CfP: EUROPE, 1945

International Scholarly Conference


The deadline for submitting paper proposals is 15 October 2014. 

2-4 June 2015, Moscow

International Center for the History and Sociology of World War II and Its Consequences National Research University – Higher School of Economics (Moscow) and Friedrich Ebert Foundation with additional support from Franco-Russian Research Center (Moscow) and Blavatnik Family Foundation

Call for Papers

Nineteen forty-five was a time for beginnings and settling scores. For some, the arrival of the Red Army meant freedom from German rule and new opportunities under Soviet rule. Others feared a new occupation and the costs of their actions under the German regime. The aftermath of occupation and often-vengeful
liberation had long-ranging consequences, creating new power dynamics and animosities that reverberate in the memory of the war seventy years later.

Historians have learned a great deal in the last decade about the war and its aftermath, and studies especially about the war on the Eastern front have greatly expanded our knowledge. However, the burgeoning literature on occupation and liberation remains fragmented, crying out for greater synthetic interpretation. “Europe, 1945: Occupation, Liberation, Retribution” is intended to bring together scholars working on path-breaking aspects of World War II in order to create such new syntheses and interpretations. The goal of this international conference is to foster cross-country and cross-regional comparisons while introducing new sources and perspectives on the shift from occupation liberation.

The title “Europe, 1945” is not intended to impose a narrow chronological perspective on the conference papers. Rather, “1945” serves as a metaphor for the moment of liberation and the advent of the postwar order. In some territories not far west of Moscow, the end of German occupation and re-Sovietization came as early as 1942; in other areas, such as western Ukraine, armed conflict continued after 1945. But all areas experienced a common shift from the wartime order to the post-war world, and analyzing this transition is the conference’s main objective. We are especially interested in how the triple combination of Stalinism, German occupation, and the re-establishment of Soviet rule affected one another,
both through interaction and repudiation.

The conference hopes to attract papers related but not limited to the following topics:

– Commonalities and local differences in the experience of occupation
– The Red Army’s experience in Europe
– Local populations’ interaction with Soviet power
– Lived experience in the transition from occupation to liberation
– The intelligentsia under German and Soviet rule
– Collaboration under occupation and as political category after the war
– The Holocaust as a part of Soviet liberation
– The fate of prisoners and displaced peoples
– Cultural and social memory of occupation and liberation
– Entanglements among prewar, wartime, and postwar phenomena

The Center for the History of World War II invites paper proposals that address issues of occupation and liberation in Central and Eastern Europe, including territories of the Soviet Union. The conference organizers welcome papers that examine the political, social and cultural ramifications of occupation and liberation in the war. Papers can explore conference themes with an emphasis on the period 1939 to 1948. While the conference will give preference to papers that investigate areas where the Red Army was active, it will consider papers addressing other areas in Eastern and Central Europe.

The working languages of the conference will be Russian and English.

The deadline for submitting paper proposals is 15 October 2014.
Successful applicants will be notified by 15 November 2014.

Submissions should include (1) the name of the applicant, institutional affiliation, postal and electronic addresses; (2) astatement explaining howthe applicant’s research relates to the conference topic; (4) a one-page outline of the paper. Proposals are invited in Russian or English and can be for both individual papers and panels. Proposals and inquiries should be e-mailed

The organizers will assist international participants with obtaining visa invitations to Russia. Meals (coffee breaks, lunches) will be provided. The conference organizers have limited funds to cover (partially or in full) participants’ airfare and accommodation costs for the duration of the conference. We ask prospective participants who will need financial assistance to indicate this in their submissions.

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