Russia and Germany, 1914-1945
Prof. M. David-Fox, [email protected]
Course Description. This course focuses attention on one of the most consequential
relationships of modern history, between Russia/USSR and Germany during what Eric
Hobsbawm called the “age of extremes” and Arno Mayer termed the “thirty years crisis” of the
twentieth century. Focusing in particular on new approaches to the two countries that go under
the rubric of “transnational” and “entangled” history, the course also looks at the state of the
art in comparative history. The focus on Russian-German interactions—which include
rejections, repudiations, and misunderstandings as well as mutual influences, transfers, and
exchanges—is pursued in many areas. These range from the military, political, and economic
spheres to the realms of culture, intellectual life, and ideology.
Introductory Meeting. Methodologies and Approaches.
Initial discussion:
Comparative vs. transnational vs. “entangled” histories. Definitions and approaches.
“The Age of Extremes” from 1914-1945
What does transnational history offer? Does it complement or contract comparative history?
Challenges of Doing Comparative History
Types of entanglements and border crossings
Goals and requirements of this course
Second Meeting: “Ober Ost”: Germany’s War in the East, 1914-1918.
Required Reading:
Mark Mazower, “Germans and Slavs: 1848-1918,” chap. 1 of Hitler’s Empire: How the Nazis
Ruled Europe (New York: Penguin, 2008): 15-30.
Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius, War Land on the Eastern Front: Culture, National Identity, and German
Occupation in World War I, chap. 2 (“The Military Utopia”), pp. 54-88.
Topics:
Total war as a watershed in German, Russian, and European history
German views of the “East,” Space, and Race
German Plans and Occupation in the East in WWI
Third Meeting: Russia’s Continuum of Crisis, 1914-21
Required Reading:
Peter Holquist, “Violent Russia, Deadly Marxism? Russia in the Epoch of Violence,” Kritika:
Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 4, 3 (2003): 627-52.
Topics:
1914-21 as a Continuum of Crisis: Implications
Russia’s Distinctiveness and Comparability in the Era of Total War
Interconnections and Differences: 1917 and 1918
The German war economy (Kriegswirtschaft) and its influence on “War Communism”
Fourth Meeting: Weimar/NEP: Cultural and Intellectual Exchange
Required Reading:
Michael David-Fox, “Leftists versus Nationalists in Soviet-Weimar Cultural Diplomacy:
Showcases, Fronts, and Boomerangs,” in Susan Gross Solomon, ed., Doing Medicine Together:
Germany and Russia between the Wars (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2006): 103-158.
Topics:
Weimar Germany and NEP Russia
The Avant-Garde
Travelers and Cultural Diplomacy
The “Eastern Orientation” after Rapallo
The German Far Right (“National Bolshevism”) and Soviet Communism
Fifth Meeting: The Stalin Revolution and The Nazi Revolution: Political Systems and
Ideologies
Required Reading:
Yorham Gorlizki and Hans Mommsen, “The Political (Dis)Orders of Stalinism and National
Socialism,” in Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism Compared, ed. Michael Geyer and
Sheila Fitzpatrick (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009): 41-86.
Peter Fritzsche and Jochen Hellbeck, “The New Man in Stalinist Russia and Nazi Germany,” in
Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism Compared, ed. Michael Geyer and Sheila
Fitzpatrick (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009): 302-344.
Topics:
The Concept of Totalitarianism and its Critics
The Comparison between Stalinism and National Socialism: Political Systems
Class and Race: Ideologies, their Nature, their Impact
Sixth Meeting: Population Politics and Social Engineering
Required Reading:
David L. Hoffmann and Anette F. Timm, “Utopian Biopolitics: Reproductive Policies, Gender
Roles, and Sexuality in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union,” in Beyond Totalitarianism:
Stalinism and Nazism Compared, ed. Michael Geyer and Sheila Fitzpatrick (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2009):
Christopher Browning and Lewis Siegelbaum, “Frameworks for Social Engineering: Stalinist
Schema of Identification and the Nazi Volksgemeinschaft,” in Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism
and Nazism Compared, ed. Michael Geyer and Sheila Fitzpatrick (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 2009): 231-265.
Topics:
Internal and External Enemies: Theory and Practice
Attempts to Create the New Society: Successes and Failures
Social Policies and Social Engineering
Seventh Meeting: Images of the Other
Required Reading:
Katerina Clark and Karl Schlögel, “Mutual Perceptions and Projections: Stalin’s Russia in Nazi
Germany – Nazi Germany in the Soviet Union,” in Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism
Compared, ed. Michael Geyer and Sheila Fitzpatrick (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,
2009): 396-441.
Topics:
“Judeo-Bolshevism,” Marxist-Leninist Understandings of Fascism
Soviet and German Intellectuals
The International Dimensions of Stalinist Culture
German Emigration in the USSR; Pan-European Anti-Fascist Culture
The Great Terror and Foreigners
The Nazi-Soviet Pact
Eighth Meeting: ‘Absolute’ War on the Eastern Front
Required Reading:
Mark Edele and Michael Geyer, “States of Exception: The Nazi-Soviet War as a System of
Violence, 1939-1945,” in Beyond Totalitarianism: Stalinism and Nazism Compared, ed. Michael
Geyer and Sheila Fitzpatrick (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009): 345-395.
Michael David-Fox, “Razmyshleniia o stalinizme, voine i nasilii,” in Oleg Budnitskii and Liudmila
Novikova, eds., SSSR vo Vtoroi mirovoi voine: Okkupatsiia. Kholokost. Stalinizm (Moscow:
ROSSPEN, 2014): 176-195.
Topics:
German Plans and Occupied Territories
Types of Violence, Escalations of Violence
Soviet Depictions of the Holocaust and Nazi Atrocities
Wartime Propaganda: Differences in Approach
Re-Sovietization in Light of German Occupation/Colonization
WWII as a Watershed in Soviet History
Final Assignment: Submit a book review of one of the recommended readings below.
Recommended Readings
Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius, War Land on the Eastern Front: Culture, National Identity, and German
Occupation in World War I (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000).
Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius, The German Myth of the East: 1800 to the Present (Oxford: Oxford University
Press, 2009).
Герд Кёнен. Между страхом и восхищением. "Российский комплекс" в сознании немцев. 19001945 (М.: РОССПЭН, 2010).
Оксана Нагорная, Другой военный опыт: русские военнопленные в Германии в период Первой
мировой войны (1914-1922). (М.: Новый хронограф, 2010).
Eric Lohr, Nationalizing the Russian Empire: The Campaign against Enemy Aliens during World War I
(Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2003), also in Russian.
Peter Holquist, Making War, Forging Revolution: Russia's Continuum of Crisis, 1914-1921 (Cambridge:
Harvard University Press, 2002)
Annmarie H. Sammartino, The Impossible Border: Germany and the East, 1914-1922 (Ithaca: Cornell
University Press, 2010).
C. Журавлев, «Маленькие люди» и «большая история». Иностранцы московского Электрозавода
в советском обществе 1920-1930-х гг. (М.: РОССПЭН, 2000).
M. David-Fox et al., eds., Fascination and Enmity: Russia and Germany as Entangled Histories, 1914-1945
(Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012).
Peter Fritzsche, Germans into Nazis (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998).
Peter Fritzsche, Life and Death in the Third Reich (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2008).
Michael Wildt, An Uncomproming Generation: The Nazi Leadership of the Reich Security Main Office
(Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2009), trans. of Generation des Unbedinkten.
Карл Шлёгель, Берлин, Восточный вокзал. Русская эмиграция в Германии между двумя войнами
(1919—1945). (М.: Новое литературное обозрение, 2004), translation of Berlin, Ostbahnhof Europas.
Карл Шлёгель, Tеррор и мечта. Москва 1937 (М.: РОССПЭН, 2011 [История сталинизма]).
Timothy Snyder, Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin (New York: Basic Books, 2010).
Mark Mazower, Hitler’s Empire: How the Nazis Ruled Europe (New York: Penguin, 2008).
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Michael David-Fox, “Razmyshleniia o stalinizme, voine i nasilii,”