Thinking the Future through the Past: National Conference of Ph.D. Candidates in a Historical Location: Haţeg County, Romania (September 2010), Edited by Oana-Mihaela Tămaş

Contents/Sommaire
 

Modern History in Moldavia, Wallachia and the Kingdom of Romania before the WWI, p. 443

Mihaela Mehedinţi, Romanians and Northern Europe—Four Nordic Travellers through the Romanian area (17th–19th centuries), p. 445

Abstract – Travel notes are an important historical source, especially for the modern period. However, the Romanian historiography on this topic is rather scarce. The present article uses the travel notes of four Nordic observers in an attempt to enrich our knowledge about the Romanian principalities in the 17th–19th centuries. Conrad Iacob Hiltebrandt, Gustav Adolf Ramsay, Hans Christian Andersen and Gunar Sölfest Flood repeatedly passed through the Romanian area gathering relevant information about the locals’ physical appearance and clothing, about their language, religion and history and, most of all, about their habitual way of life. A mixture of Oriental and Western aspects that characterizes the Romanian society in the studied period emerges from the analysis of these traveling notes.

Keywords – Romanian principalities, Nordic travelers, 17th–19th centuries

Violeta Anca Epure, Les Principautés Roumaines à la limite des XVIIIe–XIXe siècles dans la vision d’un haut officier russe, p. 457

Abstract – This study presents the image of the Romanian Principalities at the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th from the point of view of the Russian general, French by birth, Louis-Alexandre Andrault de Langeron. He participated at three wars on the territory of the Romanian Principalities (1790-1791, 1806-1812 and 1828-1829). The time spent in this region permitted the French officer to observe the Romanian society from an economic, social and political perspective. Langeron confronted and verified the informations he gathered during those three wars. Many times, he compared the Romanian realities with those of the civilized Europe. Eye witness and direct participant at the war, but also observing the transformations suffered by the Romanian Principalities in that period of time, the general Langeron came to the conclusion that the venality and the depravity that ruled in the Principalities, but also the Russian military occupation were not beneficial for the Romanians. In regard to the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th centuries (especially for 1806-1812), the journal of general Langeron represents a significant document for the understanding of the evolution of historical events and of the complex image represented by the Romanian society.  

KeywordsRomanian Principalities, Langeron, French, war, memoirs, vision.

Lidia Trăuşan-Matu, The Doctor and the Patient—an Analysis of the Medical Profession in the Romanian Society of the 19th Century (1831–1869), p. 465

Abstract – The present study tries to reconstitute the evolution of the medical profession -the physician- in the Romanian Principalities of the 19th century, namely the interval 1831-1869. In the end, our study will illustrate that this evolution encompasses more than the decision of a boyar’s son (for instance, N. Kretzulescu) to study medicine abroad, including, more importantly, the decision by the National Authority for Schools (called “Eforia Şcoalelor” at that time) that more young grant holders should benefit from the chance of studying abroad (N. Negură, S. Marcovici, I. Theodori, to quote only three names). Moreover, these achievements meant more than just the creation, here and there, of a school for midwives or for “small surgery,” involving the reorganization of old hospitals and the building of new modern ones. This is the result of a policy of surveillance, control and constant improvement of the medical services for the whole population.

Keywords – Physician, disease, illness, therapeutics, healthcare policy.

 

Simona Ivaşcă, L’érudit Nicolae Istrati : l’adversaire de l’Union des Principautés, p. 475

AbstractThe desire for Union became a “necessity as the daily bread” for almost all the Romanians in the mid 19th century. The decisions adopted at the Paris Congress (1856) crucially contributed to the intensification of political and public debates inside the Moldavian society, focused on finding out the appropriate ways and means for the circumstances, so as to make possible the achievement of the great national objective, reducible then to the Union of the two Romanian Carpathian Principalities in a single state. Concomitant with to the increasing union movement, a strong separatist group appeared in Moldavia. It strongly rejected the idea of a political-administrative incorporation of Moldavia with Muntenia. The self-educated scholar from from Falticeni, Nicolae Istrati was among the most dynamic members of the separatist group. He developed the ideology of separatism. He and the other separatists also wrote and signed many memories which were sent to the European political leaders. These petitions had same information according to which “the absolute majority of Moldavia is straightforwardly opposed to the Union of Principalities”. Istrati, also, used all the possible methods to prevent the presence of Unionists at the Moldavian ad-hoc Divan; he is one of the main authors of the election fraud in the summer of the 1857’s. Although he failed to get a Deputy mandate in the ad-hoc Divan, in December 1858, he has applied for the throne of Moldavia. But the victory in election went to the Unionists and Istrati chose to retire at his estate from Rotopănesti where he would stay till the end of his life; there he would get involved in various cultural activities.

KeywordsNicolae Istrati, separatist ideology, separatist movement, separatism, Moldavia.

 

Victoriţa Aneculi, The Case of Colonel Alexandru D. Sturdza, p. 485

Abstract – Shortly after Romania entered the First World War on the side of the Entente, much of its territory was taken by the enemy. By the end of 1916 there were two Romanias, one which was under the occupation of the Central Powers, and the other one which was still free. Naturally, cases of betrayal occurred between the two Romanias. The most illustrating case for the history of the First World War refers to the actions of Colonel Alexandru D. Sturdza. Colonel Alexandru D. Sturdza was the commander of the 8th Regiment and was under the direct authority of General Alexandru Averescu. At the beginning of 1917 Sturdza passed on the side of the enemy. Before he joined the German army, he tried to rally as many supporters as possible. His accomplice, Lieutenant Crainiceanu, was caught while returning from the German lines. The colonel joined the occupation forces and then took refuge in Germany. He continued his actions against Romania from Germany, recruiting from the German camps officers who followed him in exchange for some financial benefits. He came back to his country in 1918. He lived in Germany until the ‘40’s, when he returned to Romania, his punishment being prescribed by then.

KeywordsGreat War, colonel, desertion, betrayal

 

Cecilia Alina Sava, The Official Recognition of the Autocephaly of the Romanian Orthodox Church by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, p. 495

Abstract – The acknowledgement of the autocephaly of the Romanian Orthodox Church by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople is a subject which has received some attention from the researchers interested in the evolution of the Romanian Church throughout the centuries. Therefore, this event is largely treated by the existent historiography. However, one of the underlying aspects of this problem, namely the role played by the Romanian diplomats accredited at the Ottoman Porte, has been less debated by specialists. Consequently, the aim of this study is to emphasize these envoys’ achievements during the lengthy negotiations with the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Drawing mainly on the diplomatic reports sent by the Romanian plenipotentiary ministers stationed in the capital of the Ottoman Empire to the ministers of foreign affairs in Bucharest, this article proves that diplomatic skills were a very important factor in obtaining the recognition of the autocephaly of the Romanian Church.

KeywordsRomanian Orthodox Church, Romanian diplomats in Constantinople, autocephaly

 

Mihaela Ioniţă–Niculescu, The Demographic Evolution of Târgu Jiu at the End of the 19th Century and the Beginning of the 20th Century, p. 507

Abstract – Population censuses, civil status registers and records on natural population movements represent the main source of information for studying population dynamics. The general population census in Romania, carried out in December 1899, is regarded by specialists as the first systematic census conducted for exclusively statistical purposes. With a population of merely 6,718 inhabitants, Târgu Jiu was placed last amongst the country’s 32 county seats. In terms of marital status, as reflected by “Foaia de Despoiare a populaţiunii cu domiciliul obicinuit în comună” (“The Census Records Sheet for the Populace Regularly Residing in the Commune”) there were 2,600 single men and 1,337 single women; 1,133 married men and 958 married; 96 widowers and 358 widows; 29 divorced men and 83 divorced women. Although the role of the Church was reduced, after 1864, to the spiritual realm, through the secularisation of civil status as a result of the promulgation and enforcement of the Civil Code, the correspondence between the clergy and the local government representatives (the prefect and the mayor) reveals that there was a concern for maintaining the moral standards of the population by condemning cohabitation, marriages contracted during Lent with the consent of certain priests, and prohibiting marriages between close relatives. At the same time, what was also interesting was the manner in which prostitution was regulated and kept under control to prevent the moral degradation of the population and the spread of STDs. Together with the Romanian ethnics, there lived Transylvanian Romanians who were citizens of Austria-Hungary, Austrians, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Macedonians, Serbs, Germans and, last but not least, Jews. Although research on the archival funds kept in the local archives is in its infancy, a picture of the evolution of marriage and family at the turn of two centuries may be outlined. This rather unidyllic image was dominated by a difficult way of life, often marked by deprivation and a very high mortality rate, which was exceeded, though, by a surplus of births that were likely to biologically exhaust women. Whether children or adults, they were all exposed to diseases like tuberculosis, pneumonia, scarlet fever, typhoid fever, digestive infections, syphilis and malaria.

KeywordsDemography, birth rate, marriage, death rate, census, marital status

 
Laura Ulinici, The Zappa Issue in the Liberal Newspapers Voinţa Naţională and Lupta (1892), p. 521

Abstract Evangelios Zappa, a Greek from Epirus, came to Wallachia, where he died in 1865 after amassing an impressive fortune. In his will, he entrusted the usufruct of his fortune to his cousin, Constantine Zappa, who was also the executor of Evangelios’s will. At Constantine’s death, the Olympia Commission in Athens was to become the sole heir. When the succession was opened, the fortune was claimed by Romania, Greece and, last but not least, by Evangelios’s heirs. In this study we analyze the articles published in the central Liberal newspapers Voinţa Naţională and Lupta concerning the Zappa issue; we also pay attention to the opinions expressed in these newspapers regarding the legacy. The Liberals were against the government’s decision not to claim Zappa’s fortune, in case his natural heirs proved to be legitimate. Given its attitude, the Conservative Party was accused that it had caused prejudice to the state. This is why the Liberals proposed their own solution to the case: the application of article 7 of the Constitution, which prevented foreigners from owning real estate on the Romanian territory. Another reproach Liberals made to the Conservative Party was the government’s uninspired action regarding the Zappa issue, and the fact that the national interests in this matter had been ignored.

Keywords – succession, Evangelios Zappa, will, liberals, Constitution, Bedmar, article 7

 

Augusta Costiuc Radosav, Historical Considerations and Controversies on the Yiddish Press in the Romanian Principalities, p. 531

Abstract – The paper is a survey concerning the emergence and development of the Yiddish press in the Romanian Principalities in the second half of the 19th century. It highlights the inception and subsequent development of the Jewish press in the world, in various Jewish languages: Hebrew, Yiddish and Ladino. It also proposes a brief typology of the first Jewish periodicals based on their common features: the journals of literature and philosophy (prevalent in the 18th century) and the journals that focus on current events (prevalent in the 19th century). The paper emphasizes the importance and early debut of the journals that concentrate on current events in Moldavia and Wallachia and mentions some opposing standpoints of the editors, reflected in their divergent orientations. It also calls the attention to some special cases of bilingual journals (Yiddish and Romanian) and stresses the importance of the first Yiddish daily newspapers in the world that appeared in Bucharest in 1877. The paper identifies and lists the absence and sometimes the complete omission of the Yiddish periodicals coming from Moldavia and Wallachia from major historiographical works on the Jewish press.

KeywordsJewish Press, Yiddish periodicals in Moldavia and Wallachia

 

Oana Habor, Romania’s Accession to the Triple Alliance and Russia’s Political Attempts to Extend its Influence in the Balkans, p. 543

Abstract – Focusing on the Romanian-Russian political and diplomatic relations, the present article examines the period between Romania’s accession to the Triple Alliance (a difficult decision, given its geopolitical and geo-strategic circumstances, as well as its relations with the neighboring Austro-Hungarian and Russian Empires) and the end of the nineteenth century, when, against the background of the two emerging rival blocks (the Central Powers and the Triple Entente), Russia attempted to persuade Romania that it should get closer to the Russian Empire. Events that received special attention included the Memorandum Movement, which Russia was accused of having instigated, the Bulgarian crisis, and King Carol’s 1898 visit to Russia. Despite all of Russia’s attempts to attract Romania within its sphere of influence, the disputes between the two governments escalated at the end of the nineteenth century. The increasingly clear contours of the future alliance made Russia desire that Romania should distance itself from the Triple Alliance, or, at least, that it should assume a neutral status. This period witnessed the affirmation of the young independent state on an international level, and Russia was bound to take a stand in this respect.

KeywordsIndependence, coalition, spheres of interest, the Great Powers, the Bulgarian crisis, the Triple Alliance.

 
 
Contemporary History. International Relations        553
 

Dana-Emilia Burian, The Achievements of the Feminist Movement in Romania in the First Half of the 20th Century (Social, Moral and Legislative Aspects), p. 555

Abstract – In this presentation we shall try to summarize the efforts and the successes of Romanian women in trying to gain access to Romanian political life, to found feminist associations (or to continue those founded at the middle of the 19th century) which tried to help young women who moved from the countryside to the city in finding a proper job or integrate them in schools that belonged to those feminist associations, so that they would find a suitable job on the labor market. Moreover, the associations and the feminist groups assisted in the foundation of crèches, kindergartens, where the little ones could stay while their mothers were at work. At the same time, the feminists fought for their acceptance as teaching staff members in the university environment, this fact implying all the obligations such a function demands, including that of voting in the faculty board. They wanted to demonstrate that the periods when women were activating exclusively in the domestic environment, taking care of the household and raising children, were gone and that it was time to abandon that old routine. The paper relates the trials and the results of the feminists at a national and international level, because their achievements crossed the national borders. Here we shall refer to the collective achievements or to the individual ones that made our country known abroad.

Keywords – Feminist movement, women association, education, civil right, political right.

 

Ioana Florea, Das wöchentliche Hermannstädter Sportblatt im Kontext der institutionellen Entwicklung der siebenbürgisch-sächsischen Sportbewegung 1920, p. 565

Abstract – The Weekly Sportblatt from Hermannstadt/Sibiu in the Context of the Institutional Development of Transylvanian-Saxon Sports in 1920 – The choice of topic is based on the fact that German language sports press in Transylvania hasn’t yet been the object of a comprehensive research. The present article offers a monographic presentation of the weekly Sportblatt, focusing on the way the newspaper reflects the level of development of Transylvanian-Saxon sports press in 1920 and the evolution of modern sports on this particular population segment. According to the press of the time, the spring 1920 constitutes the moment of beginning for organized sports in Hermannstadt/Sibiu and therefore represents a pre-institutional phase, as territorial associations and extensive competitions weren’t yet established. The paper approaches a whole range of themes characteristic for the time, like financial autonomy of sports clubs, establishment of territorial associations, sports politicization, sports language, etc. The study of the newspaper reveals the features of sports press of the time, such as journalistic genera, level and register of speech, columns, sources of information, target audience, geographical range and time frame.

Keywords – Sports press, leisure, sports infrastructure, clubs, associations.

 

Lavinia Buda, The Odyssey of the Concept of the Marian Union of the Uniate Romanian Women (in the First Half of the 20th Century), p. 581

Abstract – The establishment of the Marian Union of the Uniate Romanian Women in the Archdiocese of Alba-Iulia and Fagaraş arose from the increase in the number of Marian associations and from the necessity of centralizing their activity. Nevertheless, its materialization faced a number of organizational and practical impediments. In spite of the difficulties and controversies around its organization, the Marian Union was founded and it carried out moral, religious, social, charitable and cultural activities. The goal of the Union in question was to promote the welfare of the Greek Catholic Church by both attracting the believers and thoroughly studying the customs of Marian piety. The work of the Marian Union in the Archdiocese took place within the general congresses organized in partnership with the General Association of the Uniate Romanians, but also at archbishopric level through general meetings attended not only by members of Marian associations, but also by many believers. Both World Wars gave rise to opportunities of consolidating the Union, but at the same time they created hindrances due to the difficulties they brought along. The religious hierarchy considered it a favorable time to intervene in the believers’ lives by means of both spiritual and material assistance. The Union attempted to mobilize people to help their countrymen and, at the same time, it spread the religious feeling through constant attendance at the liturgy, prayers, spiritual exercises, confessions and redemption, the imitation of the virtues of Holy Mary, etc... The social and charitable activities of the Union represented the main objectives of the Marian Union, because the Romanian society was in great need of such activities.

KeywordsMarian Union, Virgin Mary, Marian associations, devotion, Transylvania

 

Adriana Man (Szekely), Reference Points on the Social Investigations Conducted in Interwar Romanian Libraries, p. 593

Abstract – The paper has as an objective the presentation of a number of aspects regarding the traditional sociological investigations (questionnaire-based surveys, statistics) that were conducted in Romanian libraries in the interwar period, when libraries were considered an integral part of the educational programs aimed at the general population. The questionnaire was seen as the most effective way of investigating the needs existing within libraries. This instrument was used in surveys conducted by certain associations or foundations, such as The Royal Cultural Foundation or The Sociological School of Bucharest, which was led by the renowned Dimitrie Gusti. A first objective of this paper is the content analysis of the questionnaires used on a national scale and referring to books, reading and libraries. Another goal would be related to the data on the activity of Transylvanian libraries prior to 1918, collected by Ioan Muşlea, who was among the first Romanian directors of the University Library of Cluj. Through this paper, we shall complete the information regarding the survey conducted by Muşlea by presenting his manuscript identified within the collections of CUL Cluj (Ms.4720) – Anchetă referitoare la istoricul bibliotecilor publice din Ardeal în 1929 şi 1934 [Survey Regarding the History of Public Libraries in the Transylvanian Region in 1929 and 1934]. A final point that we should like to highlight is the practices of reading and the surveys on peasant reading conducted in village libraries in the interwar period. The concluding remarks will argue that the sociological surveys done in the Romanian libraries in the interwar period revealed the poor state of the libraries, and also of the literacy level of the population. These surveys can become key points in the historical research referring to the libraries of that period.

Keywords – Cultural policies, sociological surveys, libraries, reading practices, Dimitrie Gusti, Ioan Muşlea.

 

Florin-Răzvan Mihai, L’Élite politique ukrainienne de Bucovine : La dynamique électorale des élections générales (1918-1937), p. 605

AbstractThe Ukrainian political elite of Bukovina. The electoral dynamics of the general elections (1918 - 1937) – In the present study, we suggest a fresh approach to the Ukrainean interwar political elite, an analysis of selection strategies of candidates for obtaining membership in the Chamber of Deputies and in the Senate. All Ukrainean candidates in the general elections that took place between 1919 and 1937, for the Parliament, were introduced in a database containing information about the politician’s name, the district for which he stood for election, the political party to which he belonged at the moment of the elections, the political party/bloc/group on whose list he appeared, his position on the list, his profession, age. We have tried to compensate for the temporal gap regarding the subject under research by a documentation as vast as possible, which contains archives, specialized literature, correspondence, memorials, press (central and local), official publications, biographies, monographers, encyclopaedias and biographical dictionaries. Between 1919-1937, the Ukrainians integrated in the “Romanian” parties, as members, or participating in electoral pacts. We studied the political strategy of nationalist Ukrainian Elite, represented by the National Ukrainian Party (1927-1937), and also the significance of Ukrainian members of Liberal, National-Peasant, Socialist and Agrarian parties. The charts and the graphics added highlight the numeric evolution of Ukrainian candidates in certain parties and the numeric evolution of Ukrainian members of Parliament, chosen in the Bukovina province, in comparison with other nationalities.

Keyword – Political elite, Ukrainians, Bukovina, electoral dynamics, electoral candidates

 

Daniel-Valeriu Boboc, The Election Agent in the Interwar Elections, p. 617

Abstract – The election agent was the product of the modern constitutional life. His activity started in the second half of the 19th century and he played even a greater role after the end of World War I, when a major reform was implemented in Romania: the universal suffrage. The election agent’s behavior and mentality were symptomatic for an undeveloped political life marked by violence, populism, demagogy, and the lack of political knowledge. But, in the end, the election struggle proved to be positive, leading to more civilized and less violent elections.

Keywords – Democracy, political modernization, elections, political behavior, political parties, political violence

 
Oana-Mihaela Tămaş, Alcoholism and Prohibition—Mobilisation and Civic Action in the Interwar Romania, p. 631

Abstract – The interwar period marked a new stage in the anti-alcohol struggle, with the appeal for prohibition, after the model provided by the U.S. and the Nordic states. The struggle against alcoholism represented a problem whose discussion gained momentum during this period. This paper aims to present the appeal made by the Romanian civil society with a view to the necessity of taking drastic measures regarding the phenomenon of alcoholism in Romania, as evidenced by the press of the time and by certain reactions of the authorities. One of the most effective measures concerning the placement of the production and sale of alcohol under strict control was the re-establishment of the Financial Guard. The extent to which the Financial Guard represented a successful response of the authorities to the signals and pressures coming from society at large is one of the topics addressed in this paper. An important factor that hindered serious intentions towards the introduction of prohibition was that of the large amounts which the state collected as rates and taxes on the production and marketing of alcoholic beverages. Moreover, the weakness of the state institutions, the widespread corruption and the permeability of the frontiers as regarded smuggling activities made it virtually impossible to enforce a prohibition-related legislation. This was basically arrested in a stage of utopia. Several measures taken under the Law Governing the Monopoly of Spirits Sale and the Consumption Tax from April 1932 may be considered as steps towards the partial prohibition of hard liquors alone. Under this law, the establishment of surcharges and of a strict regime for distilled spirits practically discouraged their consumption. The high fines set for the violation of these laws, as well as the penalties involving imprisonment were intended to have the same effect of limiting the consumption of distilled beverages and indirectly encouraged the consumption of wine or beer.

Keywords – Prohibition, alcoholism, public opinion, alcohol laws, alcohol monopoly.

 
Anca Filipovici, The Romanian Secondary Education—Primary Source of Development for the Interwar Intellectuality of Northern Moldavia, p. 643

Abstract – Intellectuality is a concept which does not allow for any “cookie-cutter” approach. However, intellectuality features some constant elements, whose understanding makes possible the comprehension of the identity and the mechanisms underlying it. The sources of development of the intellectuality, its structure and composition, as well as the objectives which animate it represent the central pillars in the research of this “chameleonic” notion. Being widely perceived as a social-professional group that creates or mediates culture, the intellectuality consists of a category of individuals developed and consolidated along a certain time period, during which education and school implicitly play an essential role. The primary source of development for the Romanian interwar intellectuality is the upper secondary education, as a compulsory stage for the access to university education. Starting from this premise, the present study analyses the framework for the development of the intellectuality in Northern Moldavia, beginning with a diagnosis of the Romanian interwar secondary education system and continuing with a presentation of the local school structure. Finally, the analysis aims at outlining some defining coordinates of the school-educated population in the researched area, which will provide the Moldavian interwar intellectuality.

Keywords – Secondary education, education policies, intellectuality, school-educated population.

 

Mária Tímea Kerekes, The Impact of Liberal Thinking Upon the Transylvanian Hungarian Political Views during the Interwar Period, p. 657

Abstract – The historical investigation of the Hungarian minority from Transylvania in the interwar period is not a recent subject. However, the issue of minorities in this area of Central and Central-Eastern Europe is still a controversial problem in today’s literature. This study tries to present from a different angle the Hungarian minority’s reorganization in the mentioned period. It shows a new perspective: the influence of liberal thinking. The traditional liberal thinking in Transylvania has many interpretations. There are two antagonistic opinions: the first one stresses the total absence of the liberal ideas, saying that there is no tradition of liberalism in Transylvania, due to the lack of conditions for this political orientation. The second one states that the liberal principles are necessary in Transylvania, because this is the only way the three nations—Hungarians, Romanians, Germans—can live together. This study analyzes the impact of liberal thinking on the Hungarian political elite. The main goal is to demonstrate the existence of liberal thinking in the evolution of the Hungarian community’s political thought. This subject is relevant because the liberal thinking and the traditional parliamentary system were in crisis between the two World Wars in Europe, due to the increasing influence of extremist ideologies. Communism and extreme nationalism gave a simplified answer to the problems generated by the First World War and the Great Depression. Can we speak about a “third way” of political thinking of the Hungarian community, which tries to stay between the two extremist ideologies?

Keywords – Hungarian minority, Transylvanianism, liberal thinking, “the third way”, democracy

 

Aura Maria Comănescu (Pintea), Between Tradition and Emancipation—Jewish Communities in Maramureş during the Interwar Period, p. 669

Abstract – Drawing on the very limited bibliography, on the very few documents existing in the archives, as well as on the interviews of 15 people—Jews, Romanians, and one Ukrainian—we have tried to achieve a picture of the life Jewish people from Maramureş led in the interwar years, one of the most effervescent periods from the point of view of the economic, social and cultural development. This oral history research attempts to discover the way in which people moved away from traditions, the minor deviations from the written and the unwritten laws of the Jewish community, the closer contacts with the Gentile community, as well as the impact of the general modernization of the society. The conflict between generations represents an major feature of that time. The young generation of that period left behind their parents’ unswerving beliefs and embraced the temptations of the new times, with new rules, which they adopted at the risk of losing their identity along the way. The importance of such a study consists in the fact that it tries to present the Jewish identity dilemmas within larger or smaller communities, both in towns and in the remotest hamlets, and to outline a critical perspective on the relationship between identity and otherness.

Keywords – Jewish, interwar period, tradition, identity, otherness, oral history

 

Mihai Cristian Şelaru, Gheorghe G. Mironescu—Romania’s Envoy to the Hague Conference (1929–1930), p. 681

Abstract – Gheorghe G. Mironescu, a distinguished intellectual, the leader of the Peasant National Party, was the Romanian envoy at the Hague Conference. A member of parliament, a minister, President of the Council of Ministers and a royal resident, he presided, in June 1930, over the government that institutionalised the return to Romania and the enthronement of King Carol II. He was the Minister of Foreign Affairs and led the Romanian delegation to the Hague Conference, whose main point on the agenda was the Young Plan concerning the measures that had to be taken after World War II. The signs of the crisis had already appeared at the end of 1927, when there emerged huge disturbances in the economic and political system. Under such circumstances, Mironescu declared that Romania would never accept this plan unless it were the subject for debate at a further conference. Therefore, dissatisfied, the Romanian delegation asked for the plan to be the main subject at two international conferences. During the first conference held in the Hague, the problems entailed by the evacuation of the Rhenane region were discussed and the problem of the eastern reparations was taken into account only after the repeated insistence of the Greek and Romanian delegations. The second conference approved the Young Plan, settling the problem of the reparations. The most disputed matter was that concerning the compromise between the Hungarian reparations and the optants. Eventually, the war debts were paid by the Germans without any contribution coming from the Romanian State.

Keywords – President of the Council of Ministers; the Hague Conference; the Peasant National Party, Romanian Minister

Cristina Scarlat, The Electoral Confrontations of 1937—An Analysis in Light of the Newspapers of the Time, p. 693

Abstract – The general elections of 1937 represented the final episode of a series of events that put an end to the interwar Romanian democratic and multiparty society. The new constitution introduced by Carol II steered the country in a new direction: freedom of speech disappeared and political parties were banned. In this essay I intend to investigate and present how the collapse of democracy was possible in Romania after the general elections of 1937. To achieve this goal I decided to present and analyze some political articles selected from the most important newspapers of the time. By paying attention to the way in which those articles were written, one can find a useful and efficient tool in elucidating the political background of that period. The disappearance of democracy was unthinkable for most political leaders and journalists of the time. Both were unable to see the danger of losing the democratic system. This fact explains both why democracy collapsed so quickly and why political leaders did not do anything to stop the process.

Keywords – General elections, Carol II, political parties, democracy, newspapers, political violence, rhetoric

 

Silviu Taraş, Festivals and Collective Mentalities during the Transition Period (1944–1948) in Covasna County, p. 705

Abstract – The paper is an analysis of festivals and celebrations in a period when communism was the agenda setter in the different domains of society. Festivals are regarded as ritualized acts of political socialization, often denoted in the scholarship by the term calendric public ritual. The concept of rite/ritual is employed for a culturally standardized repetitive social activity, symbolic in nature and with an influence on human behavior. The interpretation of festivals includes the analysis of their content, forms of manifestation and employed symbols, and the systemic framework of the interpretation is dictated by the typology of the festivals. We consider the meaning of a symbol, of a representation constructed by the festival, as an outcome of the relationship between a distinct representation and the full spectrum of the ritualized public representations of a society. Whereas most of the scholarship on collective memory and mentalities chose to follow the facile mode of writing history by describing the symbolic apparatus and the constructed representations, thus ignoring the problem of reception, this investigation aims to address this issue by considering the intertwined nature of meaning as structured by the semantic field of symbols.

Keywords – Communism, ritual, festivals, minorities.

 

Mihaela Teodor, Revue de Transylvanie between 1945 and 1947—Efforts to Continue the Publication, p. 717

AbstractThe publication as well as the cancellation of the Revue de Transylvanie was crucially influenced by the anti-revisionist battle. The last phase of the journal’s publication, 1943-1945, which constitutes the subject of this study, was one of the most difficult ones, given the tough economic situation of the cultural institutions during the war and mostly the political changes of the post-war period. Through a contents analysis of new archive documents, discovered in the collection of the Ministry of National Propaganda belonging to the Central Historical National Archives, I will try to present the approaches adopted by the leaders of the Center for Studies and Research regarding Transylvania for the last two issues of the journal; the efforts made to ensure its publication after 6 March 1945; the moment of its cancellation and the pretext of the authorities, as well as the real reason for suspending it. As regards the real reasons for cancelling the publication, there are several hypotheses. First and the most plausible, given the modification of the national policies of the Romanian pro-communist government, more oriented towards encouraging the Romanian-Hungarian relationships, is the explanation that an anti-revisionist publication was no longer desirable.

Keywords – Revue de Transylvanie, anti-revisionist publication, censor, cancellation, archive document

 

István Polgár, A Romanian Historiographic Approach in the Spirit of the Marxist-Leninist Ideology (1948–1960), p. 733

Abstract – The Romanian perception on the Romanian-Hungarian relations in the historiography of the communist time developed from the “proletarian internationalism” of 1948-1960, when Romanian-Hungarian brotherhood and understanding in work and daily life were imposed from above, to the “national communism” of 1960-1989, when the Romanian-Hungarian political conflicts from the first half of the 20th century were shown and explained closer to the reality of the time. The new orientation of Romanian historiography was facilitated by the forces holding the power, which purged the former academic elite, particularly its outstanding members with no left-wing orientation, and replaced them with obedient characters usually recruited from among the mediocre specialists, to say the least. Most were inexperienced people lacking any solid or significant scientific activity, but all driven by the same propensity to serve the new regime.

Keywords – Marxism, Leninism,Transylvania, Communism, Romania

 

Ioan Tomoiagă, Considérations sur le rôle de l’affiche dans la stratégie communicationnelle du communisme en Roumanie (1945-1965), p.743

Abstract – The political poster is one of the means of propaganda used by the Romanian communist regime after 1945. First conceived as a graphic work and then imprinted and multiplied, the communist poster represented an instrument used to broadcast the persuasive and manipulator messages, aiming at the adhesion of Romanian population to the politics of the Communist (Labor) Party. The themes and language of this mass-communication agent belong to the totalitarian communication strategy, having a different specificity and a moderate psychological impact compared to other means of totalitarian propaganda. Using poster to spread Marxist-Leninist ideology, but also to popularize “grand achievements of the popular regime” represented only one aspect of the phenomenon of propaganda in Romania. The research of this visual fret instrument is just at the beginning. This study uses different sources of documentation, such as: elective posters, graphic works, economy-based posters, pacifist posters etc., from diverse branches of the University’s Central Library “Lucian Blaga”, of the National Art Museum and of the National History Museum “Transylvania”, all from Cluj-Napoca.

Keywords –  Poster, communism, propaganda, visual uproar, chromatic language.

 

Claudiu Petru Rusu, L’analyse du processus de construction et de définition de la «  nation socialiste » : Développée dans la Roumanie communiste dans les années ’50, p. 755

AbstractThe analysis of the construction process and the definition of “socialist nation” developed in communist Romania in the ’50s – The ideological meaning and redefinition of concepts and theories, that form the main body of investigation in the social sciences, has the purpose to validate and legitimate a series of political, economic and social mutation. This was always at the epicenter of studies by ideologues on the Romanian communist regime. The conceptual and explicative analysis on the birth of the national idea in Romania from 1948 onward is a reflection on this conditioning between the ideological principles and semantic interpretations of the constitutive elements on the above named national idea. Our endeavor is to make sense on the main levels in which the communist theorist have tried to bring forth a new meaning for words – nation, nationalism, patriotism, country, internationalism - and also on what was the extent of the political context on defining the above terms. We will start by underlying the paradigm used in the 1950’s by the communist ideologues, which states that a radical overhaul of the economic brings forth a new social composition of nations, the inclusion/exclusion factor being resolved on social basis.

 Keywords – Nation, nationalism, socialist-nation, communist régime, Romania.

 

Dumitru-Cătălin Rogojanu, Vasile Ciolpan: The Biography and the Physical, Behavioural and Moral Profile of a Communist Torturer—Several Historical and Psychohistorical Aspects, p. 765

AbstractThrough this study we aim to reconstitute the convoluted biography of the communist torturer Vasile Ciolpan, former warden of the Sighet Penitentiary between 1950 and 1955, and the way in which he insinuated himself, without any remorse, into different social positions in Romanian society, from 1956 until his death in 2004. Emphasizing the change of perspective from a history partially counterfeited by the official documents of the communist regime towards a “democratic memory,” and basing our research on various sources, ranging from archival documents, general and specific works, to studies and articles, memoirs and even documentaries, we intend to capture, in broad lines, Ciolpan’s physical and moral portrait, his language, the psychological motivation of his behavior and the manner in which they were reflected in the actions he undertook during his period as head of the Sighet prison. From a methodological point of view, we have adopted a distinct research approach—positioned between history and the psychology of history (psychohistory)—to the issue of Romanian communist torturers. Also, by embarking upon a critical and rigorous examination of the multitude of sources available, our scientific attempt is centered not only on a descriptive analysis of Ciolpan’s biographical profile, but also on the hermeneutical analysis of several historical facts and events in which he was involved.

Keywords – Biography, communist torturer Vasile Ciolpan, Vasile Ciolpan’s profile, historical and psychohistorical aspects, communist concentration universe, Sighet prison.

 

Ilarion Ţiu, National Government of Vienna—Political Component, p. 777

Abstract – The National Government in Vienna—The Political Component – The National Government in Vienna was set up at the end of 1944, on the initiative of Germany, with the assistance of the legionary emigration in the Reich. Through this executive in exile the Nazi leaders were aiming to cause turmoil behind the front lines after the coup d’Etat o

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