Issue 2, of “Südosteuropa. Journal of Politics and Society” has just been published. Sabine Rutar is guest editor of this issue’s thematic section focusing on “The Second World War in Historiography and Public Debate”.
It is likely that the authors of this special issue have accomplished something never before seen, for rarely if ever has a similarly comparative overview been provided of the historiographical state of the art and concomitant scholarly and public debates pertaining to the Second World War in Southeastern Europe. Following Sabine Rutar’s introductory overview, gathered here are detailed analyses by Milan Ristović of the historiography of the German occupying forces in the Balkans, and by Paolo Fonzi of the Italians; Marija Vulesica deals with the Holocaust in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia, while Nadège Ragaru examines its effects in Bulgaria and Bulgarian-occupied Macedonia. Polymeris Voglis and Ioannis Nioutsikos provide the state of the historiographical art and the public debate for Greece; Slovenia is considered by Nevenka Troha; Gentiana Kera looks at Albania, while Moldova receives close attention from Svetlana Suveica.
Compellingly, all authors reveal how, since the political changes of the 1990s, things have not automatically evolved towards comprehensive improvement in comparison with the preceding era. This special issue’s central aim is therefore to provide a foundation on which may be built further differentiation of perspectives and agendas for research designed to do greater justice to the complex, multidimensional, and often parallel social dynamics triggered in the region by the global conflagration of 1939-1945. The authors all make quite clear that the current societies in Southeastern Europe continue to be permeated by questions of what the Second World War meant. Black-and-white narratives, simple yet a-historical ‘truths’ have been put forward in the service of sociopolitical interests, and have contributed to sharpening existing divisive lines. Among matters at stake are identities, memory politics and commemorative structures; how historical studies have been (re-)institutionalized; and how individuals and societies relate to others, from both domestic and international perspectives.
Beyond the special section, the issue features a “Spotlight” on the Central European University in Budapest, which Balázs Trencsényi coordinated together with Alfred J. Rieber, Constantin Iordachi, and Adela Hîncu.
The journal is available in print from De Gruyter Oldenbourg and online at https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/soeu.2017.65.issue-2/issue-files/soeu.2017.65.issue-2.xml. The book reviews are available in open access at recension.net.
FOCUS: THE SECOND WORLD WAR IN HISTORIOGRAPHY AND PUBLIC DEBATE
The Second World War in Southeastern Europe. Historiographies and Debates
The German Occupation Regimes in Southeastern Europe as a Research Problem in Yugoslav and Serbian Historiography
Beyond the Myth of the ‘Good Italian’. Recent Trends in the Study of the Italian Occupation of Southeastern Europe during the Second World War
Holocaust Research in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia. An Inventory
Nationalization through Internationalization. Writing, Remembering, and Commemorating the Holocaust in Macedonia and Bulgaria after 1989
Polymeris Voglis and Ioannis Nioutsikos
The Greek Historiography of the 1940s. A Reassessment
Slovenia. Occupation, Repression, Partisan Movement, Collaboration, and Civil War in Historical Research
Rethinking the Place of the Second World War in the Contemporary History of Albania
From Heroisation to Competing Victimhoods. History Writing on the Second World War in Moldova
Balázs Trencsényi, Alfred J. Rieber, Constantin Iordachi, Adela Hîncu
Academic Freedom in Danger. Fact Files on the ‘CEU Affair’
A Concise History of Bosnia
Stef Jansen / Čarna Brković / Vanja Čelebčić, eds
Negotiating Social Relations in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Semiperipheral Entanglements
Vladimir Tismaneanu / Bogdan C. Iacob, eds
Remembrance, History, and Justice. Coming to Terms with Traumatic Pasts in Democratic Societies
Sebastian Goll / Martin Mlinarić / Johannes Gold, eds
Minorities under Attack. Othering and Right-Wing Extremism in Southeast European Societies
Fragile Loyalität zur Republik Moldau. Sowjetnostalgie und ‘Heimatlosigkeit’ unter den russischen und ukrainischen Minderheiten
(Wim van Meurs)