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Between Trauma and Resilience

A Transnational Reading of Women's Life Writing about Wartime Rape in Germany and Bosnia and Herzegovina

Agatha Schwartz and Tatjana Takševa

In this article, through the narratives of women survivors we explore the effects and transgenerational consequences of rape during two twentieth-century episodes of armed conflict: the end of World War II in Germany and the war in Bosnia and

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A Gloomy Carnival of Freedom

Sex, Gender, and Emotions among Polish Displaced Person in the Aftermath of World War II

Katarzyna Nowak

Adam Tomaszewski, a Polish soldier imprisoned in Nazi Germany, remembered liberation and the first days of freedom as “bacchanalia,” “revue of the absurd,” and “chaos.” Like many other liberated Poles, he invoked images of indulgence, sex

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Nicholas Bayne

The G8 summit meets every year over a weekend in the summer.

It brings together the Presidents of the United States and France;

the Chancellor of Germany; and the Prime Ministers of Japan, the

United Kingdom, Italy and Canada, together with the European

Union (Commission and presidency) and, since 1998, the President

of Russia. Each G8 member acts in turn as summit host while

holding the summit presidency, always in the same order: France,

US, UK, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada – Russia has not yet

hosted a summit. The G8 has no headquarters or staff of its own,

so all of the responsibility for preparing and holding the summit

falls to the country holding the presidency for the year. That gives

the host country an unusual opportunity to influence the direction

of international economic and political decision making, and most

G8 members use this opportunity to the full.

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Francisca de Haan

The years 1917 and 1918 witnessed the end of the Russian, German, Habsburg, and Ottoman empires, with huge consequences for European and global history. Yet despite the obvious importance of empires to the history of Central, Eastern, and Southeastern Europe, gendered imperialism—especially within Eastern Europe—has received little attention from scholars. The theme section included here, “Rethinking Empire from Eastern Europe,” for which Susan Zimmermann served as guest editor, aims to begin addressing this omission.

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Massimiliano Andretta and Nicola Chelotti

The G8 summit meets annually, bringing together the heads of government

of France, the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom,

Germany, Italy, Japan, and Canada.1 The rotating president of the

European Council and the president of the European Commission also

participate. The countries involved take turns hosting the summit, and

in 2009, Italy hosted it for the fifth time since 1975 in L’Aquila. Italy’s

prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has been in the unique position of

hosting the summit three consecutive times—in 1994, 2001, and 2009.

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The Return of Mother Russia

Representations of Women in Soviet Wartime Cinema

Elena Baraban

This article examines the process of symbolisation in the images of women in Soviet cinema. It argues that during the Great Patriotic War (1941–1945) many female characters served as symbolic representations of the country itself, of Mother Russia, determined to defeat the enemy and ready to endure hardships and to cope with deprivation and grief. The start of the resistance against Nazi Germany called for many more depictions of women than was typical in the thoroughly masculinised culture of the 1930s. At the same time, wartime images of women were quite abstract: they recalled posters and often relied on a symbolically charged mise-en-scène.

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In Search of an Autobiographical Room of Her Own

First Estonian Feminist Lilli Suburg (1841–1923) as an Autobiographer

Eve Annuk

The first Estonian feminist, journalist, writer, and teacher Lilli Suburg (1841–1923) was an outstanding autobiographer who used accounts of her life as a part of her journalistic and literary practice. With the help of her autobiographical strategy she created her own textual space, which allowed her to assert the validity of her life experiences. Feminism was becoming increasingly widespread in Europe at the end of the nineteenth century and Suburg tried to introduce European ideas, including feminism, to the emerging Estonian intellectual audience. However, she did not find a receptive public for these ideas, owing to the conservatism of the local Baltic-German society and the Estonian national awakening. This article explores the autobiographical writings of Lilli Suburg and analyzes them in historical context, demonstrating how these texts enabled Suburg to create a unique textual space in which she gradually defined and legitimated her feminism.

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Francesco Stolfi

Having inherited high and increasing interest rates on public debt from its predecessor, the Monti government had to bring these yields down to sustainable levels and to push through the reforms that the Berlusconi government had abandoned. This article discusses the strategies that the Monti government employed to achieve these goals. It also analyzes the government?s international actions and finds that its international credibility was a subtle but significant asset. Although it did not necessarily acquire greater flexibility in its dealings with Italy?s international partners, the Monti government engaged in negotiations with the German government and the European Central Bank in an effort to help to defuse the Italian (and European) government debt crisis.

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The Whole World Revolves Around It

Sex Education and Sex Reform in First Republic Czech Print Media

Karla Huebner

This article explores attitudes towards sex and sexuality in First Republic Czechoslovakia (1918–1938), focusing on the urban Czech population. By looking at articles, advertisements and references to sex and sexuality in Czech periodicals from 1920 to 1935, it shows that inter-war Czechoslovaks were enthusiastic participants in closely linked discourses about hygiene, physical culture, sex education, birth control and sex reform, and provides evidence that Czech discourse about sex and sexuality was al- most always – apart from erotica and pornography – closely tied to discourse about health, hygiene and social reform. The article also shows how inter-war Czechoslovaks participated in the struggle for sexual minority rights. By exploring these discourses, this article helps place Czech ideas about sexuality within the larger framework of European ideas about sexuality, especially in relation to the German discourses with which Czech writers and activists were in constant dialogue.

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Francisca de Haan

The year 2010 marked the centennial of International Women’s Day (IWD); the year 2011 marked the centennial of its first celebrations, which took place in Austria, Denmark, Germany, partitioned Poland, Switzerland, and no doubt other places. Inspired by these events, the theme section of this volume deals with “A Hundred Years of International Women’s Day in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe,” with articles focusing on Russia, the Polish lands, and Greece. In addition, we review the book Frauentag! (Women’s Day!), a collection of essays that accompanied an exhibition in Vienna on the occasion of IWD’s first centennial; and the News and Miscellanea section features a report on recent IWD-related events in Ukraine, including two exhibitions.