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Dimensions of Cultural Security for National and Linguistic Minorities

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Edited By Jean-Rémi Carbonneau, Fabian Jacobs and Ines Keller

Cultural security is a basic need for individuals belonging to national and linguistic minorities. Structurally exposed to asymmetric power dynamics, these minorities compete with the larger society for material and non-material resources, rendering their future perspectives particularly precarious. This book brings researchers from different social sciences together to examine the notion of cultural security and its meaning for different national and linguistic minorities through multiple case studies in Europe, Asia, North and South America. The cultural security of these minorities comprises various dimensions, including institutional and territorial arrangements, state stability, as well as different patterns of citizen belonging and participation. Through the prism of these dimensions, the contributors to this book present a variety of strategies of cultural resilience, societal structures and institutional frameworks allowing national and linguistic minorities to secure a certain degree of cultural autonomy and develop a sense of belonging to their respective states. Cultural security is an inescapable condition for the fair and sustained development of both minorities and majorities in today’s societies characterized by deep diversity.

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2 The Importance of Cultural Institutions for Romanian Germans

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ANTON STERBLING

Abstract: This contribution investigates the significance of cultural institutions for Romanian Germans after the Second World War. It is divided into three parts. The first part deals with the general political parameters of Romanian policies towards the German minority. These policies fluctuated over time and can be analyzed along four political periods: the Stalinist post-war period; a “cultural thaw” in the 1960s and 1970s; the final and dark years of the increasingly totalitarian Communist dictatorship of Nicolas Ceauşescu; and the post-communist period from 1989 up to the present day. The second part looks at the substantial emigration of Romanian Germans to West Germany, which carried on growing from the end of the 1960s with the hostile policies of Ceauşescu towards minorities. The last part mainly focuses on the cultural constellation at the end of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s that made the thaw period possible, in which Romanian German culture and art achieved a highpoint.

Keywords: ethnic German resettlers, Germans of Romania, cultural institutions, Romanian German culture, Romanian German literature, Romanian thaw era, cultural security.

From the end of the Second World War to the present day, cultural institutions have consistently played a decisive role in the everyday life of the members of the German minority in Romania in preserving their collective identity.2 Institutions are always justified and legitimized through cultural values (Lepsius, 1990; Rehberg, 1996). They also have a stabilizing effect on both cultural value and...

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