International Networks of Women’s Activism and Mobility in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and the Successor States 1848–1945

International Networks of Women’s Activism and Mobility in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and the Successor States 1848–1945

Dr. Iván Bertényi, Jr., Institut für Ungarische Geschichtsforschung in Wien, Collegium Hungaricum Wien; Dr. Dóra Fedeles-Czeferner, HUN REN Research Centre for the Humanities, Institute of History
Collegium Hungaricum Wien
Takes place
In Attendance
From - Until
11.11.2024 - 12.11.2024
Connections Redaktion, Leipzig Research Centre Global Dynamics, Universität Leipzig

This call for papers aims to promote scholarly collaboration, resulting in a large-scale international research project on women’s activism in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and the successor states between 1848 and 1945. The primary aim of the planned project is to reconstruct the history and the international network of contacts of Austrian-German, Hungarian, Slovakian, Czech and Moravian, Polish, Italian, Slovenian, Croatian, Serbian, Ruthenian, and Romanian women’s associations of different profiles as well as to study the activism of their leaders through a longer period of time and over different political regimes.

International Networks of Women’s Activism and Mobility in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and the Successor States 1848–1945

The territory of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy would be considered as a transnational laboratory. Thus, within the frames of this workshop, we aim to provide a forum for conversation and to connect researchers to facilitate closer cooperation and further research in this field.

Contributions, which have to be based on original research with primary and secondary sources, should transgress state borders which historically cut different activists and activisms apart from each other. They have to adopt an interdisciplinary approach with examining the relationship between local, national, and transnational/international dynamics of women’s activism in the territory of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and in its successor states. Proposals might explore questions/subject-matters such as the followings:
- In what terms can the 1840s be interpreted as the genesis of women’s activism in the different regions of the Monarchy? How did the first groups of women accommodate their traditional roles as wives and mothers and became active as organizers and raised their voices for the emancipation of women? How did they connect with each other?
- How did the women of the next generations made efforts to change the existing social relations? Who were exactly these women with progressive and sometimes radical ideas? How were they involved in the women’s movements?
- What type of network systems were formed among women’s organizations in different regions over the decades and over several political, economic, social, and cultural transformations?
- How did international women’s organizations, such as the International Council of Women (Washington D.C. 1888–), International Woman Suffrage Alliance (Berlin, 1904–, since 1926 International Alliance of Women) and Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (The Hague, 1915–) influence this process? What kind of structural inequalities can be observed between the national and international associations?
- How did activism alter women’s citizenship status? Why is it important in this process that certain activists could afford to travel regularly? On the other hand, how did the activism of those women formulated, who could not travel?
- How women’s associations in the territories inhabited by ethnic minorities were related to Austrian and Hungarian associations until 1918 and how this relationship altered afterwards? What kind of conflict patterns can be detected between the associations/activists?
- How were women’s movements in the different regions of the Monarchy connected with national awakening and liberation movements? How did the discourse of nation building play an important role in certain regions’ women’s movements?
- To what extent did the activists coming from different nations contribute to the political socialization of women before/after they received the right to vote?
- How did the relation between national associations altered through the time across the borders? What was the language of communication among them? How did the numerous changes of regimes influence the activism of these women in their home countries and across the borders? What kind of shifting positions can be observed related to this issue?

By discussing these issues, we will be able to receive a more comprehensive picture on women’s activism in the Monarchy and in the successor states. Furthermore, the relation of women’s movements to nation-building in the multi-ethnical setting of the Monarchy will also become more visible.

The workshop, which plans to bring together contributions by senior and junior researchers, will feature panel presentations and discussions and keynote lectures, providing opportunities for an intensive dialogue and to synthetize the latest research and scholarship in the field.

We invite abstract submissions for 20-minutes presentations from scholars at all stages of their careers and from a range of disciplines, addressing any of the topics outlined above. Abstracts for presentations (300-500 words) and short bios (100-150 words) should be submitted in English by 30 April, 2024 to the following e-mail address: Abstracts and presentations must be based on original research with the usage of primary and secondary sources.

Notification of acceptance of abstracts: 1 June, 2024.

Deadline for submitting draft papers (in English, approximately 6000-7000 words): 30 September, 2024. The draft papers will be pre-circulated with all participants.

The workshop will take place on 11–12 November, 2024 in the Collegium Hungaricum Wien (1020 Wien, Hollandstraße 4). Travel expenses will be partly covered (with the exception of flight tickets). Accommodation costs are covered by the organizers.

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