Ljubica Spaskovska’s article The “Children of Crisis”: Making Sense of (Post)socialism and the End of Yugoslavia has just been published in the Journal of East European Politics and Societies, Volume 31, Issue 3, August 2017. It forms part of a special section on the Genealogies of Memory, guest edited by Ferenc Laczó and Joanna Wawrzyniak.
Ljubica’s article traces certain mnemonic patterns in the ways individuals who belonged to the late-socialist Yugoslav youth elite articulated their values in the wake of Yugoslavia’s demise and the ways they make sense of the Yugoslav socialist past and their generational role a quarter of a century later. It detects narratives of loss, betrayed hopes, and a general disillusionment with politics and the state of post-socialist democracy that appear to be particularly frequent in the testimonies of the media and cultural elites. They convey a sense of discontent with the state of post-Yugoslav democracy and with the politicians—some belonging to the same generation—who embraced conservative values and a semi-authoritarian political culture. The article argues that an emerging new authoritarianism and the very process of progressive disillusionment with post-socialist politics allowed for the emergence and articulation of such alternative, noninstitutionalized individual memories that, whilst not uncritical of the Yugoslav past, tend to highlight its positive aspects.
Raluca Grosescu’s latest article has been published in the International Journal of Transitional Justice. The article entitled Judging Communist Crimes in Romania: Transnational and Global Influences, shows how the current shifts in Romanian jurisprudence have been built upon, and have drawn inspiration from, a recent global convergence towards the use of ICL for addressing the crimes of dictatorial regimes and the obstacles to their prosecution, such as amnesties or statutory limitations.
In 2016, over 25 years after the fall of the communist regime, the Romanian Supreme Court of Justice convicted for the first time two former military officials for political crimes perpetrated in the 1950s, the harshest repressive period of the previous dictatorship. The verdicts marked a radical break with the prior legal approaches to prosecuting communist crimes in this country inasmuch as international criminal law (ICL) was now employed in order to overcome impunity. This article shows how the current shifts in Romanian jurisprudence have been built upon, and have drawn inspiration from, a recent global convergence towards the use of ICL for addressing the crimes of dictatorial regimes and the obstacles to their prosecution, such as amnesties or statutory limitations. It emphasizes the importance of noncoercive exogenous influences in enabling changes in the Romanian process of dealing with the past.[Top]
Join the 1989 after 1989 research team for our conference on the “Other Globalisers” – how the socialist and the non-aligned world shaped the rise of post-war economic globalisation. Based at Exeter, this conference is the second in a series of events exploring how processes and practices that emerged from the socialist world shaped the re-globalised world of our times.
The globalisation of the world economy has most often been portrayed as the final triumph of a neoliberal international order led by the West. By focusing on the socialist and the non-aligned world, this conference, by contrast, aims to rethink the histories of postwar globalisation by addressing forces and models of global economic interdependence other than those of Western capitalism. Acknowledging that actors from these worlds could be contributors to the emerging neoliberal consensus, as well as to other forms of regional economic integration and global trade that survive to this day, we hope to encourage an interdisciplinary dialogue between scholars using different approaches to global interconnectedness, and/or working on a variety of regions.
Day 1 – July 6
The Upper Lounge, Reed Hall, University of Exeter
8.45-9.15 Welcome Drinks
9.15-9.30 Introduction by the Organisers
9.30-11.30 Panel 1: Chronologies of Socialist Globalisations
Discussant: Wolfgang Knöbl (Hamburger Institut für Sozialforschung)
Marc-William Palen (University of Exeter) – Marx and Manchester: The Socialist Foundations of Post-1945 Globalisation
James Mark (University of Exeter) – Alternative? Socialist? Writing Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union into Postwar Globalisation
Christina Schwenkel (University of California – Riverside) – The Afterlife of Global Socialism: Technology and Mobility in the Postcolony
11.30-11.45 Refreshment Break
11.45-13.00 Panel 2: Global Integration
Discussant: Federico Romero (European University Institute)
Angela Romano (University of Glasgow) – Competing Plans of Pan-European Cooperation: European Community’s Policy and Soviet Proposals During the 1970s Globalization
Besnik Pula (Virginia Tech) – From Reform Socialism to Transnational Capitalism: The Political Economy of Foreign Direct Investment in Central and Eastern Europe
13.00-14.30 Lunch Break
14.30-16.30 Panel 3: Global Institutions Without Imperialism
Discussant: Richard Toye (University of Exeter)
Johanna Bockman (George Mason University) – Financial Globalisation Through Socialist and Non-Aligned Banks
Max Trecker (Institute for Contemporary History, Berlin) – Globalisation by Import Substitution? The Council for Mutual Economic Assistance (CMEA) and the Global South
Vlad Pașca (New Europe College) – Global Advocacy or Self-Interested Relativism? Socialist Romania, International Organizations, and the Quest for Economic Development (1960s-1980s)
Ljubica Spaskovska (University of Exeter) – The Non-Aligned, the UN and the Defeat of the ‘New International Economic Order’
16.30-16.45 Coffee Break
16.45-17.45 Round Table Discussion
Johanna Bockman (George Mason University)
Wolfgang Knöbl (Hamburger Institut für Sozialforschung)
Federico Romero (European University Institute)
19.00 Drinks Reception
20.30 Conference Dinner
Day 2 – July 7
Innovation Centre, University of Exeter
8.45-9.30 Welcome Drinks
9.30-10.45 Panel 4: Neoliberalism and the Socialist and Nonaligned Worlds
Discussant: James Mark (Exeter)
Patrick Neveling (School of Oriental and African Studies) – The New International Division of Labour before the New International Economic Order: Special Economic Zones and Neoliberal Globalisation since 1947
Tobias Rupprecht (University of Exeter) – “Neoliberal” Ideas in the Communist Periphery
10.45-11.00 Refreshment Break
11.00-13.00 Panel 5: Africa and Alternative Globalisations
Discussant: Patrick Neveling (School of Oriental and African Studies)
Alanna O’Malley (Leiden University) – The Road to UNCTAD: The Exploration of Economic Sovereignty by African Countries at the United Nations, 1958-1962
Darius A’Zami (Renmin University of China) – Extra-Liberal Interdependence: The Land Commission, Heterodox Globalisation and its Roots in Sino-Tanzanian Relations in the Cold War
Theodora Dragostinova (The Ohio State University) – The Second World in the Third: Bulgarian Notions of Economic and Cultural Development in Nigeria, 1976-1982
Pavel Szobi (European University Institute) – Was Angola the “Czechoslovak Africa?” The Obstacles of the ČSSR Support for the MPLA Government Between 1975 and 1992
13.00-14.00 Lunch Break
14.00-16.00 Panel 6: Resources and Experts
Discussant: Piers Ludlow (LSE)
Ned Richardson-Little (University of Exeter) – East Germany and the Failed Dream of Global Socialist Oil Solidarity
Jan Zofka (University of Leipzig) – Coal as the Other Oil: East German Technical Experts and Industrial Expansion in the Socialist World of the 1950s
Shuxi Yin (Hefei University of Technology) – Sino-Soviet Rubber Cooperation, 1950-1953
Andrew Kloiber (McMaster University) – Brewing Global Socialism: Coffee, East Germans and the World, 1949-1989
16.15-17.00 Concluding Discussion
If you would like to attend the Other Globaliser’s conference on the 6-7 July, please contact the Project Co-ordinator, Natalie Taylor – N.H.Taylor@exeter.ac.uk
Manchester University Press have now published Dr Ljubica Spaskovska‘s new book – The Last Yugoslav Generation: The Rethinking of Youth Politics and Cultures in Late Socialism.
Her monograph examines the development of youth culture and politics in socialist Yugoslavia, focusing specifically on the 1980s. Rather than examining the 1980s as a mere prelude to the violent collapse of the country in the 1990s, the book recovers the multiplicity of political visions and cultural developments that evolved at the time and that have been largely forgotten in subsequent discussion. She argues that the youth of this generation sought to rearticulate the Yugoslav socialist framework in order to reinvigorate it and ‘democratise’ it, rather than destroy it altogether.
Ljubica Spaskovska is an Associate Research Fellow working on our research project 1989 after 1989 at the University of Exeter. Her research maps the history of the end of Yugoslavia’s global engagements not only as a subject/phenomenon associated with political/diplomatic history, but also as a broader societal project.
Join us in Exeter for our conference exploring the rising contributions of socialist and non-aligned actors to the development of heritage at both domestic and international levels.
Conference dates: 21-22 November 2017
Conference location: The University of Exeter
Call for Papers deadline: 20 June 2017
CALL FOR PAPERS
Histories of heritage usually perceive their object of study as a product of western modernity, and exclude the socialist world. Yet, understood as a cultural practice and an instrument of cultural power, and as a “right and a resource”, heritage has played important roles in managing the past and present in many societies and systems. In the postwar period, preservation became a key element of culture in socialist and non-aligned states from China, the Soviet Union, and the Eastern Bloc to Asia, Latin America and Africa. Attention paid to the peoples’ traditions and heritage became a way to manifest the superiority and historical necessity of socialist development. However, the contribution of socialist states and experts to the development of the idea of heritage is still to be fully excavated.
The conference aims to understand the rising contributions of socialist and non-aligned actors to the development of heritage at both domestic and international levels. This phenomenon was in part the result of country-specific factors – such as a reaction to rapid industrial development; the destruction of both the Second World War or wars of national liberation; and the necessity to (re)-invent national traditions on socialist terms. But it was also due the growth of a broader international consensus on international heritage protection policies – in which socialist and non-aligned states and their experts played an important role. To this end, the conference will also address the relationship between socialist conceptions of heritage and those found in the capitalist world: to what extent can we discern the convergence of Eastern and Western dynamics of heritage discourses and practices over the second half of the twentieth century? To what degree did heritage professionals from socialist states play a role in the formation of the transnational and transcultural heritage expertise? To what extent did heritage still play a role in Cold War competition? Socialist states claimed that their respect for progressive traditions and material culture distinguished their superior methods of development from that of the capitalist world. Non-Aligned countries often attempted to blend aspects of socialist and capitalist logics of cultural heritage politics.
Conference themes to be addressed in papers include (but are not limited to):
- The rise of interest in, and conceptualisation of, heritage under socialist and non-aligned states;
- the transnational and transcultural circulation of ideas about heritage both within an expanding world of socialist states and across Cold War ideological divides;
- the role of socialist experts in international debates over heritage;
- the role of individual actors as cultural brokers within the cultural heritage field;
- the role of international organisations, such as UNESCO, ICOMOS, ICCROM, UIA and others in providing a platform for professional communication and knowledge exchange involving the socialist world;
- the role of the Cold War in the development of heritage;
- the role of national traditions, experience and transnational cooperation across the Cold War divide in the creation of concepts and practices of socialist heritage;
- the legacies of the work of socialist states and experts in contemporary heritage practices.
Abstracts of 300-500 words, together with an accompanying short CV should be submitted to Natalie Taylor (N.H.Taylor@exeter.ac.uk) by June 20, 2017.
The selected participants will be notified by July 20, 2017.
Funding opportunities for travel and accommodation are available, but we ask that potential contributors also explore funding opportunities at their home institutions.
To download a copy of the Call for Papers and for further information about the conference go to our State Socialism, Heritage Experts and Internationalism conference page
It is kindly supported by Exeter University’s Leverhulme Trust-funded project 1989 after 1989: Rethinking the Fall of State Socialism in Global Perspective.
Prof. James Mark and Dr. Nelly Bekus, University of Exeter, Leverhulme Trust-funded project 1989 after 1989: Rethinking the Fall of State Socialism in Global Perspective
Dr. Michael Falser, Cluster of Excellence Asia and Europe in a Global Context, Heidelberg University[Top]
The Other Globalisers: How the Socialist and the Non-Aligned World Shaped the Rise of Post-War Economic Globalisation
Location: Exeter University, UK
Date: 6-7 July 2017
Abstract Deadline: 18 March 2017
Papers are now invited for our exciting conference addressing how the socialist and non-aligned world shaped the rise of post-war economic globalisation. This conference is the second in a series of events exploring how processes and practices that emerged from the socialist world shaped the re-globalised world of our times.
In the wake of the Second World War, the world economy began to ‘reglobalise’ – following the disintegrative processes of the interwar period. This story has most often been told as the final triumph of a neoliberal international order led by the West. Recent research, however, suggests that the creation of our modern interconnected world was not driven solely by the forces of Western capitalism, nor was it the only model of global economic interdependence that arose in the second half of the twentieth century. This conference aims to rethink the histories of postwar globalisation by focusing on the socialist and non-aligned world, whose roles in the rise of an economically interconnected world have received substantially less attention.
This conference aspires to address a wide variety of processes, practices and projects – such as efforts to create alternative systems of international trade, new business practices, through to theoretical conceptualisations of economic interconnectedness – and examine a broad range of actors, such as e.g. governments, experts, international institutions, and business ventures. It will also explore whether such initiatives were alternative at all: as recent research has suggested, actors from these worlds could be contributors to the emerging neoliberal consensus, as well as to other forms of regional economy and global trade that survive to this day. We also hope to encourage an interdisciplinary dialogue between scholars using different approaches to global interconnectedness, and/or working on a variety of regions (e.g. Latin America, Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union).
Abstracts of 300-500 words, together with an accompanying short CV should be submitted to Natalie Taylor (N.H.Taylor@exeter.ac.uk) by 18 March 2017.
The selected participants will be notified by the end of March 2017.
Funding opportunities for travel and accommodation are available, but we ask that potential contributors also explore funding opportunities at their home institutions.
This event is kindly supported by Exeter University’s Leverhulme Trust-funded project 1989 after 1989: Rethinking the Fall of State Socialism in Global Perspective.
The full call for papers is available on our conference page
→ Download the Call for Papers The Other Globalisers
State Socialism, Legal Experts and the Genesis of International Criminal and Humanitarian Law after 1945
November 24-26, 2016
Humboldt University of Berlin
Unter den Linden 6
The programme for our international collaborative conference with the Leipzig Centre for the History and Culture of East-Central Europe (GWZO), and the Humboldt University of Berlin is now available. It will take place on the 24-26 November, 2016 at Unter den Linden 6, Room 2249a, Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany.
It brings together 3 research projects – 1989 after 1989, Processes of Juridification in International Relations since 1850 based at Leipzig and Jurists in International Politics Practice and Practitioners of International Law in the 19th and 20th Century based in Berlin.
In the history of international law, the socialist bloc has been generally relegated to the role of roadblock in fulfilling the ideals of Western liberalism. This conference seeks to question established narratives that have ignored or downplayed the role of state-socialist governments and legal experts in shaping the evolution of international criminal and humanitarian law after the end of the Second World War. With a geographic scope covering the Soviet Union, the Eastern Bloc, Africa, and China, the conference explores the socialist world’s doctrines and international engagements concerning the codification of different international crimes (including crimes against peace, the crimes of aggression, Apartheid, terrorism, slavery, narcotics trafficking and more), approaches to humanitarian intervention, and the relationship between state sovereignty and international law. The conference advances the idea that rather than simply block progress, socialist initiatives played a vital role in the production of norms and ideas that continue to be relevant for the current international criminal and humanitarian legal system.
The conference commences at 14:00 on the 24 November with a welcome address and introduction from the conference organisers – Marcus Payk, Humboldt University of Berlin; Dietmar Mueller and Stefan Troebst, GWZO Leipzig; Raluca Grosescu, University of Exeter and Ned Richardson-Little, University of Exeter. Papers will then be presented that deal with International Criminal Law and International Humanitarian Law in socialist legal doctrines.
Panels on the following day will include papers on state socialist contributions to and critiques of the Geneva Conventions; decolonisation, gender, and International Humanitarian Law, state socialist contributions to International Criminal Law; and Transnational Criminality. The final day will debate International Criminal Law in state socialist national settings and will include case studies from China and Hungary.
More information on the conference can be found on our conference pages.
(Re)Thinking Yugoslav Internationalism – Cold War Entanglements and their Legacies
29 September – 1 October 2016
University of Graz
Meerscheinschlössl / Festsaal
** Please be aware that the conference venue has recently changed and will no longer be at Merangasse 70, Universitatszentrum. **
The conference programme is now available for our collaborative conference taking place this Thursday to Saturday in Graz, Austria.
It will open at 4pm on the 29th September with a welcome address from Professor Florian Bieber, University of Graz, followed by a Keynote speech from Kristen Ghodsee of Bowdoin, USA, entitled Women in Red: East European Mass Women’s Organizations and International Feminism during the Cold War.
Panels on Friday 30th will include papers on the theory and practice of Non-Alignment and Yugoslav foreign policy as well as elite socialisation and Global Actors. The day will conclude with a Keynote speech from 1989 after 1989’s Professor James Mark.
The final day of the conference will feature a witness panel discussion with Budimir Loncar – the last Yugoslav Minister of Foreign Affairs; as well as papers on race, anti-Colonialism and Yugoslavia in post-Colonial Africa; economics, self-management and visions of non-capitalist development; the United Nations, international law, gender and development; and tourism, architecture and cultural diplomacy.[Top]
Coinciding with the 55th anniversary of the Belgrade summit and the foundation of the Non-Aligned Movement, this conference will address a range of questions relating to the wealth of diplomatic, economic, intellectual and cultural encounters and exchange between 1945 – 1990, both within the Non-Aligned Movement, across the socialist world and with the developed countries. It will map the history of Yugoslavia’s global engagements not only as a subject associated with political and diplomatic
history, but also as a broader societal and cultural project.
This is a collaborative conference between ourselves and the Centre of Southeast European Studies at the University of Graz.
University of Graz
Meerscheinschlössl / Festsaal
29 September 16:00 – 19:00 1 October
Professor Kristen Ghodsee
Bowdoin University, USA
Professor James Mark
University of Exeter & 1989 after 1989, UK
The conference Human Rights after 1945 in the Socialist and Post-Socialist World took place on the 3 – 5 March 2016 at the German Historical Institute, Warsaw. It was a collaborative conference between 1989 after 1989; the German Historical Institute Warsaw; Georg-August University of Göttingen and the London School of Economics. The aim of the conference was to highlight the role and historical agency of the socialist world in the history of human rights.
The conference report is now available on our conference pages and on Geschichte Transnational. It summarises papers presented across 6 panels covering topics such as state socialism, human rights and globalisation; how human rights is defined internationally; state socialist conceptualisation of rights and human rights; socialist foreign policy; transnational movements and flows; and political dissent in relation to the global history of human rights.
The importance of analyzing vernacular human rights, i.e. analyzing when and how people used human rights languages , was one of the leitmotifs of the conference. The issue of teleology and normativity in historical human rights research was another major topic. Consequently, many papers presented stories of failures that contradict positivist narratives and challenge policy-orientated narratives of democratic transition. Parallel to transnational and international human rights history, the role of the state in human rights history was another key issue of the conference. Bringing the state back in, human rights can also be seen as an element of legal history – a promising approach embedding the highly normative notion of human rights in a wider legal history context. This conference brought together scholars working on various regions and actors in a truly fruitful manner. It linked different approaches and perspectives on the history of human rights in a way that contributed to an urgently needed, more complex understanding of the socialist world’s role in human rights history.
Read the full conference report.[Top]