The Hungarian Historical Review invites submissions for its second issue in 2015, the theme of which will be “Cultures of War: Experiences, Images, and Memories” in the late medieval and early modern period (1400-1800).
The deadline for the submission of abstracts (max. 500 word): September 30, 2014
The deadline for sending articles (max. 10.000 words): February 15, 2015
The volume is intended to provide a collection of essays that represent pioneering new advances, from methodological and thematic perspectives, in the study of the cultural history of wars in East Central Europe from the late medieval period to the end of the eighteenth century. Adopting the expression introduced by John Keegan (The Face of Battle), who triggered the “cultural turn” in the study of the histories of war, the essays will attempt to depict the faces of war. The intention is to offer insights from various perspectives into aspects of war that have been neglected. The focus will therefore be on the experiences and memories of contemporary agents.
We invite essays that focus on issues such as: How did participants perceive and interpret the violence of war and their own roles in it? Why did they write about their experiences afterwards? What kinds of survival strategies did peasants, citizens and nobleman develop amidst the everyday experiences of brutality, devastation and death? How was extreme cruelty remembered, and how was war experienced by women (with regards both to incidences of violence such as rape, but also everyday questions of survival and the renegotiations of shifting social positions)?
In addition to the sources on which historians of war have traditionally drawn, we are particularly interested in essays that devote attention to narrative sources. As personal accounts were produced subsequently, war experiences are constructed through the process of remembering. Did the terrors of war make it possible for individuals to portray their life histories in linear narratives? Post-war efforts to remember and forget and the appropriations of the memory of war also deserve close scrutiny. How did reality and mythology (about the extreme brutality of the enemy, for instance) blend in individual memory and in the cultural memories of communities? It would also be interesting to identify forms of expression of cultural memory, including not only monuments but also local rituals of remembrance.
Alongside the experiences and representations of suffering, destruction and violence, wars have also been perceived as events of cultural exchange and transcultural interaction. Thus it is interesting to study situations in which, in multi-confessional regions and on the borders of the Christian and Islamic worlds, wars involved encounters between different cultures. How did individuals develop various strategies with which to turn both the perils and the possibilities inherent in these encounters to their own advantage?
The images of war and violence with regard to both the visual arts and narrative sources, modes of textualization in poetry, pamphleteering and historiography are also of primary interest. How did early modern chroniclers portray collective violence and the enemy? It would also be worthwhile to examine the ways in which the images of the war related to, used or reinterpreted written discourses. A new analysis of the texts of peace treatises, for instance, could shed some light on the changing concepts of war, violence and the enemy.
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