Shatterzone of Empires

Shatterzone of Empires

Coexistence and Violence in the German, Habsburg, Russian, and Ottoman Borderlands
Distribution: World
Publication date: 02/15/2013
Format: Paperback 2 b&w illus., 9 maps
ISBN: 978-0-253-00635-6
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Shatterzone of Empires is a comprehensive analysis of interethnic relations, coexistence, and violence in Europe's eastern borderlands over the past two centuries. In this vast territory, extending from the Baltic to the Black Sea, four major empires with ethnically and religiously diverse populations encountered each other along often changing and contested borders. Examining this geographically widespread, multicultural region at several levels—local, national, transnational, and empire—and through multiple approaches—social, cultural, political, and economic—this volume offers informed and dispassionate analyses of how the many populations of these borderlands managed to coexist in a previous era and how and why the areas eventually descended into violence. An understanding of this specific region will help readers grasp the preconditions of interethnic coexistence and the causes of ethnic violence and war in many of the world's other borderlands both past and present.

Author Bio

Omer Bartov is the John P. Birkelund Distinguished Professor of European History at Brown University. His books include Erased: Vanishing Traces of Jewish Galicia in Present-Day Ukraine and Mirrors of Destruction: War, Genocide, and Modern Identity.

Eric D. Weitz is Dean of Humanities and the Arts and Professor of History at City College, City University of New York. His books include A Century of Genocide: Utopias of Race and Nation and Weimar Germany: Promise and Tragedy.


It is hard to imagine that anyone in the field of central/eastern Europe will not buy this book. It will also be interesting to anyone working on the First or Second World War, or the history of violence, genocide, Judeocide. It's a big book . . . that will have a big impact.Cutting-edge scholarship on important issues of borderlands and violence that many people—and the educated public as a whole—think about. . . . A compendium of first-rate research and scholarship . . . truly impressive.

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Table of Contents


Introduction: Coexistence and Violence in the German, Habsburg, Russian, and Ottoman Borderlands \ Omer Bartov and Eric D. Weitz

Part 1. Imagining the Borderlands
1. The Traveler's View of Central Europe: Gradual Transitions and Degrees of Difference in European Borderlands \ Larry Wolff
2. Megalomania and Angst: The Nineteenth-Century Mythicization of Germany's Eastern Borderlands \ Gregor Thum
3. Between Empire and Nation State: An Outline for a European Contemporary History of the Jews, 1750–1950 \ Dan Diner
4. Jews and Others in Vilna-Wino-Vilnius: Invisible Neighbors, 1831–1948 \ Theodore R. Weeks

Part 2. Imperial Borderlands
5. Our Laws, Our Taxes, and Our Administration: Citizenship in Imperial Austria \ Gary B. Cohen
6. Marking National Space on the Habsburg Austrian Borderlands, 1880–1918 \ Pieter M. Judson
7. Travel, Railroads, and Identity Formation in the Russian Empire \ Frithjof Benjamin Schenk
8. Germany and the Ottoman Borderlands: The Entwining of Imperial Aspirations, Revolution, and Ethnic Violence \ Eric D. Weitz
9. The Central State in the Borderlands: Ottoman Eastern Anatolia in the Late Nineteenth Century \ Elke Hartmann

Part 3. Nationalizing the Borderlands
10. Borderland Encounters in the Carpathian Mountains and Their Impact on Identity Formation \ Patrice M. Dabrowski
11. Mapping the Hungarian Borderlands \ Robert Nemes
12. A Strange Case of Antisemitism: Ivan Franko and the Jewish Issue \ Yaroslav Hrytsak
13. Nation State, Ethnic Conflict, and Refugees in Lithuania, 1939–1940 \ Tomas Balkelis
14. The Young Turks and the Plans for the Ethnic Homogenization of Anatolia \ Taner Akçam

Part 4. Violence on the Borderlands
15. Paving the Way for Ethnic Cleansing: Eastern Thrace during the Balkan Wars (1912–1913) and Their Aftermath \ Eyal Ginio
16. "Wiping out the Bulgar Race": Hatred, Duty, and National Self-Fashioning in the Second

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