Self-Positioning of Eastern European Societies in Global Relations: Conceptions of Space and Self-Presentations in School Textbooks

Leibniz ScienceCampus Eastern Europe – Global Area (EEGA) and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Osteuropakunde e.V. (DGO), in cooperation: Georg Eckert Institute for International Textbook Research (GEI), Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe (HI), Leibniz Institute for the History and Culture of Eastern Europe (GWZO) and the Department of Slavic and Baltic Studies at the University of Münster (WWU)
06.11.2017 - 07.11.2017
Leibniz ScienceCampus Eastern Europe – Global Area (EEGA)

The core objective of the interdisciplinary symposium is to raise awareness for the autonomy of Eastern European countries and societies with regard to processes of globalisation. These processes can be social, economic or cultural. The special focus of discussion, empirical material and findings will be on textbooks, as they are highly influential in the self-representation of nations. The symposium intends to highlight that such self-positioning partly constitutes national and collective identities in Eastern Europe. These identities are in turn constantly utilised, reproduced, contested and adjusted. In this regard, history, geography, political and civic education and social studies textbooks as well as school curricula/ syllabi will give interesting insight into (national) self-positioning.


November 6, 2017

Venue: Saxon Academy of Sciences (SAW), Leipzig

Opening of the Conference
5:00 – 5:30 pm
Introduction by the Organisers: Sebastian Lentz (Leipzig), Gabriele Freitag (Berlin)

5:30 – 7:00 pm
Keynote Lecture: Nikolaus Katzer (Moscow), (in German)„Wo Russland steht. Ein Blick in Schulbücher und Angebote der Public History“ (“Playing East and West. Russia‘s Self-Positioning in School Textbooks and Public History“)
Discussion Moderation: Peter Haslinger (Marburg)

7:00 pm

November 7, 2017
Venue: Leibniz Institute for the History and Culture of Eastern Europe (GWZO), LeipzigPart I: “External and Self-Positioning in Globalisation Processes“

9 – 10:30 am
Stephanie Zloch (Braunschweig): The Role of Migration Processes in the Self-Positioning of Eastern European Societies: A Comparative Analysis of Polish, Czech and Russian Textbooks

Tamás Hardi / Andrea Miklosné-Zadar (Budapest): Where do We Belong and Where do They Belong to? Research on Spatial Concepts in Eight Central and Eastern European Countries

Rune Brandt-Larsen (Lund): Interpretations of a Common Past - History Textbooks in Belarus, Lithuania, Poland, and Ukraine
Chair: tbc

Part II: “Self-Presentations in School Textbooks”
11 – 12:30 pm
Péter Bagoly Simo (Berlin): The West in the East: Self-Representation of Selected Former Socialist European Countries by Means of Geography Education

Volodymyr Poltorak (Odesa): Lower Danube Region, Culture and History: As it is represented in Ukrainian, Moldovan, Romanian, Bulgarian and Russian Textbooks

Svitlana Potapenko (Kiev): The Golden Age ofUkraine? Cossacks in Modern Ukrainian School Curricula and TextbooksChair: Marcus Otto (Braunschweig)

Part III: “Conceptions of Space“
1:30 – 3:00 pm
Péter Balogh (Budapest): Spatial Concepts and Self-Presentations in Hungarian School Textbooks

Oleksandr Zabirko (Münster): Legal History as a Challenge. The Representations of Space, Nation, and Legal Order in the Textbooks on the „History of State and Law of Ukraine“.

Jörg Stadelbauer (Freiburg): Nihil nisi bene – Deutsch-sowjetische Schulbuchgespräche über Geographie in den 1980er Jahren
Chair: Sebastian Lentz (Leipzig)

3:00 – 4:00 pm
Final Remarks and Conclusions
Comment: Sebastian Lentz
Moderation: Gabriele Freitag


Self-Positioning of Eastern European Societies in Global Relations: Conceptions of Space and Self-Presentations in School Textbooks, 06.11.2017 – 07.11.2017 Leipzig, in: Connections. A Journal for Historians and Area Specialists, 27.10.2017, <>.
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