having been as active or even more so than these other groups.  Over time, this has led them to fall into relative obscurity.

 

Picture of the book Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism During the Cold War

 

Q: You start the introduction of the book by acknowledging that many would like us to believe our current “age of terror” is unprecedented. How could your book help us understand modern terror more?

Tokić: In many ways, my desire to challenge prevailing claims about the unprecedented nature of contemporary terrorism has less to do with furthering our understanding of political violence itself and more to do with understanding how political violence and terrorism have been politicized in current politics and society. From its very inception, modern terrorism has been as much about labels and symbolic politics as it has been about social, political, economic, and cultural change. The rather hackneyed phrase “one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”—to give just the most obvious example—puts this into sharp relief. A striking feature of both state and media responses to contemporary terrorism has been how ahistoricized their treatment of the phenomenon has been. The result of this, in my view, has been that our understanding of the genesis and aim of terrorism as political act in contemporary world politics lacks sufficient context. The point of the book is less that we learn from the past in order not to repeat it (to paraphrase George Santayana’s famous quote) and more simply to help create a more complete framework for how to think about pressing issues of the day, in this case the relationship between migration and radicalization. Despite its rather narrow empirical focus, ultimately the aim of the book is to provide new insights and perspectives on how to think about the link between population flows and political violence. From this, we can not only understand modern terrorism better, but more critically reflect upon how best to respond to that terrorism.

 

Q: Where there any particularly surprising or interesting things you found when researching?

Tokić: I’m not sure that I would say that it was particularly surprising, but one thing that definitely struck me was how little the state security services of various countries either knew about or understood radical Croatian separatist groups.  There is, I believe, a general belief that intelligence agencies are generally efficient and effective, if not in fact omniscient.  This notion has developed through both popular culture and state efforts to propagate the idea that their security services are resourceful and competent.  From what I was able to see of classified and top-secret documents (which of course was limited) it is clear that not only did the intelligence agencies have little idea about the organization and activities of radical groups, what they did know they often misunderstood.  This is not to say, of course, that security services were completely ignorant or blind to the threat posed by extremist organizations in their countries.  Rather, like any governmental bureaucracy or agency they were hampered by a variety of ideological, partisan, financial, administrative, and even managerial limitations and shortcomings.  The end result was an understanding of radical groups that was often at best imperfect, if not outright distorted.

 


You can get 30% off Croatian Radical Separatism and Diaspora Terrorism During the Cold War and any other Purdue University Press book by ordering from our website and using the code PURDUE30 at checkout.


Teaching the Empire: A Q&A with Scott O. Moore

May 20th, 2020

We talked to Scott O. Moore, an assistant professor of history at Eastern Connecticut State University and author of Teaching the Empire: Education and State Loyalty in Late Habsburg Austria.

Teaching the Empire explores how Habsburg Austria utilized education to cultivate the patriotism of its people.


 

Q: What got you interested in studying and writing about civic education in Late Habsburg Austria?

Scott O. Moore: I’ve always been fascinated by the issue of identity – how people think about themselves and others. This interest is part of the reason why I’ve always been attracted to the history of the Habsburg Monarchy. It was such a diverse country, and culturally it was defined by forces pulling its people together, but also pulling them apart. Because of the Monarchy’s collapse after World War I, historians have usually focused on the things that diminished the cohesion of Habsburg society. There has also been an enormous amount of interest in the development of national and ethnic identity, but not so much the development of a Habsburg or Austrian. Because of these trends, I thought it would be interesting to look at what was tying the Monarchy’s citizens together. That led me to look at civic education. I wanted to explore the way institutions, like schools, helped create a sense of cohesion and “togetherness” among the Monarchy’s population, even when that population spoke different languages, followed different religions, or adhered to different cultural customs.

 

Q: What was unique about Habsburg Austria’s system of civic education?

Moore: One of the most interesting things I discovered in my research is how similar Habsburg civic education was to its neighbors. Because the Monarchy was a multinational state, there has always been an assumption that it couldn’t develop civic education in the same way its more ethnically homogeneous neighbors did. The thought was that without language and culture to tie people together, it would be harder to make them share common heroes, a common view of their history, or share common values. I discovered the opposite. Like other European countries and the US, Habsburg Austria consciously used schools to teach a common, patriotic version of the past. It used holidays and public celebrations to enhance a sense of belonging. It also utilized all the tools of the modern state to achieve these goals. Habsburg civic education was a consciously crafted, well-engineered process. What was unique, of course, was that officials attempted to reach these goals in a multinational state, where they couldn’t rely on a common language or culture. Because of this, the teaching of things like history and civic values actually became more important. Habsburg officials wanted students to realize that even if their neighbors spoke a different language, everyone was bound by a common, shared history, that everyone who lived in Austria shared the common goal of making the state strong, that everyone had a common purpose.

 

Q: Do you feel there is a comparable civic education system now?

Moore: If you look at schools in the US, I think we can see the legacy of traditional civic education. We still use holidays, like President’s Day or the Fourth of July, to enhance the patriotism of students; we still teach civics and government with the hope of making well-informed citizens; and many would argue (much to the frustration of many professional historians) that teaching history in schools is a patriotic exercise. Obviously there are considerable differences, but I think that public schools still share many of the missions they had when they were created in the 19th century. That said, as Europe and the United States become increasingly diverse, I think that policy makers could learn from exploring the history of the Habsburg Monarchy. Prior to World War I, it was the only European state that embraced a multi-national, multi-ethnic identity, challenging the notion that linguistic or cultural unity was the best way to forge a sense of community.

 


Thank you so much to Scott for his time! If you would like to know more about the book you can get your own copy or request it from your local library.

You can get 40% off Teaching the Empire and any other Purdue University Press book by ordering from our website and using the code PURDUE40 at checkout.


Who was Jan Hus? – A Q&A with author Pavel Soukup

December 6th, 2019

We talked with author Pavel Soukup about his book with Purdue University Press, Jan Hus: The Life and Death of a Preacher.

The book records the life of medieval Czech university master and popular preacher Jan Hus, who was one of medieval Europe’s most prominent reformers.

 


 

Q: Who was Jan Hus?

Pavel Soukup: Jan Hus was a late medieval Czech university master and popular preacher in Prague, an adherent of the teachings of the English thinker John Wyclif, and a proponent of Church reform. Through his dedicated pursuit of what he understood as his mission, this medieval intellectual generated conflict, and eventually brought execution upon himself. In 1415, he was condemned at the Council of Constance and burned at the stake as a heretic. Thanks to his contemporary influence and his posthumous fame in the Hussite movement and beyond, Hus has become one of the best known figures of the Czech past, and one of the most prominent reformers of medieval Europe as a whole.

 

Q: It must provide a challenge to write about someone with the notoriety of Hus. Was there anything new you intended on adding to the conversation around him?

The publication date for “Jan Hus: The Life and Death of a Preacher” is December 15

Soukup: The new facts I was able to add Hus’s biography are rather detailed findings that matter mostly to specialists. More important was my ambition to provide a comparative perspective on Hus. I did not want to see him as a titan with no peer, but rather as a member of a large group of reform-minded medieval intellectuals. What puzzles us is the fact that many of these reformers belonged to Hus’s opponents and some most prominent of them were among the judges who sent him to death. It is only through comparing their grounds, aims and approaches, that we can understand the religious split and the emergence of the Hussite dissent. While much work remains to be done, my book identifies the key areas in which this comparison should be done, and provides answers to the question of why an ecclesiastical reformer was condemned by a reform church council.

 

Q: Why did you choose to write about Jan Hus now?

Soukup: The book was written upon request by the German publisher of the original version. Otherwise, I would not think of writing about a person of such prominence in Czech historical research and public debate. Nevertheless, I accepted the invitation immediately. I understood it as both a chance and a challenge. Writing about Hus, one finds himself part of a long and venerable tradition. Czech patriotic discourse always spoke about Hus in impassioned, affected language. Today, big words like ‘truth’ and ‘martyrdom’ make us somewhat bashful. While literature on Hus certainly needs more sober language, the central themes of Hus’s story remain topical. Hus had to make hard choices facing repressive institutions, and the former Czech president Václav Havel had a point when he emphasized the principal of individual responsibility that cannot be delegated to anyone else.

 

Q: You say that the central themes of Hus’s life remain topical. What are some of these main themes?

Soukup: Jan Hus is often seen as someone who chose death instead of betraying the truth. This stance might be questioned by pointing to the subjectivity of personal convictions, especially when they are rooted in religious beliefs. Yet it is precisely these days, in the age of disinformation, that we need to care again about truth and reliability. Another theme crucial for grasping Hus is his public activity which led to the emergence of a group of determined followers who, not much later, started a religious revolution. I devoted the key chapters of the book to communication, media, and propaganda, as well as to preaching and political networking of Hus. Given the importance of communication networks and social media in today’s world, I believe that the social impact of communicative behavior represents a highly relevant topic of cultural-historical studies.

 


 

You can get 50% off Jan Hus during our Central European Studies Sale, just enter discount code CES50 when ordering directly through our website. The sale ends on December 1.


Central European Studies Sale – 50% off entire series

November 1st, 2019

Purdue University Press is offering 50% off all books in our Central European Studies series through the end of the year. Recent and forthcoming titles in the series includes A History of Yugoslavia by Marie-Janine Calic, Making Peace in an Age of War: Emperor Ferdinand III (1608–1657) by Mark Hengerer, and Jan Hus: The Life and Death of a Preacher by Pavel Soukup.

A History of Yugoslavia provides a concise, accessible, comprehensive synthesis of the political, cultural, social, and economic life of Yugoslavia—from its nineteenth-century South Slavic origins to the bloody demise of the multinational state of Yugoslavia in the 1990s. Recently appeared in Choice Reviews (Nov. 2019): “Highly recommended. General readers through faculty.”

Making Peace in an Age of War provides answers to the question: Why did it take the emperor more than ten years to end a devastating war, the traumatizing effects of which on central Europe lasted into the twentieth century, particularly since there was no hope of victory against his foreign adversaries from the very moment he came into power?

Jan Hus is the biography of was a late medieval Czech university master and popular preacher who was condemned at the Council of Constance and burned at the stake as a heretic in 1415. Thanks to his contemporary influence and his posthumous fame in the Hussite movement and beyond, Hus has become one of the best known figures of the Czech past and one of the most prominent reformers of medieval Europe as a whole.

For more than four decades the Purdue University Press Central European Studies series has enriched knowledge of the region by producing scholarly monographs, advanced surveys, and select collections of the highest quality. Since its founding, this has been the only English-language series devoted primarily to the lands and peoples of the Habsburg Empire, its successor states, and those areas lying along its immediate periphery.

To get the discount, use code CES50 when ordering on the Purdue University Press website. This code is valid until the end of the year on all print books.

 

Select titles from our Central European Studies series:

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