Consumption Constrained:Austerity and Rationing in the 20th Century
26 – 28 August 2006 in Tartu, Estonia
Call for Papers
A meeting is being organised to coincide with the close of the XIV International Economic History Congress in Helsinki in August 2006. Its subject will be 'Consumption Constrained: Austerity and Rationing in the 20th Century', and it is hoped that the proximity of the two events will help to attract emerging and established scholars with an interest in this subject to the University of Tartu, Estonia, for a period of energetic reflection and debate.
The twentieth century has witnessed a multitude of attempts in different national settings to constrain consumption with a view to the fulfilment of a variety of different economic agendas. Usually this has happened in response to a perceived state of crisis such as that brought about by the prosecution of war, or the assumption of power by authoritarian regimes or by occupying powers. These and other extraordinary circumstances have given rise to measures intended to conserve supplies, to re-direct resources (to re-armament or industrialisation, for example), to maintain survival rations, or to ensure the fair distribution of goods.
The scope and shape of such schemes, their relative success or failure, the modes of their subversion, and their intended and unintended consequences might all provide useful starting points for discussion. It is hoped to explore a range of historical moments and geographical contexts, as well as different political frameworks and ideologies. These could include the USSR 1920-22 or 1941-45, Europe during World War I or II, South America or the Middle East.
Proposals are welcomed which address any of the following or related themes.
• Meanings of austerity, nation-building and foundation legends
• Commonalities and disparities; democracies and dictatorships
• Illicit activities, survival strategies, the 'black market'
• Standards of living and product standards
• State measures and acts of resistance; adaptation
The organising team are Olaf Mertelsmann (Tartu), Orit Rozin (Tel Aviv) and Lesley Whitworth (Brighton).
Tartu is located 185 km south of the Estonian capital Tallinn and might be reached during five hours from Helsinki. It is a true university town with approximately 100,000 inhabitants.
Please send proposals of no more than 350 words and a short CV to: email@example.com by 15 May 2006.
Centre for the Study of Soviet History
University of Tartu
Estonia Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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