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The European Commission of the Danube, 1856-1948

An Experiment in International Administration

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Constantin Ardeleanu

In The European Commission of the Danube, 1856-1948 Constantin Ardeleanu offers a history of the world’s second international organisation, an innovative techno-political institution established by Europe’s Concert of Powers to remove insecurity from the Lower Danube. Delegates of rival empires worked together to ‘correct’ a vital European transportation infrastructure, and to complete difficult hydraulic works they gradually transformed the Commission into an actor of regional and international politics. As an autonomous and independent organ, it employed a complex transnational bureaucracy and regulated shipping along the Danube through a comprehensive set of internationally accepted rules and procedures. The Commission is portrayed as an effective experimental organisation, taken as a model for further cooperation in the international system.

Migration Histories of the Medieval Afroeurasian Transition Zone

Aspects of mobility between Africa, Asia and Europe, 300-1500 C.E.

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Edited by Johannes Preiser-Kapeller, Lucian Reinfandt and Yannis Stouraitis

The transition zone between Africa, Asia and Europe was the most important intersection of human mobility in the medieval period. The present volume for the first time systematically covers migration histories of the regions between the Mediterranean and Central Asia and between Eastern Europe and the Indian Ocean in the centuries from Late Antiquity up to the early modern era.
Within this framework, specialists from Byzantine, Islamic, Medieval and African history provide detailed analyses of specific regions and groups of migrants, both elites and non-elites as well as voluntary and involuntary. Thereby, also current debates of migration studies are enriched with a new dimension of deep historical time.

Contributors are: Alexander Beihammer, Lutz Berger, Florin Curta, Charalampos Gasparis, George Hatke, Dirk Hoerder, Johannes Koder, Johannes Preiser-Kapeller, Lucian Reinfandt, Youval Rotman, Yannis Stouraitis, Panayiotis Theodoropoulos, and Myriam Wissa.

From Pax Mongolica to Pax Ottomanica

War, Religion and Trade in the Northwestern Black Sea Region (14th-16th Centuries)

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Edited by Ovidiu Cristea and Liviu Pilat

The history of the Black Sea may be considered as alternating between an “inner lake,” when a single empire establishes control over the sea and its surrounding areas, and that of an open sea, in which various continental or maritime powers compete for the region’s resources. By taking into account the impact both of major powers and minor political actors, this volume proposes a long-term perspective of regional history. It offers a deep understanding of the political and commercial history of the Black Sea between the 14th and the 16th centuries, and provides insights into the political and economic developments of the region.

The Slavic Religion in the Light of 11th- and 12th-Century German Chronicles (Thietmar of Merseburg, Adam of Bremen, Helmold of Bosau)

Studies on the Christian Interpretation of pre-Christian Cults and Beliefs in the Middle Ages

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Stanisław Rosik

In this volume, Stanisław Rosik focuses on the meaning and significance of Old Slavic religion as presented in three German chronicles (the works of Thietmar of Merseburg, Adam of Bremen, Helmold of Bosau) written during the time of the Christianization of the Western Slavs. The source analyses show the ways the chroniclers understood, explained and represented pre-Christian beliefs and cults, which were interpreted as elements of a foreign, “barbarian”, culture and were evaluated from the perspective of Church doctrine. In this study, individual features of the three authors are discussed– including the issue of the credibility of their information on Old Slavic religion– and broader conclusions on medieval thought are also presented.

Mikulčice and Its Hinterland

An Archaeological Model for Medieval Settlement Patterns on the Middle Course of the Morava River (7th to Mid-13th Centuries)

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Marek Hladík

In Mikulčice and Its Hinterland, Marek Hladík presents an archaeological model of social and economic relations in Great Moravia, which is built on an analysis of the settlement structure near one of the most significant centres of Great Moravia, the Mikulčice-Valy agglomeration. The book offers the first systematic and conceptual view of Mikulčice’s relations with its economic hinterland. The author uses multidisciplinary research to interpret and understand the importance of the natural environment for the landscape settlement strategy, and to understand the relations between the fortified centre and its rural surroundings. Important methodological tools used by the author to answer the examined questions include non-destructive archaeological research, statistical modelling, and spatial analyses in the GIS environment.

Byzantium in the Time of Troubles

The Continuation of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes (1057-1079)

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Eric McGeer and John Nesbitt

The years before and after the battle of Mantzikert (1071) mark a turning point in the history of the Byzantine Empire. The invasions of the Seljuk Turks in the east and the encroachment of the Normans from the west altered the balance of power in the eastern Mediterranean and forced the Byzantines to confront new threats to their survival. These threats came at a time when internal rivalries made an effective military response all but impossible and led to a significant transformation of the Byzantine polity under the Komnenoi.
The Continuation of the Chronicle of John Skylitzes, now translated for the first time, provides a contemporary view of these troubled times. An extension of the principal source for the middle Byzantine period, and a subtle reworking of the History of Michael Attaleiates, the Continuation offers a high court official’s narrative of the events and personages that shaped the course of Byzantine history on the eve of the Crusades.

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Charlotte Hille

Clan societies differ substantially from Western democratic states. Clan societies are based around the extended family. Honour and solidarity are important, which is reflected in nepotism and blood revenge. However, a more positive aspect of clan societies is the use of reconciliation to solve conflicts. This guarantees that parties to a conflict can cooperate in the future. When intervening in a clan based society it is important to be aware of the differences compared to Western democracy. Based on theory and practice the cases of Afghanistan, Iraq, Albania and Chechnya are investigated. This book explains clan society and provides tools to facilitate state building and democratization in clan based societies for those who intervene, aimed at conflict resolution and democratization.

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Edited by Olga Voronina

A Companion to Soviet Children’s Literature and Film offers a comprehensive and innovative analysis of Soviet literary and cinematic production for children. Its contributors contextualize and reevaluate Soviet children’s books, films, and animation and explore their contemporary re-appropriation by the Russian government, cultural practitioners, and educators.
Celebrating the centennial of Soviet children’s literature and film, the Companion reviews the rich and dramatic history of the canon. It also provides an insight into the close ties between Soviet children’s culture and Avant-Garde aesthetics, investigates early pedagogical experiments of the Soviet state, documents the importance of translation in children’s literature of the 1920-80s, and traces the evolution of heroic, fantastic, historical, and absurdist Soviet narratives for children.

Empiriomonism

Essays in Philosophy, Books 1–3

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Alexander Aleksandrovich Bogdanov

Edited by David Rowley

Empiriomonism is Alexander Bogdanov’s scientific-philosophical substantiation of Marxism. In Books One and Two, he combines Ernst Mach’s and Richard Avenarius’s neutral monist philosophy with the theory of psychophysical parallelism and systematically demonstrates that human psyches are thoroughly natural and are subject to nature’s laws. In Book Three, Bogdanov argues that empiriomonism is superior to G. V. Plekhanov’s outdated materialism and shows how the principles of empiriomonism solve the basic problem of historical materialism: how a society’s material base causally determines its ways of thinking. Bogdanov concludes that empiriomonism is of the same order as materialist systems, and, since it is the ideology of the productive forces of society, it is a Marxist philosophy.

Fragile Images

Jews and Art in Yugoslavia, 1918-1945

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Mirjam Rajner

In Fragile Images: Jews and Art in Yugoslavia, 1918-1945, Mirjam Rajner traces the lives and creativity of seven artists of Jewish origin. The artists - Moša Pijade, Daniel Kabiljo, Adolf Weiller, Bora Baruh, Daniel Ozmo, Ivan Rein and Johanna Lutzer - were characterized by multiple and changeable identities: nationalist and universalist, Zionist and Sephardic, communist and cosmopolitan.

These fluctuating identities found expression in their art, as did their wartime fate as refugees, camp inmates, partisans and survivors. A wealth of newly-discovered images, diaries and letters highlight this little-known aspect of Jewish life and art in Yugoslavia, illuminating a turbulent era that included integration into a newly-founded country, the catastrophe of the Holocaust, and renewal in its aftermath.