Recent Research on Cold War Studies - University of Sheffield
Recent Research on Cold War Studies Dr Eirini Karamouzi Teaching History at post-16 and beyond Conference Tuesday, 16 June 2015 Cold War Studies 1) Why Study the Cold War? 2) Old and New Historiography 3) Five paradigms: Ideology; Politics and Economics; Technology and Arms Race; Culture
and Propaganda; Human Rights; 4) Primary Sources 5) Questions Why Study the Cold War? 25 years after the end of the Cold war, we stand a precise moment when scholarship and sources are coming together What impact did the Cold War have? Did the Cold War define the post war period? What was the Cold War? Is there a definitive history of the Cold War? Historisation of the Cold War
25th anniversary and talk about a new Cold War (Edward Lucas) has galvanized the literature: more emphasis on the World that the Cold War made GOAL is to offer out students factual grounding and conceptual apparatus necessary to understand the contemporary world The Old Historiography Orthodox: Those who blamed Soviet aggression (Arthur Schlesinger) Revisionist: Those who blamed US expansionism (William Appleman Williams)
Post-Revisionist (or Realist): Those who focus on concepts of national interest ; no assignment of blame (John Lewis Gaddis I) Neo-Orthodox: Those who return to Stalins culpability (Gaddis II, of We Now Know) The New Historiography: Multiarchival, multipolar (analytical frameworks), multilevel (crossroads of national, transnational and global perspectives) Material factors vs. ideal concepts
Young Gaddis vs. Westad Authoritarian rule vs. US global power Late Gaddis vs. Anders Stephanson Europe vs. the Third World Major Publications Cambridge History of the Cold War :3 volumes The Routledge History of the Cold War Two journals dedicated on the Cold War: Cold War History, LSE: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/fcwh20/current
Journal of Cold War Studies, Harvard: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/loi/jcws What is new about Cold War history in the last decade? the pervasiveness of the Cold War has often been used as an argument for studying it on its own terms; the bipolar system and its dynamics dominated all the nooks and crannies of the societies involves. But its very pervasiveness means that it was also permeable and subject to a myriad of influences and transformative trends.
The only dangerous form of observation is the idea that the part being observed is the only constituent part of the whole Odd Arne Westad (LSE): proponent of intellectual and methodological pluralism New Cold War History BUT with such a pluralistic approach: how do we untangle the Cold from all the other strands of 20th century history; what was distinctive about this period? Otherwise we may dilute its
importance and obscure the centrality of many other factors both in the domestic and international realms ;decentring the field from diplomatic and military realm Cold War risks of losing its War character One or many Cold War Histories? Cold War affected different groups in a multiplicity of ways, based on location and temporality; New Cold War History Also do we need to take off the Cold War lenses especially in the case of the Third World or even postwar Europe?
Major theme the importance of a Global Cold War: major advanced on Latin America studies, Africa, Southeast Asia A focus on Europe: Walter LaFeber observed in his classic America, Russia and the Cold War He controls all of Europe is well on his way towards controlling the whole world. HOWEVER instead of an object of superpower politics, more importance attached to European actors in transforming the international arena Federico Romero Cold War
Historiography at the Crossroads, Cold War History, 14:4 (2014), 685702 How is the Cold War understood in an expanding and diversifying historiographical field? Conceptual precision and specificity seem to be giving way to a looser understanding of the Cold War as an era that encompassed different although interconnected conflicts and transformations. Some scholars ask for specificity and consistency while current centrifugal trends point to multiple approaches and centres of interest. Diversity is galvanising the field, but historians need to (re)define their object of inquiry and strive for at
least a minimum of conceptual clarity. In particular, we should aim at a broad cultural understanding of the Cold War, contextualise it in larger processes of historical change without confusing the two dimensions, and reassess relations between Europe and other Cold War contexts. A. Ideology as a Modernization Project Engerman: Russias 1917 October revolutions triggered confrontation between USA and SU: Became global in the 40s
A battle of ideas: American liberalism vs Soviet Communism Both ideologies progressive, universalistic and deterministic/messianistic; both presented as projects on modernity seeking to supplant moribund European traditions B. Politics and Economics ECSC, 1950 Treaty of Rome (EEC), 1957
NATO, 1949 Politics and Economics Cold War and European Integration: interaction evolution of the Cold War and the gradual development of todays European Union (EU) was so intimate as to make it vital for historians to break down the barriers between the two fields. Early EEC; Maastricht/German Unification; enlargements For example, geopolitical Cold War reasons
explain Greek entry to the EEC: C. Technology and Arms Race Technology and Arms Race Nuclear weapons essential about the cold war, distinguishes it fundamentally from other conflicts. A Cold War without nuclear weapons seems unthinkable
BUT Fear of nuclear annihilation made the Cold War over the long pull: defeat capitalism or communism by means of peaceful competition: culture- technological innovation, consumer satisfaction Technology and Arms Race Westad: Technology was the epitome of the two modernist USA and Soviet
ideologies and the systems they represented: attempts at simplifying and conquering a complex world How did technology contribute to the many weapons with which the Cold War was fought? Crucial areas of technology that were opened up though defence related funding include navigation systems, space exploration, and even genetics MOST IMPORTANT: Funding in electronics and communications- the most important areas of technology that contributed to global changes and the way the conflict ended Reynolds: the technologies that have shaped the late 20th c, though derived from CW science, are emphatically the products of capitalism , not communism
( computer, transistors) C. Cultural and Propaganda C. Cultural and Propaganda Despite two superpower domination: the implementation of cultural policies neither monolithic nor uniformly successful. local factor important; a process of cultural adaptation and rejection on both sides of the Iron Curtain Cold War privileged Cultural relations in an unprecedented degree:
The repressive side of cold war culture, although significant, should not obscure how the Cold War also helped secure progressive and inclusive reforms. Importance of popular culture; but bear in mind the cultural version of Cold War triumphalism in historiography: Americanization: Mainly used for the period after 1945-USA by virtue of technological-military-industrial prowess and Cold War dynamics abandon isolationism, engage in western Europe reconstruction D. Human Rights Akira Iriye: The Human Rights Revolution (Oxford, 2012)
Since 1945, the human rights have been defined and redefined according to political needs, moral imperatives, and local contexts. Role of Human Rights in ending the Cold war: Snyder and Thomas show how the Helsinki process facilitated the rise of organized dissent in Eastern Europe and pressures for human rights reforms in the Soviet Union; NOT containment won the Cold War BUT efforts of activists, lawyers, minority-right advocates across the borders that set the stage for the political earthquakes that followed.
Primary Resources Hanhimanki/Westad: The Cold War: A History in Documents and Eyewitness Accounts ( Oxford University Press, 2013) Judge, Edward & Langdon, John (eds.), The Cold War: A Global History with Documents, Pearson, 2010 Jane Degras, Soviet Documents on Foreign Policy, Oxford University press, Royal Institute of International Affairs, 1953 Primary Sources
a) The National Archives: Cabinet Papers, 1915-1986 http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/cabinetpapers/ b) Foreign Relations of the United States ( NOW all digitalised) The Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) series presents the official documentary historical record of major U.S. foreign policy decisions and significant diplomatic activity https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments c) The US Presidential Libraries hold a wealth of documents
Primary Sources d) Wilson Center, Digital Archive The Digital Archive contains once-secret documents from governments ( and especially the Soviet Union) all across the globe, uncovering new sources and providing fresh insights into the history of international relations and diplomacy. It collects the research of two Wilson Center projects which focus on the interrelated histories of the Cold War, and Nuclear Proliferation. The third link points to publications based on these declassified documents http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/theme/cold-war-histo
ry http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/theme/nuclear-histor y http://www.wilsoncenter.org/program-publications/Cold%2 0War%20International%20History%20Project Primary Sources CVCE: The research infrastructure on European Integration http://www.cvce.eu/en/hom Kings College London: Oral History Witness
Seminars: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/sspp/departments/icbh/witness/ OnlineArchive.aspx British Cartoon Archives holds collections by over three hundred cartoonists http://www.cartoons.ac.uk/collections-bca Reviews If you are interested in reviews of major works on Cold War or roundtables, the h-diplo is the best sources which is part of the h- net: H-Net Reviews
in the Humanities and Social Sciences an online scholarly review resource. https://networks.h-net.org/h-diplo Questions? Thank you
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