Antifascism as a Transnational Phenomenon: New Perspectives of Research

Antifascism as a Transnational Phenomenon: New Perspectives of Research

Max Weber Stiftung – Deutsche Geisteswissenschaftliche Institute im Ausland, Bonn; Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken
Stiftung Demokratie Saarland, Bismarckstraße 99, 66121 Saarbrücken
Vom - Bis
13.10.2014 - 14.10.2014
Späth, Jens

Even 25 years after the end of the (first?) Cold War the term “antifascism” evokes manifold reactions among intellectuals and the population at large. This heterogeneity is a result of the fact that indeed the scholars disagree on what has to be understood by the term. Nevertheless – or precisely because of this circumstance – one can notice an increasing interest of international scholarship in recent years in dealing with historical and historiographical questions of antifascism, as two conferences in Geneva in 2012 (“Antifascism as a Practice and as a Discourse”) and in Paris in 2013 (“L’antifascisme en question, 1922-1945”) show. The conference in Saarbrücken wants to follow these debates and examine them in greater detail.

Up to now studies deal particularly with the action of antifascists between 1922 and 1945 in its historical and political dimension on the one hand and with the academic and public discourse of various forms of memory after 1945 on the other hand. Fortunately, both happens increasingly within an international context, which allows researchers to compare and reveal multiple interrelations. However, much more could be done by considering a transnational perspective. While most recent conferences and studies on fascism and fascist movements more and more stress the transnational relations and interactions, these aspects remain relatively underexposed on the part of their political opponents. Therefore, the conference aims to place the antifascist network of relationships as defined by “entangled history” between 1922 and today in the centre of interest.


Monday, 13 October 2014

9:30 am Jens Späth (Universität des Saarlandes)
Welcome and Introduction

Section I: Organizations and the Origins of Anti-Fascism
Chair: Jens Späth (Universität des Saarlandes)

10:00 am Kasper Braskén (Åbo Akademi University Turku/Freie Universität Berlin)
The Origins of ‘Anti-Fascism’: Transnational Movements against Nazism, Fascism and the ‘White Terror’ in Europe, 1923-1939
10:30 am Constance Margain (Université du Havre/ZZF Potsdam)
The International Union of Seamen and Harbor Workers (ISH) 1930 1937: Interclubs, Resistance against Nazism and Transnational Aspects
11:00 am Coffee Break
11:30 am Hugo García (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)
Transnational History, a New Anti-Fascist Paradigm?
12:00 am Debate
12:30 pm Lunch

Section II: The Cultural and Social Sphere
Chair: Hugo García (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

2:00 pm Silvia Madotto (Freie Universität Berlin)
Anti-Fascism as a Transnational Phenomenon: the Case of the Resistance at European Universities during the Second World War
2:30 pm Alexander Friedman (Universität Luxemburg)
Soviet Anti-Fascist Films of the 1930s and their reception in the USSR and abroad
3:00 pm Mechthild Gilzmer (Universität des Saarlandes)
Transnational Anti-Fascism in French Detention Camps for Women (1939-1942)
3:30 pm Debate
4:00 pm Coffee Break
6:00 pm Public Lecture/Öffentlicher Abendvortrag (in German)
Regula Ludi (Universität Zürich)
Antifaschismus und Opfersemantik im europäischen Entschädigungsdiskurs nach 1945

Tuesday, 14 October 2014
Section III: Transatlantic Anti-Fascism
Chair: Birgit Metzger (Universität des Saarlandes)

9:00 am Andrea Acle-Kreysing (LMU München/Universität Leipzig)
Shattered Dreams of Anti-Fascist Unity: the German-Speaking Exile in Mexico, Argentina and Bolivia (1937-1945)
9:30 am Michael Seidman (University of North Carolina at Wilmington)
Atlantic Anti-Fascisms, 1936-1945
10:00 am Debate
10:30 am Coffee Break

Section IV: Questioning the Break of 1945: Anti-Fascism after the Second World War
Chair: Gabriele B. Clemens (Universität des Saarlandes)
11:00 am Enrico Acciai (Università degli Studi della Tuscia Viterbo/European University Institute Florence)
Italian Anti-Fascism as a Transnational Movement: a Biographical Approach
11:30 am Jens Späth (Universität des Saarlandes)
Transnational Anti-Fascism around 1945: the case of German Social Democrats
12:00 am Scott Krause (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
Manhattan Made: The Anti-Fascist Roots of Heroic West Berlin’s Narrative in Exile, 1940-1963
12:30 pm Debate
1:00 pm Lunch

Section V: More Recent Forms of Anti-Fascism in East and West
Chair: Jens Späth (Universität des Saarlandes)

2:00 pm Martin Previšić (Sveučilište u Zagrebu)
‘Yugoslav’ Anti-Fascism – Driving Force of Balkan Anti-Fascism or Vehicle of Regional Dominance?
2:30 pm Nigel Copsey (Teesside University)
Crossing Borders: Anti-Fascist Action (UK) and Transnational Anti-Fascist Militancy
3:00 pm Debate and Conclusions


Dr. Jens Späth

Universität des Saarlandes, Historisches Institut, Campus B3 1
66123 Saarbrücken

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