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THE PLACE OF PAST EVENTS IN INTERNATIONAL INFORMATION WARS1 Alvydas Nikžentaitis (Lithuanian Institute of History) ABSTRACT This article presents an analysis of the role memory culture plays in information wars. Based on the examples of Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine, Poland and Belarus, it finds

Open Access
In: Lithuanian Historical Studies
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-national memory cultures as follows: Concerning the remembrance of Soviet Russia in all the newspapers, the most historically in-depth visual representation is found in the Austrian newspaper Der Standard . It provides an extensive chronology of European history in the twentieth century with an emphasis on the

In: East Central Europe

History) ABSTRACT In historiography, significant attention to the memory culture of the Napoleonic Wars in Europe focuses on issues relating to the memory culture of the Franco-Russian War of 1812; however, the case of Lithuania is not commonly analysed separately, thus this article discusses how

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In: Lithuanian Historical Studies
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Summary

Ecce vinea Domini Sabaoth!

Livonia as a Sacred Landscape and its Historical Sense at the Turn of the 12th to the 13th Century: The Case of Sido of Neumünster

If we look at the oldest historiographical record of the history of medieval Livonia, the Epistola Sidonis is a very important source that has hardly been used to date by scholars. The Provost Sido from the St. Marien Monastery of the Augustinian Canons in Neumünster wrote this letter, also known as Epistola ad Gozwinum parrochianum in Haseldorpe, between 1202 and 1204. He conceived it as a historical narrative that was meant to secure the collective identity of the Augustinian community. Sido mentions Liflandia and Bishop Meinhard von Üxküll and hereby formed the earliest historical concepts about medieval Livonia. The small work represents the historical awareness of the community of the canons of the St. Marien Monastery. The form and intent of his presentation of the Christian mission north of the Elbe since the early 12th century indicate that Sido stylized Liflandia as a sacred landscape. He mainly used the biblical Flores metaphor. His letter fits into the context of the contemporary world of ideas between 1180 and 1210/12, which is represented by numerous texts such as the hagiographic poetry Versus de vita Vicelini, the chronicles of Helmold von Bosau and Arnold von Lübeck, as well as some papal letters. This intellectual context has to be taken into account for a complex analysis of the Epistola. The article asks about the relationship that connected the liturgical elements of the letter and the historical narrative – conceived as a technique and form of cultural memory – with the sacred landscape. It is also asked about the place and function of Liflandia in the historical consciousness of the convention (Konvent), which Sido expressed in the letter.

It can be concluded that the demonstrably earliest historical conceptions of Livonia have been shaped by the text and memory culture of the congregation of Neumünster since the 1180s. For Sido Meinhard, the episcopus in Liflandia, belongs to a “founding group” of missionaries and auxiliary bishops in Slavia, who worked north of the Elbe, and in his text he donated a liturgical memoria for her. According to Sido’s hagiographic interpretation, Liflandia was to be interpreted as part of a much wider sacral space in Sclauia, and he confirmed the curial perspective of Rome.

In this intertextual context of tradition, the first idea for an early historical idea of Livonia can be seen. The idea of the sacred landscape plays a special role here. Sido shows that it is constituted by memories – this symbolic landscape has the property of “storing” memories as mental pictures of the past. Without memory in the form of commemoration in liturgy or the performative reflection in the historical narrative, the sacred landscape is profaned. Sido’s Liflandia, which is located in borea (in the North), was part of a larger sacral landscape north of the Elbe, determined by salvation history. In the first decade of the 13th century, Liflandia had an identity-building meaning for spiritual communities that the Christian mission had led “to the North.”

In: Forschungen zur baltischen Geschichte
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ABSTRACT By the end of the twentieth century, discussions in the fields of historiography and cultural studies had established the term memory culture to designate the intersection of historical memory and societal expressions of cultural con- sciousness (Hölscher 1995, p. 157). Traditions are

In: Erinnern und Tradieren

communists (Partisans) and nationalist royalists (Chetniks), and explains how they come into play in the context of post-socialist memory culture in Serbia. This context is primarily characterized – from the late 1980s and early 1990s – by the anti-communism that ideologically favored the Chetniks, along

In: Southeastern Europe

construct a positive self-image in the changed socio-political and cultural context. Šutinienė presents commendably clearly features of the Lithuanian public memory culture that were influenced by the post-Soviet com- petition between the two main political powers, the Conservatives and ex

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In: Lithuanian Historical Studies
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range of works on this theme: Holocaust monu- ments (memorials) are analysed here not only as ‘material’ artefacts of a specific memory culture, but also as an expression of the efforts by the community of Jews who lived in the Soviet Union (or, as the author himself states, Soviet Jews) to maintain

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In: Lithuanian Historical Studies
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, the first covering the rise of nationalism, the formation and consolidation of nation states, and the institutionalization of memory culture; the second focusing on the period between the First and Second World Wars with the stark intensification and radicalization of the memory discourse in the

In: Southeastern Europe

other research interests relate to media, heritage and memory culture in former socialist Yugoslavia. Maria Todorova is a Professor of History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her book Imagining the Balkans  has been translated into fourteen languages. Todorova’s current

In: Southeastern Europe