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Beyond the Trenches – The Social and Cultural Impact of the Great War

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Edited By Elżbieta Katarzyna Dzikowska, Agata G. Handley and Piotr Zawilski

This collection of articles is the outcome of extensive investigations into archival materials, concerning the involvement of various nations in the Great War. The authors analyse the wartime experiences of individuals and local communities, as well as whole nations. They offer a closer, more personal view of the impact of the Great War. The book re-constructs individual war narratives, and studies the long-term consequences of the conflict. The result is a multifaceted portrayal of the war, seen from local and international perspectives.

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Ivan and the aria for the dying world. The image of Russia in the propaganda of the central powers during the Great War

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Magdalena Żakowska

Faculty of International and Political Studies, University of Łódź

Ivan and the aria for the dying world. The image of Russia in the propaganda of the central powers during the Great War

Abstract: The article studies various propaganda materials of the central powers in order to draw the image of Russia as seen by its adversaries. The author analyses four dominant visions of the tsarist state as illustrated by the central powers’ satirical discourse pertaining to Russia during the Great War.

The war in which we did not want to believe broke out, and brought –

disappointment. It is not only bloodier and more destructive than any

foregoing war, as a result of the tremendous development of weapons

of attack and defense, but it is at least as cruel, bitter and merciless as

any earlier war. It places itself above all the restrictions pledged in

times of peace, the so-called rights of nations; […] [and] it hurls down

in blind rage whatever bars its way as though there were to be no

future and no peace among men after it is over.

S. Freud, Reflections on War and Death (1918)

It is difficult to talk about one single image of Russia in the propaganda of the central powers during the Great War, as the factors that shaped its image in each country were very complex. Firstly, the central powers had a different image of Russia before 1914. It was regarded by Germany as a superpower, until recently an allied one, that could still pose a military threat as an ally of France1. For Austria-Hungary, Russia was a long-time rival in the Balkans, which, through a panslavic ideology, had a negative impact on the Slavic subjects of a multinational empire2. In the Ottoman Empire, Russia was perceived as a traditional aggressor and the ←177 | 178→most dangerous of the European colonial superpowers3. Bulgarian policy-makers regarded the tsarist country as an Orthodox empire which, a long time ago, had helped Bulgaria to gain independence but later tried to turn the country into its protectorate4.

The conviction that Russia only partially belonged to Europe and European civilisation was a common feature of the images of Russia shared by the nationals of the central powers. In their opinion, the tsarist country aspired to become “Europe”, and had applied the Western model during modernisation, but still many of its features made it more similar to traditional Oriental societies. The anachronistic nature of the tsarist autocracy was emphasised, as well as supposed Russian backwardness, oppression of peasants, drunkenness, superstitiousness and illiteracy5. However, even this common conviction entailed slightly different semantic connotations in each of the said countries. In countries such as Germany or Austria-Hungary, the idea of Russian backwardness was often accompanied by notions of the Russians’ racial inferiority and of the Germans’ cultural mission among the Slavs. In Turkey, the tsarist country was perceived as a counterpart to the “sick man of the Balkans”6. Yet, Bulgarian society positively valued a series of features distinguishing Russia from “enlighted” European countries, such as the Russian devotion to tradition and religion7.

Likewise, the presentation of other sides of the conflict in international propaganda was particularly important for the formation of the image of Russia. In the Entente countries, the Germans were depicted as contemporary Huns: barbarians that had attacked a neutral Belgium, destroyed its cultural heritage and ←178 | 179→violated the rights of the civilian population8. Consequently, one of the main objectives of the propaganda produced under Emperor Wilhelm was to attest that the Germans were waging a war in a more civilised way than their enemies9. An analogous situation emerged in Turkey. An aggressive nationalistic regime, supported by Germany, created the image of the Ottoman Empire as a victim of the aggression of the European superpowers10. In turn, the Habsburg Monarchy, faced with relative military weakness and internal ethnic conflicts11, put particular emphasis on demonstrating examples of the military superiority and patriotism of the soldiers in the Imperial-Royal army, as well as the weaknesses of its enemies. In turn, Bulgaria, which was hated by the Balkan nations, tried in its propaganda to ignore the fact that its enemies were allied with the powerful Grandpa Ivan12.

The rules governing the preparation of mass media messages were another important factor affecting the creation of the wartime image of Russia in the central ←179 | 180→powers’ propaganda. The Great War initiated the development of an organised, state-controlled propaganda machine. Public institutions established especially for this purpose not only participated in the production of materials to be distributed through posters, press or film tape, but also exerted censorship on private media, in particular on the press market. While this phenomenon concerned all the central powers, it was associated to the greatest extent with Germany. Moreover, especially at the beginning of the conflict, they were accompanied by auto-censorship. At that time, in a burst of wartime enthusiasm, even the editors of magazines which had been so far regarded as critical towards the government started to propagate pro-war slogans driven by their opportunism13.

Finally, the ranking of the Russian Empire in the hierarchy of enemies was also significant. For Germany and Austria-Hungary, Russia was, just like France and Great Britain, a deadly enemy with whom both central powers were in conflict from the outbreak of the war to the separatist peace treaty of 3 March 1918. Turkey battled tsarist Russia, first by the Black Sea, next in the Caucasus, from October 1914 to the outbreak of the October Revolution. Bulgaria, in turn, found itself in a state of war with Russia in October 1915. In practice though, the Bulgarian armies fought the Russian forces only in the second half of 1916 during the Bulgarian-Romanian war for Dobruja14.

My thesis will analyse the main metaphors and visual motifs accompanying the mass media communication concerning Russia in the following, most representative satirical magazines published in Germany, Austria, Turkey and Bulgaria during the Great War.

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GermanyDer Wahre Jacob – a magazine representing social-democratic views15 Simplicissimus – a liberal periodical16 Kladderadatsch – a magazine with a rightish-conservative attitude17
AustriaKikeriki – a magazine with a conservative profile, representing antisemitic views18
TurkeyKaragöz – a leftish-liberal magazine
BulgariaBaraban – a liberal periodical19

What changes did the Great War cause in the European satirical discourse? What changes in the vision of the tsarist empire, a hostile empire, were reflected in the above-mentioned newspapers?

The Great War firstly fostered patriotic enthusiasm, then a trauma which had a great impact on all aspects of life of the societies caught in its stream. Undoubtedly, it also influenced the hyperbolisation of satirical media. In the satirical discourse which developed in the second half of the 19th Century, Russia was visualised by means of three main images: “Ivan”, a ruling Tsar and “a Russian bear”. The figure of “Ivan” alluded to a stereotypical image of a Russian peasant: bearded, muscular and wearing a peasant’s homespun coat; and to a firmly rooted image of a Cossack, with slanting eyes, wearing a fur cap and waving a knout. As such it was partly a variation on the theme of the Russian auto-stereotype. Caricatures of individual tsars reflected, usually in a truthful but also humorous way, their posture, facial features and even personal characteristics: Their clothing was stylised as a Cossack’s clothes and the Russian rulers held knouts in their hands. On the other hand, “the Russian bear” was usually a large and dangerous animal which was cast in three main roles: as a predator lounging on the world map, as a trained chained animal, or most often, simply as a member of the European bestiary of countries. What is important is the fact that the figure of “the Russian bear”, by contrast to popular symbols of other countries such as John Bull, the British lion, Marianne or the Gallic rooster, was not imported to the European repertoire of ←181 | 182→images of Russia as a symbol with which the Russians themselves would identify, but was an invention of Western Europe20.

What changes in these images did the war cause? On the outbreak of war, the world of well-known images was coloured with an unprecedented pathos and venom, which were intended to disparage and kill the enemy. Later, the trauma of a never-ending war led to an unprecedented public cry for peace and to the accusation that the enemies were scuttling the peace reinstatement21. All the above phenomena were reflected in the central powers’ satirical discourse concerning Russia.

In order to systematise the multitude of narrative threads and metaphors present in the said discourse, four dominant visions of the tsarist country were identified. In addition, the analysis also presents the degree to which they were reflected in the press of the individual countries of the coalition against the Entente.

The conclusions are presented in the table below:

The following part of the paper discusses the four key characteristics in greater detail.

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Aggressor

The image of Russia as an aggressor, or one of the aggressors, was a leading motif in the German and Turkish propaganda, especially at the beginning of the war. The motif of a barbarian beast attacking the defenseless inhabitants of a peaceful land is clearly reflected in the titles of the caricatures: “Tamerlan” (ill. 1), “Testament of Peter the Great”22 or “Hell on the Balkans”23.

Illustration 1: “Tamerlan”. Der Wahre Jacob (760) 3.09.1915, p. 8773. Caption under the illustration: “According to the order given to the Russian army, the scorched earth tactics are applied while the army withdraws”.

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The engraving entitled “Tamerlan” published in the German magazine Der Wahre Jacob on 3 September 1915 aims at convincing the addressee that the Russian forces are a destructive power. Although the enemy army is not visible, we can see fire and a column of smoke resembling a whirlwind that is swirling over the river and a burnt-out, abandoned city. German and Austrian soldiers standing on the other side of the river are silent witnesses of this destruction. The caption under the illustration says that “according to the order given to the Russian army, scorched earth tactics are applied while the army withdraws”24. We can assume that the drawing refers to the end of August 1915, when the German and Austrian armies crossed the River Bug, and, in particular, to 26 August when they took the Brest fortress, abandoned by the Russians, and set the town on fire. The author is clearly juxtaposing two worlds in the engraving. On the one side, we can see calm soldiers on bikes, on the other, an invisible enemy who, like a leader of an Asian horde, does not hesitate to use cruel attacks against civilians.

The cartoonist’s ideas cannot be questioned as they refer to the summer of 1915, when the Russian military authorities announced the relocation of the local population and the destruction of houses and crops within the area of military activity in order to impede the passage of foreign troops. In consequence, although “there were attempts to […] confine this destruction programme to incidents of «wartime necessity», it was implemented on a large scale” so that “whole spreads of land were consumed by fires of villages and crops or even standing crops, [and] thousands of people were driven to forced exile”25. Yet one cannot overlook the signs of hypocrisy in this German propaganda. Firstly, in 1914, German public opinion reacted with enthusiasm to the acts of destruction by the German armies on enemy territory, including the burning of the Belgian city of Louvain and its 15th Century university library. Secondly, the author of the drawing omitted the fact that he was commenting on the course of a victorious passage of his own country’s army through the territory of Russia, which they were conquering.

The exuberant ambitions of the tsarist country were in turn stigmatised, among others, in a caricature entitled “Testament of Peter the Great”. The caricature depicts Nicolas II and a Russian clergyman with a cross who are rushing a monstrous polar bear stamping over dead bodies: “Here lies Constantinople, my teddy bear; we must have it even if thousands should to die for it”. The main character of a ←184 | 185→drawing entitled “Hell on the Balkans” is Ivan, a Cossack, who, by waving a curved sabre, forces the Balkan rulers to withdraw in the bloody whirl of the conflict.

Russia as an embodiment of evil appears also in caricatures that present it in the company of other Entente superpowers. This can be seen, for instance, on a poster-like drawing “Through”26, where the German Michel acts as Saint George fighting, among others, the Russian bear. The motif of the three attackers was used also for example in a Turkish caricature “Theme of the day” of 1914, showing the Entente countries as a band of criminals flinging knives at the map of the world. However, their plan fails because of a German soldier who chases them away with his clenched fist. The figure of the Russian particularly attracts the reader’s attention since he is in the central part of the drawing, between the Englishman and the Frenchman. Besides, he is the largest and the most threatening of all the attackers. His Russian uniform and the beard make him resemble “Ivan”: an image of a Russian deeply rooted in the European caricature of that time. The Russian is more rapacious thanks to the knife (dagger?) in his hand and the peak of his cap, which covers one eye and lends him the appearance of a pirate. Also, his name, Ayikoff [“Beardov”], appears as the first word in the caption under the drawing.

It is also worth noting that the narratives with the participation of the Russian aggressor were generally composed according to the rule of contrast. Figures juxtaposed against him were always innocent: defenseless victims, brave defenders, neutral soldiers or witnesses condemning the criminals. Additionally, the narrative style accompanying the said drawings should also be emphasised as it was often epic and gave the presented reality the rank of a historical tale or even a religious aspect.

A giant with feet of clay

However, it was the image of Russia as a giant with feet of clay that became its leitmotif in satirical discourse construed in the press of the central powers. This image, present in the propaganda of all states fighting against the Entente countries, was arguably, best reflected in the Austrian satire of the time. Russia, shown directly or implicitly as a giant on feet of clay, was to be a superpower “only for show”. It appeared powerful but in reality it was losing against seemingly weaker opponents. The reason for Russia’s failure was first of all the lack of heart for the fight, demoralisation and detachment from reality of the army leaders and the Russian political ←185 | 186→elite, as well as a social relaxation caused by the revolutionary fever. How was this emphasised in the content and symbolic meaning of individual caricatures?

The drawing of the “Giant with feet of clay” published at the beginning of the war in the Austrian magazine Kikeriki, suggests that the contemporary weapons of the Russian army would not suffice in the face of the anachronistic, rigid structure of the state and poor logic preventing fast military manoeuvres (ill. 2). The size and population of the Russian empire are its advantages but its “fragile” economic potential and poor infrastructure are its weaknesses. Large, old Ivan, presented in the caricature, groans under the weight of badly-chosen equipment and orders coming from all directions, and, in consequence, cannot defend himself from seemingly weaker enemies. A six-pointed star, resembling the Star of David, is an interesting artefact placed on the Russian’s cap. It is not easy to interpret the meaning it has in the drawing. Maybe the cartoonist wanted to make reference to the fact that Russia’s accession to war was accompanied by declarations of support for the government from all political and ethnic groups in the empire, including the Jews, who were strongly discriminated by the tsardom (cf. Documents…). Therefore, the Star of David could serve as a mocking metaphor of a miraculous nation-wide unity of the Russian society27.

Another drawing, published in Kikeriki at the beginning of war, juxtaposed an authentic baptism of fire of the Archduke Charles, a young successor to the throne, against the conduct of Tsar Nicolas II. The Tsar, instead of going to the front, only posed as a leader and the father of the nation, and in reality was only fighting with stress related to the war, choosing to stay in his bed, covered with pillows like in the Princess and the Pea. There were also some allusions made to the poor morale and drunkenness in the Russian army. For instance, a drawing entitled “An illustrated Serbian proverb: We are not alone!” suggests that overconsumption of vodka was the only impressive trait of a Russian soldier during the war28.

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Illustration 2: “Der Koloβ auf tönernen Füβen”. Kikeriki (34) 1914. Caption under the illustration: “Frenchman and Englishman: Turn back and fire! Russian: My legs are too weak!”.

The external causes of Russia’s weakness were also indicated. On the one hand, it was suggested that the other Entente countries were exploiting their Eastern ally in terms of its military potential. This was, among others, reflected in a caricature depicting a lying, extremely exhausted Russian bear which the allied countries try to awaken by forcing money into its muzzle and by brutal attempts to roll the bear over onto its feet29. On the other hand, the cartoonists emphasise the ←187 | 188→military superiority of their own army as well as those of the allied armies. This can be seen in the drawing where the German and Austrian eagles are savaging the two-headed eagle of the Romanov empire. The two-headed eagle holds a knout in its paw, has the image of Saint George on its breast and is chained to the ball: a symbol of the revolution30. Since the main objective of the described messages was to humiliate the enemy, its presentation is dominated by a humorous (at least supposedly) narrative style full of irony.

The question concerning the political context surrounding creation of such messages remains to be answered. Undoubtedly, the messages were intended to convince fellow countrymen that the enemy was much more dangerous than it might seem. Such communication is justified when it is necessary to improve the self-confidence of the people and their faith in victory: a context that is is clearly visible during an analysis of the caricatures. Allusions to the weakness of the Russian leadership and to the morale in the army were probably intended to perform a compensating function in a country such as Austria-Hungary. This country, on the verge of war, possessed a well-equipped army that was often wrongly commanded and had poor morale related to the anti-militaristic attitude of the Czechs, “undermining of the trust in monarchy in the Croats and Slovenians, explicit antipathy of the Italians from Istria and Damatia, [or] obvious hostility of the Bosnians”31. Likewise, the accentuation of the bravery of the Austrian leaders was arguably intended to embellish reality. As Stanislaw Grodziski observes, what the elderly Emperor Franc Josef valued most in Archduke Charles was his obedience, and so the Emperor did everything he could to prevent him from being independent. Although he assigned him to the main headquarters at the beginning of the war, he soon requested his return to Schönbrunn.

Country of tyrants

Another motif, Russia as a bastion of global tyranny, was publicised in the German socialist press. Cartoonists of Der Wahre Jacob stressed, with emphasis and pathos, the tragic fate of the Russian nation which continues to live as in the pagan days, of the Jewish people haunted by slaughter, of the Poles and Finns tormented with the ←188 | 189→policy of Russification. The gap between the Tsar and the nation was emphasised, as well as the gap between the Tsar’s imperial policy and the slogans about freedom that were used to justify it. Finally, it was expressed that the Russian people hoped the war will destroy the ancient regime and lead to the introduction of a democratic system in Russia.

It should be noted that the press was equally critical of the role that representatives of the Orthodox church and, generally, the Orthodox religion, played in Russia. It was suggested that a direct connection existed between the deep religiousness of Nicolas II and his alienation from his own nation, as well as his incapability to assume a rational view of reality. An illustration published on 4 September 1914 on the title page of Der Wahre Jacob (ill. 3) is a suggestive example of a caricature referring to the image of the monarch as a bloody tyrant, an image which, as we must add, was formed already during the revolution of 1905. It depicted Nicolas Romanov as a contemporary incorporation of Richard III, haunted by ghosts of the Jews whose slaughters he did not prevent and of the Poles crying over the independence they lost through the fault of his predecessors. The title: “Dear Jews and Poles of the Tsar”, a quotation from the wartime speeches of Nicolas II addressed to the empire nations32, is contrasted to the macabre content of the illustration. Moreover, the Tsar turns his eyes away from both the apparitions that are tormenting him and from the bloody hands. And the Orthodox cross he desperately clutches in his hand seems to be his only comfort.

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Illustration 3: “Die’lieben Juden und Polen’ des Zaren”. Der Wahre Jacob (734) 4.09.1914, title page. Caption under the illustration: “Dream on, dream on, of bloody deeds and death. Faiting. depair; despairing, yield thy breath” Richard III.

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It would be fair to include the drawings depicting Grigorij Rasputin published in Der Wahre Jacob in this category of caricatures. His presence beside the tsar was supposed to make the monarch, staring at the phantasmagoria of a monk, overlook the anger of the revolutionists and the bombs aimed at him33.

Was this humanistic discourse based on empathy towards “the injured and the humiliated” fully selfless considering that it concerned the problems tormenting a hostile superpower? Without a doubt, there is no denying it was authentic, if only for the reason that the description of the plagues affecting Russia was not accompanied by the motif of Schedenfreude, but by rhetorics of pathos alluding to the Biblical trait34 and Shakespearean tragedy.

It is difficult to talk about a premeditated message of the picture “War for Peace in Russia”35, which condemns the cruelty of the Russian civil war and accompanies the following commentary:

Warum ist der Haβ der Brüder soviel stärker in der Schlacht?

Warum ist das Volk nicht einig, wenn es im Besitz der Macht?

Nach dem einen soll der Frieden auferglühn aus finstrer Nacht,

Nach dem andern mag verderben, was höchstselbst er nicht erdacht!36

On the other hand, we should also note that this humanistic and anti-clerical discourse surprisingly rarely appeared in the press published in other countries fighting against the tsarist empire or in the press in general, other than the socialist press. How to explain the reasons for keeping silent on the subject of the “country of tyrants”? Probably it was due to conservative views of the publishers and readers of the said magazines, which led to the omission or the need for tabooisation of socially and politically sensitive issues that could evoke even very loose associations with the situation in their own countries.

Grandpa Ivan or about the country of hope

The final motif I have chosen refers to the image of Russia as a superpower that represents a political adversary rather than an enemy. This discourse was, for obvious reasons, the least popular of the discussed topoi. It was visible among others ←191 | 192→in the Bulgarian press in connection to the Bulgarian-Romanian war in which Russia reluctantly supported the military-weak Romania. A series of caricatures describing the course of war on the Balkan front presents “Grandpa Ivan” who speaks about his ally with contempt and who is reluctant to help him (ill. 4).

Illustration 4: Paspalew, P.: untitiled. Baraban 17.09.1916, p. 8. Caption under the illustration: “You son of a bitch, why should I need such an ally?”

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The motif of Russia as a superpower which does not want to be involved in war was also present in the German press when the Bolsheviks who ruled the country expressed their readiness to make a separatist peace. An illustration published in Der Wahre Jacob in January 1918 is an interesting visualisation of a new, Soviet Russia. Two figures represent the Soviet country in the illustration: Lenin, stylised as a good-mannered and hospitable man from the Orient, and a cheerful Russian soldier attending a peace concert together with representatives of the central powers (ill. 5).

Illustration 5: “Ein kritischer Moment”. Der Wahre Jacob (822) 01.1918, title page.

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A positive message of the discussed image is enhanced by the fact that it was inscribed on the vision of a magical Christmas Eve night. Its atmosphere consists of falling snow, three guests (representing the Entente countries) standing by the door, just like the Three Magi, and of an illuminated room where the residents who, just like a good German family, engage in music-making by the fireplace. However, this vision involves a dissonance. Could not the image of Lenin, with his slanting eyes and wearing the robes of a respectful host, awake in a German reader, unintentional associations with the infamous Tamerland? Did not the fact that the image of Lenin did not convey any positive cultural connotations demonstrate the helplessness of the author? Was not the author forced to accept the role of a “politically correct” illustrator instead of a courageous satirist?

In conclusion, I would like to highlight the fact that practically throughout the whole of the Great War, the image of Russia in the propaganda of the central powers was inspired by linguistic and visual schemes which had solidified a long time before 1914. Their strength lied in their recognizability and their capacity to refer to the topoi of the tsarist country, which were deeply rooted in the collective imagination. But there was also a serious weakness hidden in them. It was difficult to use metaphors as a frame of the new, uncertain and unknown reality of the world arising from autocracy. The Bolsheviks, the representatives of a new world and its positive protagonists, initially appeared as faces that did not cover any coherent, symbolic narrative, any specific “grand story”. This fact demonstrates that a nascent reality cannot be defined, it can only be recognised “from a distance”. However, it also confirms another rule governing the world of satire and propaganda, in that the main focus is on enemies, and little attention is devoted to neutral actors.

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1 Kissinger, Henry: Dyplomacja. Philip Wilson: Warszawa 1996, pp. 180–182, Ferguson, Niall: “Germany and the Origins of the First World War: New Perspectives”. The Historical Journal 35 (3) Sept., 1992, p. 733.

2 Kissinger, Henry: op. cit., pp. 223–227, Dedijer, Vladimir: Sarajewo 1914, vol. 2. Wydawnictwo Łódzkie: Łódź 1984, pp. 200–230.

3 Brummett, Palmira: Image and Imperialism in the Ottoman Revolutionary Press, 19081911. State University of New York Press: Albany 2000, p. 15.

4 Tanty, Mieczysław: Bałkany w XX wieku. Dzieje polityczne. Książka i Wiedza: Warszawa 2003, pp. 22–29.

5 Wolff, Larry: Inventing Eastern Europe. The Map of Civilization on the Mind of the Enlightenment. Stanford University Press: Stanford 1994, pp. 130–170.

6 Brummett, Pamira: op. cit., p. 165.

7 Чавдарова, Дечка: “Миф России и стереотип русского в болгарской культуре по сравнению с польским стереотипом”. In: Bobryk, Roman/ Faryno, Jerzy (eds.): Polacy w oczach Rosjan – Rosjanie w oczach Polaków. Slawistyczny Ośrodek Wydawniczy: Warszawa 2000, pp. 201–203, Oroschakoff, Haralampi G.: Die Battenberg Affäre. Leben und Abenteuer des Gavriil Oroschakoff oder eine russisch-europäische Geschichte. Berlin Verlag: Berlin 2007, pp. 264–265.

8 Jelavich, Peter: “German culture in the Great War”. In: Roshwald, Aviel/ Stites, Richard (eds.): European culture in the Great War. The arts, entertainment, and propaganda, 1914–1918. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge 1999, pp. 42–47.

9 Coupe, William: “German cartoons of the First World War”. History Today (42) August, 1992, pp. 27–29.

10 Kiliç Sibel: “Contribution of Karagoz humour magazine (1908–1955) to sociocultural transformations of the Turkish society which derives its sources from the Karagoz humour practices and its importance through the perspective of the Turkish cultural history”. The Journal of International Social Research 4 (16) 2011, pp. 238–241.

11 Goll, Nicole-Melanie/ Franzens, Karl: “Heroes wanted! Propagandistic war efforts and their failure in Austria-Hungary during World War I”. In: Rollo, Maria Fernanda/ Pires, Ana Paula/ Novais, Noémia Malva (eds.): War and Propaganda in the 20th Century. Instituto de historia contemporanea: Lisboa 2013, pp. 91–95; Beller, Steven: “The tragic carnival: Austrian culture in the First World War”. In: Roshwald Aviel/ Stites, Richard (eds.): European culture in the Great War. The arts, entertainment, and propaganda, 19141918. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge 1999, pp. 127–129.

12 Kelbetcheva, Evelina: “Between apology and denial: Bulgarian culture during World War I”. In: Roshwald, Aviel/ Stites, Richard: European culture in the Great War. The arts, entertainment, and propaganda, 19141918. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge 1999, p. 227. The term “Grandpa Ivan” (“Дядо Иван”) functions in the Bulgarian language as a synonym of Russia understood as a saviour – country, a mighty defender and a bastion of the Orthodox religion. Cf. Aretov, Nicolai: “Forging the myth about Russia: Rayna, Bulgarian Princess”. In: Sujecka, Jolanta (ed.): Semantyka Rosji na Bałkanach. Wydawnictwo DiG: Warszawa 2011, p. 69.

13 Coupe, William: op. cit., pp. 23–24; Jelavich, Peter: op. cit.: pp. 32–34; cf. Dimitrova, Snezhana: “‘Taming the death’: the culture of death (1915–18) and its remembering and commemorating through First World War soldier monuments in Bulgaria (1917–44)”. Social History 30 (2), May 2005, pp. 183–184.

14 Tanty, Mieczysław: op. cit., p. 133; Dąbrowski Jan: Wielka Wojna 19141918, vol. 1. Księgarnia Trzaski, Everta i Michalskiego: Warszawa 1937 [reprint: Poznań 2000], pp. 105–117.

15 Published in Hamburg and then in Stuttgart from 1879 to 1933. During World War I it reached a circulation of over 160,000 copies.

16 Published in Munich from 1896 to 1967 with a break from 1944 to 1954. At the beginning of the 20th century it reached a circulation of ca. 85,000 copies.

17 Published in Berlin from 1848 to 1944. During World War I it reached a circulation of over 40,000 copies.

18 Published in Vienna from 1861 to 1933. At the height of its popularity it reached a circulation of 25,000 copies.

19 Established in Sofia in 1909.

20 De Lazari, Andrzej/ Riabow, Oleg/Żakowska, Magdalena: Europa i niedźwiedź. Centrum Polsko-Rosyjskiego Dialogu i Porozumienia: Warszawa 2013, pp. 11, 109.

21 Coupe, William: op. cit., p. 27.

22 “Das Testament Peters des Groβen”. Der Wahre Jacob (741) 12.12.1915, p. 8341.

23 “Das Inferno auf dem Balkan”. Der Wahre Jacob (732) 08.08.1914, title page. Caption: “Zanurzać się – inaczej przetnę was na pół”.

24 Henceforth, all quotations in the text have been translated by the translator unless indicated otherwise.

25 Dąbrowski, Jan: op. cit., vol. 2, p. 113.

26 Heine, Thomas Theodor: “Durch!!” Simplicissimus (20) 17.08.1914, title page.

27 It should be stressed that Kikeriki was a magazine with a visible anti-semitic profile and, among others, with a critical attitude towards assimilation of Jews with the Austrian society.

28 “Illustriertes Schlagwort Serbiens: Wir steh’n nicht allein!”. Kikeriki (32) 1914.

29 “Die russische Offensive erfordert erst noch eine Umwälzung”. Kikeriki (22) 1917.

30 “Der europäische Krieg”. Kikeriki (35) 30.08.1914.

31 Grodziski, Stanisław: Franciszek Józef I. Zakład Narodowy imienia Ossolińskich – Wydawnictwo: Wrocław, Warszawa, Kraków, Gdańsk, Łódź 1983, pp. 174–175.

32 Cf. Dąbrowski, Jan: op. cit., vol. 1, p. 147.

33 “Hofvergnügen in Ruβland. Der russische Hofprediger Rasputin erhält den Zaren bei guter Laune”. Der Wahre Jacob (771) 04.02.1916, last page.

34 For instance, the motif of Samson.

35 “Der Kampf um den Frieden in Ruβland”. Der Wahre Jacob (819) 12.1917.

36 Why is the hatred between the brothers growing as the battle continues? / Why aren’t the people united when they are finally in power? / Now, when peace should build our future heaven, / Why is this country again on its road to perdition! [trans. Z. Piwowarska].