This series focuses on the islands of the North Atlantic archipelago and on the water that surrounds those islands from pre-history through to the eighteenth century. Moving beyond traditional national histories, the series will highlight research that examines localities or regions bounded by geography and transnational studies of the Insular world, and connections between peoples and societies within the archipelago and their neighbours to the south (Brittany, Normandy and beyond) and the north (Norway and beyond). Archipelagic Studies will explore a range of themes (landscape, society, culture, language, religion, trade networks) and incorporate a number of disciplines and approaches (archaeology, heritage, history, literature, historical ecology, environmental, marine, political, social).
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Beyond the German Holocaust Project
Focused on the struggle to survive by the Jewish Poles stranded in the Polish countryside during the Holocaust, case studies collected in this volume are based on research carried out at Poland’s Institute of National Remembrance. Where possible, they are also complemented by Jewish survivors’ testimonies dispersed throughout the world. There are at least two leitmotifs recurring throughout all texts: What are the social correlates of the anti-Jewish violence undertaken by Polish neighbours without German initiative and even knowledge? Are there certain types of social relationships more subject or prone to this kind of violence? What was the role of peasantry, social elites, and Catholic church in inciting and perpetrating it? Was this violence influenced by the Holocaust, or was it a separate form of genocidal violence?
The Cultural Roots of the Crisis of Authority in Times of Pandemic
The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed the serious crisis of political authorities that liberal societies are currently experiencing. Indeed, a significant number of individuals living in these societies did not hesitate to defy the sanitary rules enacted by their government which has made it difficult for them to stop the virus from spreading. What can explain such a situation? This is what this book is discussing. Whether it is the growing popularity of conspiracy theories, the distrust towards governments or cultural and religious beliefs that take precedence over the respect of governments’ directives, all these factors that have led so many individuals to act in an irresponsible way during the pandemic find their roots in the liberal tradition as it originated in the 18th century and in its more recent development which has had the effect of decentralizing the individual from his collective responsibilities in favor of an almost unlimited enjoyment of his individual freedom. This health crisis has revealed the urgency for liberal societies to establish a better balance between collective interest and individual freedom through responsible citizenship capable of protecting its citizens against the adoption of draconian measures when they will be struck again by upcoming pandemics that appear to be unfortunately inevitable.
The Urban Experience of Post-War West Berlin
Albert O. Hirschman
Edited by Luca Meldolesi
Well-known as a pioneer of economic development, Albert O. Hirschman has been the flag-bearer of possibilism and reform-mongering in political science. How Reforms Should Be Passed is an anthology of texts chosen personally by Hirschman on the latter production line—as he was to call it informally—that is rooted in his long and quasi-exclusive concern for development and Latin America. Key essays on the formation and the evolution of Hirschman’s point of view on the subject are collected: from "Ideologies of Economic Development in Latin America" to Journeys (and later "A Return Journey") on policy-making; from "Obstacles to the Perception of Change" to "The Search for Paradigms as a Hindrance to Understanding." They show an extraordinary turn of the mind in the making that will be very useful for the United States and the developed world as well—as the final texts of the book on democracy and Europe (Italy, Germany and France) bear out. This book represents a unique opportunity for becoming familiar with many original and perceptive lenses provided by Hirschman to look at the world we live in, and especially to favor social change—focusing (first of all) on the cultural and political side of the matter.
The Case of Mona Muscă
Alina Petra Marinescu
The book presents the reader with an applied analysis of how the concepts of information and manipulation were illustrated in the Romanian press when the Securitate files were revealed, based on the case of Mona Muscă, a controversial topic that was widely debated by most dailies at the time. One of the most important roles played by the press is agenda setting – the role of setting priorities on the individual’s agenda. Journalists draw up an imaginary list of topics of primary interest for public debate and forming different currents of. The analyzed press segment revealed the predilection for a speech condemning Mona Muscă. The message received by the target audience was not a balanced, objective one, but one that contradicts the deontology of the journalistic profession.
This volume, a contribution to the emergent interdisciplinary field of Kurdish Studies, is an engagement with the politics, culture and history of the Kurds. Sections of the book treat the Kurds in medieval and modern history, including the contemporary ‘Arab Spring’, as well as their language, culture and geography and historiographical issues. Individual chapters focus on the rich cultural history of the Kurds, their language, literary history, their political struggle for self-determination and the participation of women in the resistance movement, and on the encounters of missionaries with Kurdish society as well as on the poetics and politics of the Kurds and Palestinians. The first section examines the contribution to Kurdish scholarship of Professor Amir Hassanpour to Kurdish scholarship, and this anthology is dedicated to his memory. Professor Hassanpour was a prominent Marxist scholar whose revolutionary commitment to preserve, enrich and expand Kurdish History, culture and struggle is inspirational.
Edited by Stefan Mayr and Andreas Orator
In many parts of today’s world, populist politics increasingly challenge traditional constitutionalist conceptions. The present volume provides a variety of perspectives on democratic decay and the erosion of the rule of law, on the re-emergence of popular sovereignty as a political category, and on public reason in an age of ‘post-truthism’, focusing on the CEE region and South Eastern Europe. With each contribution approaching the subject from its individual angle and having its original ‘tone’, the volume combines theoretical insights and in-depth analyses of current developments in selected polities.
Has the United States Become a Pseudo-Democracy?
Democracy rests on ten pillars. However, they have fallen in the United States because both major political parties have strayed from the concept of government of the people, by the people, and for the people. One party wants to recreate life in the past, while the other party appeals to the economic self-interest of specific groups. The coup on January 6, 2021, has prompted a fundamental analysis of what has gone wrong, but proposed corrections have failed to strengthen belief in democracy.
The fundamental pillars are of two types—preconditions and the structure of government. The preconditions are a strong middle and working class, belief in liberal and social democracy, an informed citizenry, a vibrant civil society, and a Constitution prescribing equal justice. Governments must have legislatures with integrity, an independent and competent bureaucracy and civil society, an executive who acts with civility, and free and fair elections. In each case, the trend had been away from democracy.
According to the Mass Society Paradigm, democracy works best when the voices of the people are aggregated into coherent programs by political parties, which seek majority approval and then demand action by government to solve problems, with the information media performing an oversight over the political process and government actions. But in the United States, some individuals are so cultural desperate that they have supported politicians favoring extreme measures to end democracy by paying attention to alternative concepts of reality. If ever achieved, corrective measures will take decades.
Literary Portrayal of the City in the First Half of the 20th Century
This book is a reflection on the Jewish presence in two European capitals, Warsaw and Berlin, in the first half of the 20th century. It was inspired by the works of Polish-Jewish, Yiddish and German-Jewish authors, as well as by the connections between urban spaces and the formation of different varieties of modern Jewish identity. The spotlight is cast on images preserved in literary works, namely those concerning separate Jewish neighborhoods and the sphere of cultural interethnic contacts. By attempting to restore the presence of Jewish inhabitants of both cities, destroyed by the Holocaust, it may become possible to see how the imagined communities of the time were created and preserved in the texts, even if, in reality, the metropolises were transformed into necropolises.