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In: Wende, Wandel, Weitermachen?
In: Historiography in the Middle Ages


Chronical writing in the Holy Roman Empire after the Interregnum was extraordinarily rich but at the same time very diversified and regionally concentrated at different places. The perception and depiction of the Polish neighbour was made on the one hand by chroniclers, who described Polish events from a neighborly perspective, on the other hand by chroniclers, who depicted Poland in a larger, universal-historical context. The report on events with Polish references can be subdivided into events that had happened long before and contemporary events. These reports can be divided into chronicle entries concerning the history of the dynasty, events with a foreign policy reference and especially reports on the relations of the Teutonic Order to Poland. Finally, the chronicle reports are discussed as to what perceptions and evaluations of the Polish neighbour are recognizable.

In: Germans and Poles in the Middle Ages


Medieval historiography generally focused on the presentation and interpretation of contemporary events, looking to the space of time about which the chroniclers write, basically determined by the history of their own time. The author asks whether this fact meant that the chroniclers dealt in a special way with the epistemological pecularities in or the problems of writing contemporary history. For that purpose methodological digressions and reflections which can be found above all in the prologues and dedication letters of medieval historiographical works will be examined. It will be investigated, whether they contain specific comments concerning the problems of writing contemporary history. Such remarks can be found especially in works of historians writing in the twelfth century. In these passages the chroniclers emphazise the importance of writing the truth while at the same time taking into consideration that the truth is possibly offensive in the eyes of powerful persons (kings, dukes etc.); in addition they argue that there may be reasons rooted in the chronicler’s person which may hinder or prevent him from writing the truth. Special attention is paid to the possibly conscious bias in the description as well as on adulation which was included to obtain the favour and appreciation of those in power. As a way out of these problems of writing history the chroniclers consider either to renounce completely from writing contemporary history or they take the conscious decision to write as objectively as possible in order to influence the deeds of the powerful (the topos historia magistra vitae). The quoted reflections and utterances show that medieval chroniclers were very well aware of the fact that the historian furtheron could no longer disappear in a spontaneous and unreflected way behind a seemingly objective report.

In: The Medieval Chronicle III
Nachfragen zur Geschichtswissenschaft der 1990er Jahre in Deutschland, Polen und Europa
Series:  FOKUS, Volume: 4
20 Historiker:innen der Polen- und Osteuropaforschung blicken in Interviews auf ihre Wahrnehmung der 1990er Jahre zurück.

Seit den tiefgreifenden Veränderungen der Jahre 1989/1990 sind mittlerweile über 30 Jahre vergangen. Im Einklang mit deutschen geschichtswissenschaftlichen Traditionen scheint nun der Zeitpunkt gekommen zu sein, mit historiographischen Einordnungen der 1990er Jahre zu beginnen. Dies gilt auch und gerade für die deutsch-polnischen Kontakte unter Historiker:innen. Der Band unternimmt durch Interviews mit deutschen, polnischen, britischen, tschechischen, französischen und litauischen Geschichtswissenschaftler:innen einen ersten umfassenderen Versuch einer Retrospektive. Dabei wurden unterschiedliche Alterskohorten und Akteur:innen in diversen geographischen und thematischen Kontexten befragt.