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König im großen Welttheater
Hinter die Kulissen des Lebens Ludwigs XIV. schauen, eines Monarchen, mit dem sich so viele Klischees verbinden, und einen Eindruck vom „wahren“ Leben hinter dem roten Samtvorhang vermitteln – das will die Biographie von Sven Externbrink.
Ausdrücklich richtet sich dieses Buch nicht nur an Fachhistoriker, sondern bringt auch dem historisch interessierten Laien eine sehr ferne und fremde Epoche nahe. Dabei bricht die Biographie mit der traditionellen chronologischen Darstellung eines Lebens, beginnend mit der Geburt und endend mit dem Tod. Statt dessen blicken wir aus verschiedenen Perspektiven auf den Sonnenkönig – beginnend erstens mit seiner Person, zweitens mit dem Blick auf Zeitgenossen, Untertanen, Monarchie und Ludwigs Regierung, drittens auf Ludwig und Europa. Eingeschoben werden „Miniaturen“, in denen aus nächster Nähe Schlüsselereignisse seines Lebens thematisiert werden. Wie kaum ein anderer Monarch vor ihm in Europa hat Ludwig XIV. die Kunst in den Dienst der Monarchie gestellt. In der Person Ludwigs tritt dem Leser daher auch ein „Künstler“, und zwar ein „Schauspieler“ entgegen, der zeitlebens die Rolle des Königs gespielt hat, als Schauspieler auf der Bühne der Welt und des Lebens.
Latvians in the West after World War II
Author: Andrejs Plakans
The book is a group biography of the 175,000+ Latvians who fled their homeland during the final year of World War II (1944–45), lived until 1951 as refugees in Sweden and Germany, and then dispersed to other countries throughout the world.
The post-1945 history of these Latvians includes a description of their lives in ‘displaced person’ camps in post-war Germany, dispersion in the 1949–1951 years, resettlement in new host countries in Europe and overseas, strategies of adaptation to the new circumstances, organizational efforts, acculturation and assimilation, measures of cultural and linguistic preservation, renewal of contacts with the old homeland, generational change and disagreements, political mobilization, changes in personal and group identity, and, after 1991, the inclusion by the Latvian government of the descendants of this post-war population into a formally designated ‘Latvian diaspora’ (Diaspora Law, 2019).
Buriat Buddhists in Imperial Russia
The book systematically explores the history of the Buddhist community in the Russian Empire. It offers an advanced overview of the relations that existed between the Buriat Buddhists and the Russian imperial authorities.
Various institutions and actors represented Russian power: foreign and interior ministries, the Irkutsk general-governorship, the Orthodox Christian mission of East Siberia, local journalists and academic scholars. The book is focussing especially on the evolution of imperial legislation and specific administrative mechanisms aiming at the regulation of Buddhist affairs. The author demonstrates how these actors responded to conflicting situations and collisions of interests. Thus the history of relations between Russia and her Buddhist subjects is shown as a complex process with participation of a number of actors with their own interests and motivations.
Author: Sanghwan Lee

Abstract

The Book of the Watchers (i.e., 1 Enoch 1–36) contains several punishments for the fallen Watchers’ crimes. Interestingly, one of the penalties is optical in nature – God forces the Watchers to observe the eradication of their beloved offspring (10:12; 12:6; 14:6). However, the text itself does not explain why God chose to inflict this form of penalty. The present article seeks to provide a satisfactory explanation in light of the ocular theories contemporaneous with the mentioned literature. This undertaking reveals that the Watchers’ particular offense – voyeurism (6:2) – is critical to understanding their optical sentence because the deities often employed visual penalties to punish improper amorous gazing. In this regard, the Book of the Watchers demonstrates a talionic correspondence between the Watchers’ voyeurism and God’s response to it. Ultimately, the ocular penalty depicts God as the righteous judge who renders fitting retributions to the criminal.

In: Journal of Ancient Judaism

Abstract

From 2007 and throughout the 2010s the role of the Belarusian diplomatic service has grown in importance following the adoption of a new foreign policy strategy. The new strategy moved away from focusing solely on Russia and involved engaging with alterative actors such as the EU.

While the diversification of Belarusian foreign policy attracted the attention of a number of scholars, little has been written so far about the elites implementing this change. This article analyses the changes in the Belarusian decision-making and implementation process on questions of foreign policy in the 2010s in comparison with the previous decade. The study also compares career trajectories of Belarusian diplomats working on the EU “vector” with another emerging vector called the “far arc”. All these elements, on one hand, reflect the growing diversity of Minsk’s foreign policy, and, on the other, more specifically the oscillations of foreign policy towards the EU.

In: Journal of Belarusian Studies
Author: Susan Marks

Abstract

The house of study of Amoraic Palestine has resisted study because of its informality. By situating it alongside Hellenistic, Roman and Christian education, this article argues that examining their funding provides a means of understanding the structural tendencies of these study circles. Communal support appears mostly aspirational, providing clues as to intention and conflicts regarding inclusion. Similarly, narratives concerning individual gifts urge their moral good rather than their reliability, thus pointing inevitably to fees as the underlying means of support for the beit midrash. The necessity of fees in turn demands consideration of how those of more marginal means, including scribes, could afford this tuition. Finally, that teaching younger children provided one avenue of such support reveals a complex interdependency of those who had easier access to this education and those who had less access, as well as the barely glimpsed suggestion of other educational alternatives.

In: Journal of Ancient Judaism
Judith Butler is regarded as one of the most popular philosophers of the present. Famous for her theory of gender her wide-ranging work explored such themes as language, power, recognition, vulnerability, mourning, and grievability, revolutions, democratic movements, and resistance. This book provides an overview of Butler’s rich scholarship and utilizes selected examples to present opportunities for a theological approach to her work. Of particular interest in this regard are the clear parallels between Butler’s thought and progressive theologies, such as Liberation Theology or the New Political Theology founded by Johann Baptist Metz. With attention to Butlers Jewish background, this unique interdisciplinary investigation bridges Butler’s thought, political philosophy, and Christian theology. Judith Butler and Theology considers how the reflections and insights of this critical intellectual can help set a constructive theology for the challenges of our century.

Abstract

Anti-establishment parties with either a left-wing or a right-wing ideological slant have been entering contemporary European Democracies with sizeable vote shares. During the Great Recession, the Greek party system could be perceived as a relevant case-study for the formation and breakthrough of anti-establishment parties. Given the fact that two deeply ideologically diverging anti-establishment parties, the Coalition of the Radical Left – Social Unionist Front (syriza) and the populist radical right-wing Independent Greeks (anel), came to power, forming a coalition government from early 2015 to January 2019, the primary goal of this article is to enquire into ‘supply-side’ parameters, exploring potential associations along a range of programmatic stances and policy dimensions that effectuated the syriza-anel alliance. Using the Comparative Manifesto Project and the Chapel Hill Expert Survey datasets from 2012 to 2017, our findings confirm beyond the expected programmatic differences the existence of a converging policymaking basis between syriza and anel which goes beyond the ‘pro-Memorandum vs. anti-Memorandum’ divide.

In: Southeastern Europe

Abstract

Studies have identified variables that influence ngo objectives, organizational structures and activities, often related to the broader socio-economic context. Among the most important are the availability of funding and the density of networks. Both factors affect ngo s by driving them either to adjust priorities and widen or limit their operations and/or to become more or less extrovert. This article aims to assess whether, how and to what extent the recent refugee crisis has impacted the Greek ngo ecosystem in terms of scope of activities, professionalization, organizational structures and transnational networking. Available funding, mostly from European institutions, has suddenly and spectacularly increased while International ngo s (ingo s) established operations to Greece – some cooperating with local partners. Likewise, several Greek ngo s (gngo s) embarked on a process of significant operational expansion, mostly ‘in the field’ and as part of an ‘emergency response’. Also, a series of grassroots organizations have been created – mainly at the local level. Based on a series of interviews with executives of the most recognizable gngo s, funders and policymakers and a survey based on questionnaires, the authors argue that the impact was both positive and negative and varied extensively depending on the size and type of organization under focus.

In: Southeastern Europe

Abstract

This article analyses and develops the rationale behind the foreign policy of the syriza-led government towards the Western Balkans. It challenges the prevalent view in the academic literature that there was continuity between policies of the syriza government and its predecessors. By analysing the track record of Greek foreign policy towards the region from 2009 to 2019, it argues that from mid-2016 onwards syriza implemented a major policy shift and adopted a policy of retrenchment. This change was a response to the country’s diminished economic and diplomatic power and influence in the region, as well as a reaction to the widening gap between Greek and Turkish capabilities. The adjustment of Greek foreign policy to the realities of the protracted economic crisis demonstrates that the theory of MacDonald and Parent concerning the policies followed by great powers in acute economic decline may also be applied to the study of policies followed by small powers in decline.

In: Southeastern Europe