DG - Europe
Wer war wer in der DDR? Ein Lexikon ostdeutscher Biographien [Who was Who in the GDR? A Lexicon of East German Biographies]. Helmut Müller-Enbergs. 5th expanded ed. 2 vols. Berlin: Links, 2010. 1604 p. 21 cm. ISBN 978-3- 86153-561-4: EUR 49.90
The year 2009 was the “annus mirabilis”—the 20th anniversary of the peaceful revolution of 1989/90 in Germany. Many events to mark this anniversary were conducted domestically and abroad and sparked people’s general interest in the historical study of the GDR. This was reason enough for the editors to publish a 5th edition of this lexicon (for a review of the 4th edition see RREA 12:350). This new edition includes an additional 801 biographies, as well as updated biographies and bibliographical references.
The two volumes were published in cooperation with the Bundesstiftung zur Aufarbeitung der SED-Diktatur [Federal Foundation for the Assessment of the Dictatorship of the Socialist Unity Party]. The content of the work is also available on their home page (http://stiftung-aufarbeitung.de). [sh/mr]
Braunbuch DDR: Nazis in der DDR [Brown Book GDR: Nazi Sympathizers in the German Democratic Republic]. Olaf Kappelt. 2d ed. Berlin: Berlin Historica, 2009. 588 p. ill. 22 cm. ISBN 978-3-939929-12-3: EUR 49.80
The first edition of the Braunbuch DDR was a response to the East German publication Braunbuch: Kriegs- und Naziverbrecher in der Bundesrepublik [Brown Book: War- and Nazi Criminals in the Federal Republic] (Berlin [East], 1965). Kappelt’s work drew the ire of the East German State Security Office: his research dispelled the GDR-promoted notion that its political and managerial elite included no former Nazi party members or others who had filled leading positions in the Third Reich because, unlike the Federal Republic, the new antifascist state on German territory supposedly had forbidden such continuities in personnel. The Braunbuch DDR demonstrated that this was not the case.
Thanks to new resources that became accessible after reunification of the two Germanies, Kappelt was able to pursue further research and considerably expand the second edition of his work. It now presents a collection of some 950 profiles, as well as a list of 107 reference sources. The profiles offer information on professions, political activities, party memberships, and birth and death dates, and there are separate listings for activity before and after 1945. Most of the ex-Nazis (in total a relatively small number) who attained high office in the GDR are also profiled in Wer war wer in der DDR? (see RREA 15/16:191), but the Braunbuch often gives more detailed information. [sh/gw]
Lexikon Fränkischer Ortsnamen: Herkunft und Bedeutung: Oberfranken, Mittelfranken, Unterfranken [Dictionary of Franconian Place Names: Origins and Meanings: Upper Franconia, Middle Franconia, and Lower Franconia. Wolf-Armin, Baron of Reitzenstein. München: Beck, 2009. 288 p. maps. 25 cm. ISBN 978-3-406-59131-0: EUR 29.90
The author, a prominent expert on place and river names in Bavaria and a lecturer for onomastics at the Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich, published the Lexikon bayerischer Ortsnamen (see RREA 12:243) in 2006, which was proceeded by earlier versions in 1986 and 1991. The 2006 publication was divided into regions and thereby also included Franconia, but in the end its title is confusing because of the adjective for Bavaria, which could refer to either the state of Bavaria or the Bavarian dialect. This will be rectified with the publication of dictionaries for the various regional dialects within Bavaria, starting with this volume for Franconia. Each entry carefully traces the etymology and history of the place name. It is clear that extra effort has been given to accurate dating, and entries include a chronological listing of textual attestations for the place names. This attention to historical detail in the Lexikon Fränkischer Ortsnamen is a helpful supplement to the corresponding volumes of the Handbuch der historischen Stätten: Bayern (see RREA 12:242), which give only superficial information about the first mention of a place name. This volume also includes nine maps. [sh/ldb]
Zu Unrecht vergessen: Künstler im München des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts [Unjustly Forgotten: Artists in 19th- and 20th-Century Munich]. Ed. President and Directors of the Bayerische Akademie der Schönen Künste. Göttingen: Wallstein- Verlag, 2009. 233 p. ill. music. 22 cm. (Kleine Bibliothek der Bayerischen Akademie der Schönen Künste, 3). ISBN 978-3-8353-0529-8: EUR 22
This small volume consisting of 12 biographies of artists and musicians active in Munich during the 19th and 20th centuries is the print version of a series of lectures delivered in conjunction with the celebration of the 850th anniversary of the founding of the city. Two of the 12 persons profiled are composers, six are writers, and four are applied or fine artists.
Reflecting their origin as lectures, the portraits vary in length and breadth. Some have references, others do not. Only one has a bibliography of works. There is a detailed section of biographical notes on pages 225-232. The aim of this work is to pique interest in the artists profiled. For more comprehensive information, standard biographical reference works must be consulted. [sh/jb]
Spätes Gedenken: ein Geschichtsverein erinnert sich seiner ausgeschlossenen jüdischen Mitglieder [Belated Memorial: A Historical Society Remembers its Excluded Jewish Members]. Joist Grolle and Matthias Schmoock. Bremen: Edition Temmen, 2009. 283 p. ill. 22 cm. (Hamburgische Lebensbilder, 21). ISBN 978-3-8378-2000-3: EUR 2.90
At the beginning of the Nazis’ rise to power, the Verein für Hamburgische Geschichte [Hamburg History Society] included 46 Jewish members. Twenty-eight of them resigned between 1933 and 1937 in reaction to the growing ostracism of Jews in Germany. A further 18 were excluded in 1938 after an amendment to the bylaws, designed to “mainstream” the Society (which had been considered “recalcitrant”) resulted in a change in the chairmanship. That the Society’s “brown phase” had been brushed over and not factually assessed for many years does not distinguish it from other associations.
In November 2007 the Society held a memorial meeting to honor those members who had earlier been excluded. This volume offers revised and expanded versions of the seven talks given at that event. They cover: lawyer and member of parliament Max Eichholz, 1881-1943 (died in Auschwitz); Felix Epstein, employee of the M.M. Warburg Bank, 1882-1982; “Germany’s first female professor of Germanistic Studies” Agathe Lasch, 1879-1942 (deported to Riga), about whom several pieces have recently been published (see RREA 15/16:39); Leo Lippmann, “career bureaucrat in the German empire” and councilor of state during the Weimar Republic, 1881-1943 (committed suicide); Eduard Rosenbaum, attorney, director of the Hamburg Commerce Library, and author of a history of the M.M. Warburg Bank, 1887-1979; the “historian and polymath” Richard Salomon, 1884-1966, who built up the Hamburg University Department of East European Studies and who later taught in the United States (emigrated); and the banker (and brother of Aby M. Warburg) Max Warburg, 1867-1946, who never returned to Hamburg from a 1938 visit to the United States.
The biographies are based largely on archive materials, which are listed together with secondary literature in the extensive notes (p. 214-242). The interesting volume closes with a list of contributors and a name index. [sh/nb]
Biographisches Lexikon für Mecklenburg [Biographical Encyclopedia for Mecklenburg]. Ed. Sabine Pettke. Rostock: Schmidt-Römhild. 24 cm. (Veröffentlichungen der Historischen Kommission für Mecklenburg, Reihe A).
Vol. 5. 2009. 339 p. ill. ISBN 978-3-7950-3746-8: EUR 29.50
The volumes in this biographical encyclopedia, which began publication in 1995, are coming out on average every three years, which is good value, compared with other regional biography collections. (The earlier volumes were reviewed in IFB 99-B09-533, 00-1/4-409, and 05-1-228.) With the 69 persons in this volume, 225 people born in Mecklenburg and active there or elsewhere have been honored. Again the articles average four and one-half pages, including a portrait. In addition to Ernst Barlach, one finds others whom one might not have expected, such as the author Hans Fallada, the translator Erika Fuchs, the airplane builder Ernst Heinkel, and Rudolph Karstadt, whose department store chain started in Wismar. Others include representatives of the Mecklenburg dynasty, estate owners from the Pogge family, politicians, historians, and six women. The expanded information at the start of the articles and the detailed genealogical information are especially valuable, as are the citations of sources, secondary works, and portraits at the end of the articles. Most of the subjects in this volume were active in the 19th and 20th centuries. There is a cumulative index at the end, and again one wishes for a cumulative chronologically arranged index of professions. [sh/gh]
Biographisches Lexikon für Ostfriesland [Biographical Dictionary for East Friesland]. Ed. Martin Tielke for the East Frisian Cultural Parliament. Aurich: Ostfriesische Landschaftliche Verlags- und Vertriebsgesellschaft. 25 cm. (Ostfriesische Landschaft, Abt. Verlag, Postfach 1580, D-26585 Aurich, fax 04941/179975)
Vol. 4. 2007. 472 p. ISBN 3-932206-62-2: EUR 35
The Biographisches Lexikon für Ostfriesland is one of the finest German reference works of its type, so the fact that the current volume has taken longer to appear than the previous ones can be attributed to the low-hanging fruit, as it were, having already been plucked and the lesser-known historical figures requiring more research to uncover their secrets. Previous volumes appeared in 1993, 1997 (see IFB 99-B09-556), and 2001 (see RREA 8: 256). This is increasingly the case for the remaining notables selected for biographical treatment, as the authors maintain their intention to close the series with volume 5. The number of entries (183 in this volume) is comparable to that of the previous volumes and keeps the series on track for a final figure of around 900. As with the previous volumes, a cumulative index is provided. [sh/gw]
Schaumburger Nazionalsozialisten: Täter, Komplizen, Profiteure [Nazi Leaders in Schaumburg: Perpetrators, Accomplices, Profiteers]. Ed. Frank Werner. 2d ed. Bielefeld: Verlag für Regionalgeschichte, 2010. 663 p. ill. 25 cm. (Kulturlandschaft Schaumburg, 17). ISBN 978-3-89534-877-8: EUR 29
The use of regional biographical investigation to illumine the nature and context of Nazi rule has become quite familiar, but new fields continue to emerge. The present volume tackles a relatively small area of inquiry, namely the principality of Schaumburg-Lippe and Grafschaft [Earldom] Schaumburg, a nearby Landkreis [county] that had been part of the Prussian Empire. Both districts reported to Alfred Meyer, the governor of the region, and his activities both as a provincial administrator and a deputy commander in Eastern Europe are examined. Other local functionaries are profiled as well, including mayors and party officials. Articles on the work of informers, boycotters, and violent criminals complete the picture. [jli/gw]
Westfälische Lebensbilder [Westphalian Biographies]. Münster: Aschendorff. 24 cm. (Veröffentlichungen der Historischen Kommission für Westfalen, ...).
Vol. 18. 2009. 197 p. ill. (..., 17A). ISBN 978-3-402-15111-2: EUR 24
This latest volume of the series appeared in July 2009, a mere four years after its most recent predecessor, an acceptable interval for a biographical series of this kind, considering that intervals between the appearances of earlier volumes in the series had, on occasion, stretched to as many as 10 years (see RREA 12:229). Unlike volume 17, which included biographies of only 20th-century persons, the current volume reaches as far back as the 16th century with a biography of Paderborn mayor Liborius Wichard. Of the remaining nine biographies, five are of 19th-century figures. Three of these are thematically linked, in that they played prominent roles in the religious conflicts of that era known collectively as the Kulturkampf. The volume is rounded out by four biographies of 20th- century persons, including, notably, German President Heinrich Lübke.
The extensive bibliography of sources and further readings accompanying each biography should serve as a model for other biographical series of this kind—no less so the useful and thorough index of personal, geographic, and corporate names. Unfortunately, a cumulative index to all volumes in the series is still lacking. Two further improvements to be made: the addition of birth- and death-dates and field-of-activity in the headers; and a directory of contributors with reference to the biographies which they authored. [sh/kst]
Essen von A bis Z: Wissenswertes in 1500 Stichworten über Geschichte, Kunst und Kultur [Essen from A to Z: All You Need to Know About its History, Art, and Culture in 1,500 Short Summaries]. Thomas Dupke, and Dirk F. Paßmann, Heike Schupetta. Münster: Aschendorff, 2009. 414 p. ill. 19 cm. + 1 insert. ISBN 978-3-402-00238-4: EUR 14.80
The “... from A to Z” series of city profiles began with Münster in 2000 (see RREA 7:301), followed by Aachen in 2003 (see RREA 10:246), Paderborn in 2006 (see RREA 12:251), and Bielefeld and Osnabrück in 2007 (see IFB 07-2-607 & 608). Unlike these previous works, the volume for Essen coincides (no doubt intentionally) with a major European exposition taking place there in 2010. But like the others, Essen from A to Z offers 1,500 short articles covering the history, art, and culture of the city, as well as notable structures, monuments, businesses, roads, etc., and personages from the past. Although the author models his work on the scholarly Stadtlexikon Nürnberg (see RREA 8:248), the target audience for this and the other “A to Z” dictionaries is popular rather than scholarly. An appendix includes a relatively extensive list of sources used, a city chronology, a history of the Krupp family, and lists of persons and institutions that featured in Essen history, such as abbesses of the Essen convent, coal mine companies, and large farmsteads in the area. [sh/gw]
Köpfe der Ruhr: 200 Jahre Industriegeschichte und Strukturwandel im Lichte von Biografien [Heads of the Ruhr: 200 Years of Industrial History and Structural Change in Light of Biographies]. Georg W. Oesterdiekhoff and Hermann Strasser. Essen: Klartext-Verlag, 2009. 378 p. 23 cm. ISBN 978-3-8375-0036-3 EUR 22
Köpfe der Ruhr does not offer biographies in the traditional sense. Rather, the authors use biographical material to portray 200 years of industrial history and structural transformation in the Ruhr. Five chapters cover the eras 1820-1870, 1870-1914, 1914- 1945, 1945-1968, and post-1968. These chapters follow a uniform structure, which includes notable transformations; the development of the middle and lower classes; circumstances, lifestyles and attitudes of the lower classes; as well as comparisons of the realms of experience among the social classes. The last chapter draws conclusions about changes in the Ruhr area via a biographical lens over successive generations, as well as about the changes within the middle and lower classes. An appendix explains the methodological problems encountered and offers some reflections. The bibliography (p. 361-377) contains few biographies, instead emphasizing titles of method and methodological issues. A “List of Biographies” (p. 358-359) includes, in chronological order, the names, professions, and birth and death dates of the 50 people whose lives provided source material for this work. [sh/jmw]
Protestantische Profile im Ruhrgebiet: 500 Lebensbilder aus 5 Jahrhunderten [Protestant Profiles in the Ruhr Area: 500 Portraits from Five Centuries]. Ed. Michael Basse. Kamen: Spenner, 2009. 717 p. ill. 22 cm. ISBN 978-3-89991- 092-6: EUR 29.80
The series Christen an der Ruhr [Christians in the Ruhr] seeks to highlight the contributions of Christians born in the historically significant industrial Ruhr area in northwest Germany who have played a decisive role in this region or elsewhere, as well as those who have come to the Ruhr from the outside and left a lasting mark on the area. This fourth volume in the series differs from the preceding three volumes (see RREA 12:252) in two aspects. First, even though the majority of Ruhr inhabitants are Catholic, this volume limits itself to only those with a Protestant religious affiliation (Lutherans, Reformed, Unitarians, and others). Second, it includes a greater number of historical figures—500 compared with the 47 discussed in the preceding three volumes. Thus, the biographies are much briefer than those in the earlier volumes. The work is introduced by a two-part history of Protestantism in the Ruhr: the period before the Rhenish-Westphalian Church Ordinance of 1835 and the period from 1835 to the present. This is followed by 500 short biographies, chronologically arranged, of Protestants from varying professional backgrounds, predominantly historical figures of the 19th and 20th centuries, but also some still living who are above the age of 80. This is a well-done publication, of interest to anyone interested in the history of the Ruhr district, particularly its religious history. [sh/akb]
Sächsische Lebensbilder [Saxon Life Portraits]. Leipzig: Verlag der Sächsischen Akademie der Wissenschaften; Stuttgart: Steiner. 22 cm. (Quellen und Forschungen zur sächsischen Geschichte, ...).
Vol. 6, Parts 1-2. 2009. Ed. Gerald Wiemers. viii, 871 p. ill. (..., 33). ISBN 978-3-515-09383-5: EUR 106
The 2009 appearance of the sixth volume of Sächsische Lebensbilder coincides with the 600th anniversary of the founding of the University of Leipzig. (See RREA 15/16:156 and 157, for other works on the University’s 600th anniversary). Volume 6 of Sächsische Lebensbilder is in two parts and has more than twice as many entries as either volume 4 (see IFB 00-1/4-412) or volume 5 (see IFB 04-1-356; volumes 1-3 of this work were published between 1930 and 1941). This volume covers 40 prominent figures from the 17th through the 21st centuries, including one woman, bringing the total number of biographies to 179 for these six volumes. A weakness of the volume is the inconsistency in the format of the articles and the lack of a cumulative index for the previous volumes (an index for the first five volumes can be found in volume 5). A foreword notes that the next volume will cover “special persons” from the Early Modern Period. [sh/ldb]
Serbska bibliografija = Sorbische Bibliographie [Sorbian Bibliography] Bautzen: Domowina-Verlag. 24 cm. (Schriften des Sorbischen Instituts, ...). 2001/2005. Series ed. Franc Šen. 2008. 526 p. (..., 47). ISBN 978-3-7420-2105-2: EUR 24.90
The geography of this small region, Lusatia (Lausitz, Lužyca, Lužica), is complex. Lower Lusatia (Dolna Lužyca) is located in the German state of Brandenburg; Upper Lusatia (Hornja Lužica) is located mainly in the state of Saxony, with its far eastern part in Poland across the Lusatian Neisse River. Major cities include Cottbus (Chósebuz), Bautzen (Budyšin), and Görlitz (Zhorjelc; in Polish, Zgorzelec. The Serbska bibliografija is thus of importance to the regional bibliography of these two German federal states and, not least, also important to Sorbian national bibliography and to Slavic studies.
The previous three quinquennial installments were reviewed in RREA 10:249, RREA 7:310, and RREO 95-1-139 (RREA 1:545). The 2001/2005 volume contains 8,496 numbered titles, compared with 7,607 titles in the 1996/2000 volume. A new feature is the inclusion of references to titles in previous volumes. The author and personal-name indexes are continued from previous volumes, but there is still no subject index. Subject headings are lacking in the bibliographic records, so that even the search interface of the open-access Serbska bibliografija (http://126.96.36.199/si-bib) has limited subjectsearch capability. The on-line bibliography covers imprints from 1986-2005, plus a selection of more current titles. The Serbska bibliografija is also accessible through the Wurttemberg State Library’s Regional Bibliography page (http://www.wlb-stuttgart. de/literatursuche/literatursuche-ueberregional/regionalbibliographien). [sh/ga]
Flensburger Köpfe: Frauen und Männer aus der Stadtgeschichte [Flensburg Notables: Women and Men of the City’s History]. Bernd Philipsen. Glücksburg: Baltica- Verlag, 2009. 103 p. ill. 21 cm. (Kleine Reihe der Gesellschaft für Flensburger Stadtgeschichte, 36). ISBN 978-3-934097-36-0: EUR 10.90
This collection of biographical sketches is based on a series of articles published in the local newspaper to commemorate Flensburg’s 725th anniversary. For this book, the 38 articles have been significantly expanded. The biographies are arranged chronologically and are accompanied by portraits. The best-known “notable” in this book is the most recent, the pioneering sex-trade icon Beate Uhse. Oddly, her profile offers neither birth nor death date, only the fact that she reached the age of 81. The articles lack references, but there is a bibliography, which serves to lead the reader to more rewarding sources, such as the Biographisches Lexikon für Schleswig-Holstein (see RREA 12:233), which provides solid information about Flensburg. [sh/gw]
Neue Lübecker Lebensläufe [New Lübeck Biographies]. Ed. Alken Bruns for the Association for Lübeck History and Archaeology. Neumünster: Wachholtz, 2009. ill. 25 cm. ISBN 978-3-529-01338-6: EUR 35
This volume is a sequel to a previously published collection of biographical sketches of 19th-century residents of Lübeck: Lübecker Lebensläufe aus neun Jahrhunderten [Lübeck Biographies from Nine Centuries] (Neumünster, 1993, 2009). The biographical entries in the new volume are all taken from the 13-volume Biographisches Lexikon für Schleswig-Holstein und Lübeck (see RREA 11:213). The entries have been only slightly modified, and the secondary literature pertaining to each person has not been updated. Many different occupations are represented. There are some indexes, but an index of persons by occupation would be desirable. [sh/ldl]
Schlesische Lebensbilder [Silesian Biographies]. Published for the Historische Kommission für Schlesien. Insingen: Degener. 24 cm.
Vol. 9. Ed. Joachim Bahlcke. 2007. 467 p. ill. ISBN 978-3-7686-3506-6: EUR 39.80
Vol. 10. Ed. Karl Borchardt. 2010. 297 p. ill. ISBN 978-3-7686-3508-0: EUR 29.80
Schlesische Lebensbilder began in 1922 and is still counted as one of the oldest and most distinguished of the German regional biographies. Volumes 1-4 were reprinted in 1985, and volume 5 (1968) is still in print, as are volumes 6-8 (1990, 2001, and 2004). Volumes 7 (2001 and 8 (2004) were reviewed in RREA 7:335 and 10:258 respectively. Although the ambitious plan of publishing a total of some 5,000 brief biographies has been abandoned, the series continues to this day but still has not reached the IFB reviewer’s 2009 prediction that volume 10 would put the total number of biographies over the 500 mark.
The post-1990 political changes and rapprochement among the countries that ruled Silesia over the years have contributed to the series’ ongoing vitality. Volume 9 has contributions from eight historians from Poland and the Czech Republic. It contains 46 biographies (only two of them women), ranging from Walter, Bishop of Breslau (d.1169) to the author Heinz Piontek (d. 2003). In between these dates are 13 persons from the 12th to the 16th century, 10 from the 16th through the 18th century, and the rest from the 19th and 20th centuries, the most recent being Will-Erich Peuckert (1895-1969).
The entry captions contain only the name and birth and death years of each person. As with the previous eight volumes, one must delve into the article to retrieve the person’s exact dates, places, religious affiliation, and profession. The cumulative indexes do not include the current volume, and the concordance of place names in German, Polish, and Czech was discontinued after volume 8. A cumulative index of professions, chronologically arranged, would be extremely desirable. The reader is referred to other Silesian biographical works that are cumulative and/or arranged by profession, religion, or other criteria, for example: Schlesische Biographie: Personenlexikon (see RREA 12:232); Die schlesische Kirche in Lebensbildern (see RREA 12:253); Historisches Ärztelexikon für Schlesien (see RREA 6:326); and Juden in Oberschlesien (see RREO 95-3-376).
The number of biographies in each volume has varied widely, from about 40 to 60 per volume. Each biography ranges from seven to 10 pages in length. Volume 10 contains only half as many biographies as does volume 9 (23 instead of 46), and although each entry is about 23 pages in length, the total page count is significantly less than that of the preceding volume. As in previous volumes, the biographies are chronologically arranged, with two from the 14th and 15th centuries, three from the 16th-18th centuries, and 15 persons from the 19th and 20th centuries. Those from the 20th century include the architect Hans Poelzig (1869-1936) and the author Jochen Hoffbauer (1923-2006).
At the end of Volume 10 is this reviewer’s complete review of volume 9, a first in 40 years of book reviewing. However, there has still been no change in the format of the entry captions: it would still be desirable to include the exact dates and places of each person’s birth and death, along with religion and profession . This volume contains contributions by two Polish scholars among the 24 contributors listed. The alphabetical index is truly cumulative, containing 486 entries over the 10 volumes published to date—still under half a thousand, however. [sh/ga]
Kleines Lexikon Weimarer Persönlichkeiten [Concise Lexicon of Weimar Personages]. Ed. Ulrich Völkel. Weimar: Weimarer Taschenbuch-Verlag, 2009. 296 p. ill. 21 cm. ISBN 978-3-939964-07-0: EUR 19.90
Covering individuals from 16th through the 20th centuries, this biographical dictionary’s main criterion for inclusion appears to be the person’s connection to Weimar. The 286 short biographies are typically under one page in length, although a few are as long as eight pages. Small portraits appear in the margins, while larger portraits, where available, are included within the text. Evaluations and even cautionary commentary are woven into the terse vitas. Such is the case with the treatment of the literary historian, Adolf Bartels, whose writings are known for their consistent anti-Semitic and national-socialist slant.
The lack of bibliographic references belies the editor’s assertion in the foreword that comprehensive information will be found in this lexicon. The extremely brief “Literature Index” (p.292) is of little help; for this kind of information one would need to consult Weimar: Lexikon zur Stadtgeschichte (see RREA 4:171), also referred to in the foreword. Most of the persons included are easily found in other sources, whereas the majority of those listed in such new works as Frauengestalten Weimar-Jena um 1800 (see RREA 15/16:210) do not appear here. There is an index of eponymous city thoroughfares (p. 266-280) and a name index. The Kleines Lexikon Weimarer Persönlichkeiten is not, as the publisher’s prospectus claims, an “indispensible reference work.” There is little that is unique about this volume. [sh/jmw]
Frauengestalten Weimar-Jena um 1800: ein bio-bibliographisches Lexikon [Women of Weimar and Jena around 1800: A Bio-Bibliographical Lexicon]. Ed. Stefanie Freyer, Katrin Horn, and Nicole Grochowina. Heidelberg: Winter, 2009. 453 p. ill. 24 cm. (Ereignis Weimar-Jena, 22). ISBN 978-3-8253-5471-8: EUR 58
Ereignis Weimar-Jena [The Weimar-Jena Phenomenon] is a special project located at the University of Jena. As stated on its website (http://www2.uni-jena.de/ereignis/ konzept/konzept_eng.html), it “examines the specific constellation of ideas and their effects that is still connected to terms such as Weimarer Klassik [Weimar Classicism], Jenaer Frühromantik [Jena Romanticism], or Deutscher Idealismus [German Idealism].” The publication series of the same name began in 2001; this bio-biographical lexicon stems from a sub-set of the project, Geschlechterbeziehungen und Aufklärung [Gender Relations and Enlightenment]. A complete list of the project’s publications, with abstracts, can be found at http://www2.uni-jena.de/ereignis/publikationen.
Even without having intimate knowledge of the cultural life of this period, many recognizable names will be found in perusing the volume’s index, although most of them are the husbands, brothers, or other male relatives of the 95 female figures included in the work. These women were mainly born around 1750, with some exceptions, such as W. E. E. von Gianni (born in 1719) and a few who were born after 1800. Selected for inclusion in the work were socially active and influential women who lived between 1770 and 1830 and had been resident in or visited the two cities. The editors made an effort to include women who have been little studied to date.
All articles are signed and include name, birth name, years of birth and death, occupation or activities, and the years they lived in Weimar/Jena. Seventy-four of the biographies are accompanied by a small black-and-white portrait. The bibliography lists works by and about each woman, including unpublished materials. An extensive name index (p. 413- 446) includes all individuals mentioned by name within the text, as well as their birth and death dates. Unfortunately, there is no index of occupations or activities. [sh/jmw]
Das Autorenlexikon der Russlanddeutschen [Author Lexicon of Germans from Russia]. Edmund Mater. 4 vols. Lage: Lichtzeichen-Verlag, 2009. 628, 626, 588, 637 p. ill. 23 cm. ISBN 978-3-936850-91-8 (vol. 1): EUR 156 (set)Ed. note: Several histories and bibliographies on the literature of Germans from Russia have been reviewed in RREA in the past decade, for example:
- Lexikon der rußlanddeutschen Literatur (see RREA 10:85)
- Bibliographie zur Geschichte und Kultur der Russlanddeutschen [Bibliography of the History and Culture of Russian-Germans]. Vol. 2: 1917-1998. (see RREA 7:345)
- Bibliographie zur Geschichte und Kultur der Bessarabiendeutschen 1918-1940 (see RREA 8:275)
- Rußlanddeutsche Schriftsteller: von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart; Biographien und Werkübersichten (see RREA 6:118)
Although the market certainly has a niche for a new biographical dictionary of German writers of Russian origin, the present volume does not fill it. The promise of the title is ruined by the wholly amateurish execution. The author knows very little about how to put together a bibliography, so that the final product lacks a clear reason and purpose. A critical analysis of sources—as expected in a modern bio-bibliographical work—is missing altogether. The author has a penchant for citing unabbreviated sources anew in each author entry (sometimes even the street address of the publisher is included!), which results in a spectacular waste of space.
The haphazard manner in which sources are cited does not help. Some entries lack the cited source that would be expected to be there, and in some cases none are listed at all. Although it is natural to expect to find some biographical information in a lexicon of authors, about half of the articles lack it. When any biographical details are provided, they range from bare-bones to very extensive. Their language alternates between German and Russian (and, in some cases, both are represented). The criteria for the selection of names to be included in the dictionary are unclear. In short, this book, which lacks order and method, will be of use to very few scholars. [sh/as]
Politische Eliten in Salzburg: ein biografisches [sic] Handbuch 1918 bis zur Gegenwart [Political Elites in Salzburg: A Biographical Handbook, 1918 to the Present]. Richard Voithofer. Wien: Böhlau, 2007. 374, xxiv p. 25 cm. ISBN 978-3-205-77680-2: EUR 39
Despite the fact that several encyclopedias about Austrian parliamentarians since 1918 exist, for example, the Biographisches Handbuch der österreichischen Parlamentarier 1918- 1998 (see RREA 6:256), works about Austrian politicians are rather rare. Only one encyclopedia for Lower Austria, the Biographisches Handbuch des NÖ Landtages und der NÖ Landesregierung 1921-1995 [Biographical Handbook of the Lower Austrian Parliament and Government] (Wien, 1995—see IFB 99-B09-688) has been published.
This makes Politische Eliten in Salzburg an important publication. It contains brief biographies of 468 Austrian parliamentarians, including members of the provisional state assembly of 1918 and the provisional state government of 1945. The heading for each article provides the person’s name, profession, place of residence, date and place of birth and death, and party affiliation. This is followed by three columns for mandates, party, and date. Literature and sources are found for only a small number of biographees. The extensive appendix lets the user search for parliamentarians by local governments and terms, and offers lists of election results for local, national, and European elections (1919-2004). Instead of pictures of the individual politicians, there are 27 group photos. [sh/mr]
Dictionnaire d’histoire culturelle de la France contemporaine [Dictionary of Contemporary French Cultural History]. Ed. Christian Delporte, Jean-Yves Mollier, and Jean-François Sirinelli. Paris: Presses universitaires de France, 2010. xvi, 900 p. 20 cm. (Dictionnaire). ISBN 9782130561088: EUR 39An RREA Original Review by Michelle Emanuel (University of Mississippi)
Defining “contemporary” France as the 19th through 21st centuries, Dictionnaire d’histoire culturelle de la France contemporaine features a hybrid collection of manageable articles about French cultural history, using anthropological and historiographical research methods to study popular culture. Entries include bibliographical references and suggested keywords from each article referring to additional entries. Viewing history as a laboratory instead of a museum, the volume examines generic categories— including occupations (e.g., actor and musician), types of places (e.g., factory, beach, and museum), and concepts (such as gastronomy and racism)—rather than proper names, specific locales, or items. For example, the article on tobacco gives a timeline of cigarette manufacturing in France in the 20th century, statistics on cigarette consumption by year, references to the representation of smoking in popular culture, and a chronology of anti-smoking campaigns dating back to the 19th century. Extra features include an extensive index of names and a preliminary table of entries, much like a table of contents. This historical dictionary should appeal to a specialized user in an academic library.
Dizionario storico dell’Inquisizione [Historical Dictionary of the Inquisition]. Ed. Adriano Prosperi, Vincenzo Lavenia, and John Tedeschi. 5 vols. Pisa: Edizione del Normale, 2010. 28 cm. ISBN 978-88-7642-323-9: EUR 260An RREA Original Review by Thomas M. Izbicki (Rutgers University)
Proceedings against heretics and other dissidents were not new in the early 13th century, but a more formalized process of inquisitorial inquiry and judgment was introduced into the canon law by the papacy during that period. Individual tribunals were created, usually involving members of the mendicant orders working with (or in conflict with) local authorities. Eventually, centralized inquisitorial jurisdictions were created in Rome, Portugal, and Spain. Such proceedings were not truly universal, even in countries in which Roman Catholicism remained dominant, and individual tribunals were suppressed at varying times in more recent history. The Roman Inquisition, or Suprema Congregatio Sanctae Romanae et Universalis Inquisitionis [Supreme Congregation of the Sacred Roman and Universal Inquisition], was renamed the Suprema Sancta Congregatio Sancti Officii [Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office] in 1905 and then the Congregatio Sancta pro Doctrina Fidei [Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith] in 1965. (The word Sancta was dropped from its name in 1988.) The archives of the Congregation have been opened selectively to scholars only in recent times. The records of inquisitorial proceedings are useful not just for religious history but also to document entire societies.
The first three volumes of the five-volume Dizionario storico dell’Inquisizione contain articles, arranged alphabetically, by scholars in Europe and North America. The dictionary covers persons (including some modern scholars, e.g., Lord Acton), groups (including religious orders), ideas (e.g., Gnosticism), offenses (e.g., Apostasy) and important documents, among them important papal letters. Events such as the abolition of tribunals in Italy, Spain, and Portugal are also covered. Each volume has a list of entries with the names of their authors. Individual articles can be as short as a few paragraphs or may run to multiple pages. Each of these entries, signed by its author, provides at its end “see also” references and brief bibliographic notes. These references contain only the work’s author and publication date, since the full entries are found in the fourth volume, an extensive bibliography of works in several languages. The bibliography does not distinguish between primary and secondary sources but rather simply lists publications alphabetically under the names of the authors. The fourth volume, Apparati, contains a bibliography and a very detailed index of names.
The dictionary is rounded out with a supplementary volume, Inserto iconografico, of plates, many in color, showing works of art, places of interest (e.g., a cell in the prison of the Holy Office in Narni), pictures of public events (e.g., the burning of heretics), and title pages of books. These illustrations show both Catholic art, including paintings of Saint Dominic and Saint Peter Martyr (a murdered inquisitor), and graffiti left by prisoners. Goya’s Il tribunale dell’Inquisizione serves as an example of art hostile to the Inquisition. The graffiti written by prisoners are the most interesting of these plates because they are less likely to be found easily in other publications.
This reference tool is truly impressive. Few topics have been missed. John Paul II gets an entry, among other things, for opening the archives of the Holy Office to scholars and apologizing for the treatment of Galileo. Solicitation of sex by confessors is covered, under “Sollecitazione in confessionale,” as are the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception and the canon Ad nostrum of the Council of Vienne (1311-1312), which condemned errors attributed to Beguines and Beghards (lay communities of women and men, respectively, living an informal religious life). A rare omission is the story The Pit and the Pendulum by Edgar Allen Poe, which is set against the background of Napoleon I’s abolition of the Spanish Inquisition. Other reference tools may cover aspects of this topic, but none provides the sheer volume of useful information on inquisitorial proceedings and related topics contained in Dizionario storico dell’Inquisizione.
A expulsão dos Jesuítas dos domínios portugueses: 250. aniversário [The Expulsion of the Jesuits from the Portuguese Dominions: 250th Anniversary]. Lisbon: Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal, 2009. 197 p. 24 cm. ISBN 9789725654528: EUR 14.13An RREA Original Review by Anthony J. Oddo (Yale University)
This work is an extensive compilation of the holdings of the Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal [National Library of Portugal] commemorating the 250th anniversary of the expulsion of the Jesuits from Portuguese territories, an anniversary that took place in September 2009. The volume is divided into two main sections. Part 1, by Jorge Couto, an authority on Portuguese history, is a concise yet very readable historical background to the period. Part 2, the “catálogo,” is subdivided into classes, namely, manuscripts, works published before 1800, legislation, works published after 1801, and iconography. Entries in the sections for manuscripts, legislation, and works published before 1801 are annotated in detail. The materials published after 1801 are not annotated, only listed alphabetically. The primary language of the catalog is Portuguese, although there are occasional references to works in other languages such as French, Spanish, and Italian. The book has an index of anonymous works as well as a provenance index listing former owners of these materials.
A expulsão dos Jesuítas dos domínios portugueses is a worthwhile addition to a reference collection of an academic institution, especially one with programs to support the study of European, Latin American, and religious history. Although the catalog entries are limited to the holdings of the Biblioteca Nacional de Portugal, the overall work is comprehensive and detailed. It is designed for a Portuguese-speaking user.
Studienhandbuch östliches Europa [Handbuch for the Study of Eastern Europe]. Ed. Harald Roth (vol. 1),Thomas M. Bohn, and Dietmar Neutatz (vol. 2). 2d rev. and updated ed. 2 vols. Köln: Böhlau, 2009. xi, 534, xv, 549 p. 21 cm. (UTB, 3167, 3168: Geschichte). ISBN 978-3-8252-3173-6 (Set): EUR 44.90
This second, revised and updated edition of the Studienhandbuch is one of a number of reference works that have recently appeared to support the field of Eastern European studies. Volume 1 is dedicated to Central and Southeastern Europe, while the subject of Volume 2 is predominantly Russia, as well as Ukraine and Belarus. Volume 1 begins by defining general concepts, such as borders and regional boundaries, historiography, political culture, etc. It then presents the three regions of East-Central, Northeastern, and Southeastern Europe. The core of the book is devoted to 40 articles on “countries, states, and regions” presented in alphabetical order. Although brief by necessity, the articles manage to fit a large amount of information in the space of a few pages. For readers wishing to learn more about the subject, each article provides a selected bibliography. Next comes a section on dominant ethnic groups and religions, followed by an Appendix containing an index of names and places, a short glossary, and important URLs. Volume 2 follows a similar pattern, with necessary changes to accommodate the unique nature of the region. Both volumes are enriched by readable, informative maps.
This title is a welcome addition to the growing body of reference literature on Eastern Europe. It succeeds both in introducing basic information and in presenting the major problems of scholarly research into the region. [ks/as]
Alfavitnyi spisok russkikh zakhoronenii na kladbishche v Sent-Zhenev’ev-de-Bua [An Alphabetical Listing of Russian Graves at the Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois Cemetery]. Ivan Grezin. 2d ed. Moskva: Staraia Basmannaia, 2009. 566 p. 22 cm. (Rossiiskii nekropol’, 9). ISBN 9785904043162: r. 1,093An RREA Original Review by Anna L. Shparberg (Rice University)
At 566 pages, the present volume is the longest by far of all that have appeared in the series Rossiiskii nekropol’ [Russian Necropolis], which is dedicated to documenting historical cemeteries in Russia and abroad. This length reflects the unique place that the Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois Cemetery, located in the southern suburbs of Paris, holds in the history of Russian emigration to the West. France was the primary destination for a large number of émigrés who left Russia after the Bolshevist coup of 1917. The cemetery at Sainte-Geneviève-des-Bois is the final resting place of over 10,000 members of three waves of Russian emigration.
Russian burials at the cemetery began in 1929 and have continued, albeit at a greatly diminished pace, to this day. Such significant figures of Russian emigration abroad as the writer Ivan Bunin, theologian Sergei Bulgakov, choreographer Serge Lifar/Sergei Lifar’, dancer Rudolf Nureyev, film director Andrei Tarkovsky/Andrei Tarkovskii, French Resistance heroine Princess Vera Obolensky/Vera Obolenskaia, and poets Dmitry Merezhkovsky/Dmitrii Merezhkovskii, Zinaida Gippius, and Aleksandr Galich, are all interred there.
The present book attempts to document every grave in the cemetery that has a connection with the Russian émigré community. This undertaking has particular urgency in view of constant challenges to the continued preservation of these graves. In spite of its immense historical and cultural significance, the cemetery at Sainte-Geneviève-des- Bois has never been granted protected status as a historical landmark, which leaves many graves exposed to destruction and reuse. Further damage to the cemetery and tombstones has been caused by the elements, most recently by the extra-tropical cyclone Lothar in 1999, and continues to occur.
The collection of data for the book, involving direct examination of tombstone inscriptions, was carried out in 1994. Information thus gathered was later supplemented by perusing obituaries and other sources, such as archival materials and reference publications on Russian emigration abroad.
The second, greatly expanded and revised edition begins with a brief introduction and a three-page bibliography. The body of the guide contains 10,461 entries, which comprise 10,369 personal graves, 13 family burial sites, and 79 cenotaphs. The author has chosen to present the information alphabetically, which helps to highlight family groups, over following the numeration of the graves. Most entries consist of only the inscription on the tombstone. Whenever possible, extremely abbreviated biographical data gleaned from the cited sources have been added. Entries are provided with crossreferences in cases where persons were known under more than one name (maiden names, noms-de-plume, and alternative spellings).
The book is recommended for academic libraries with collections in Russian and French history.
Bilder-Wechsel: sächsisch-russischer Kulturtransfer im Zeitalter der Aufklärung [Perspective Exchanges: Saxon-Russian Cultural Transfers in the Age of Enlightenment]. Ed. Volkmar Billig for the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden. Transl. from the Russian Regine Dehnel. Köln [et al.]: Böhlau, 2009. 304 p. ill. 24 cm. ISBN 978-3-412-20435-8: EUR 34.90
In the 18th century, during and following Peter the Great’s reign (1689-1725), Russia emerged from its centuries-long isolation. This emergence included a veritable explosion in cultural contacts between the country and the Western world. The present volume contains 10 informative papers by German and Russian scholars which explore various facets of the Saxon contributions to this cultural exchange. Section one, “Treasures of Knowledge,” discusses collecting art practices at the court of Peter the Great, Saxon influences on the founding of the Kunstkamera in St.Petersburg, and how study with Johann Friedrich Henckel provided inspiration for the creation of Mikhail Lomonosov’s chemical laboratory.
The papers in the second section look at the art collection belonging to Count von Brühl, an influential cabinet minister in Saxony for much of the 18th century and prime minister between 1748 and 1763, and its acquisition by the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg at the time of Catherine the Great. The cultural transfer of this collection containing over 30,000 engravings and 600 paintings represented a significant milestone in the museum’s history. The last section considers exchanges of knowledge between the two countries and the influences on their perceptions of each other due to the activities of such figures as Count Aleksandr Beloselski, the Russian envoy to Dresden and a patron of the arts, and German scholar Jacob von Stählin, who served for many years at the Russian royal court. The book highlights the role played by Dresden in these early cultural exchanges. [ks/as]
Käser, Künstler, Kommunisten: vierzig russisch-schweizerische Lebensgeschichten aus vier Jahrhunderten [Cheesemakers, Artists, Communists: Forty Russian-Swiss Life Stories from Four Centuries]. Ed. Eva Maeder and Peter Niederhäuser. Zürich: Chronos-Verlag, 2009. 253 p. ill. 23 cm. ISBN 978-3-03-400950-8: SFr. 38, EUR 24
The Swiss Association of the Teachers of Russian (OPRJaSch) marks its 40th birthday with the publication of the present volume, which appropriately contains 40 biographical essays on Swiss-Russian interactions over the last four centuries. It is estimated that during these four centuries, up to 50,000 Swiss traveled or emigrated to Russia.
The book is divided into six sections, the first four shedding light on (1) Swiss emigration to Russia in the 18th century, (2) emigration from 1800 to 1914, (3) emigration and repatriation between 1900 and 1950, and (4) emigration after 1991. The remaining two sections treat the movement of people in the other direction: (1) Russian immigrants to Switzerland and (2) years of exchanges, education policy, and the OPRJaSch. The work concludes with a bibliography of literature about the subjects, as well as information about the authors of those biographical portraits. The copiously illustrated essays introduce the reader to a diverse group of individuals seeking their fortunes in a foreign land, whether they were Swiss craftsmen, merchants, and governesses, or Russian students and political exiles. The recent revival of ancient ties between the two countries makes the appearance of this engrossing tome a timely and welcome event. [ks/as]
Bulgarien-Literatur vor und nach dem EU-Beitritt Bulgariens 2007 [Bulgaria Publications before and after Bulgaria’s Entry into the European Union]. Ed. Helmut W. Schaller. München: Sagner, 2010. 59 p. 21 cm. ISBN 978-3-86688- 101-3: EUR 7.80
This slim catalog was published in conjunction with the March 2010 exhibit of Bulgarian literature at the Berlin State Library that was organized by the Deutsch-Bulgarische Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Beziehungen zwischen Deutschland und Bulgarien [German- Bulgarian Society for Promoting Relations between Germany and Bulgaria] and the Eastern Europe Division of the Prussian Cultural Heritage Library in Berlin. The exhibit focused on publishing in Bulgaria immediately before and after the country’s entry into the European Union in 2007. Helmut Schaller’s in-depth introduction examines the country’s past history and present state without shying away from a discussion of the numerous challenges to its European integration.
The contents of the catalog are grouped under five headings: (1) General publications on Bulgaria and Europe, (2) History, (3) Present-day problems of politics, law and economy in Bulgaria, (4) Bulgarian language and literature, and (5) The Bulgarian Orthodox Church, art history and history of science. Almost all the publications appeared after 2000, with the overwhelming majority of them dating from 2008 and 2009. The titles include not just those published in the country, but also books on these topics from outside Bulgaria. The catalog provides a good overview of the state of the Bulgarian publishing industry during the last decade. [ks/as]
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