World café

International Conference on the Occasion of the First Centennial of the Beginning of the First World War



Institute for History, Sarajevo; Croatian Institute of History, Zagreb; Institute of National History, Skopje; Institute for East and Southeast European Sutides, Regensburg

Place and time of the Conference: Sarajevo, 19th and 20th June 2014

The aim of the Conference is to consider the causes, course, and the political, social and economic consequences of the First World War on the basis of new historical research in the context of European and more specifically Balkan history. The conference will also explore the legacy of World War One and its place in collective memory today. The conference wants to highlight the significance of the First World War for Eastern and Southeastern European societies but at the same time will consider the larger European and international picture.

The intention of the organizers is to make the conference in Sarajevo a vibrant forum of academic exchange of new approaches to the history of the First World War in the context of the centennial of its beginning. One aim of the conference is to re-consider the political aspects of World War One, such as the relations between the Great powers on the eve of the First World War, the politics of smaller countries and their room of manoeuvre, the formation of the system of alliances and their geo-political as well as ideological foundations, the clash between imperial orders and nationalism, etc. At the same time the conference will focus on the experiences and perceptions of “ordinary people”, both at the frontline but also “at home”, and the mental consequences of the war on its survivors. The conference will discuss the immediate as well as long-term impact of the Great War on the development of European societies. We also intend to reflect on the way, how the First World War is treated by the various national historiographies in the Balkans and by other historiographies, and how it is taught in the classroom. The conference intends to discuss the place of the war in local, national and transnational cultures of memory and the ways the war has been presented in different media and literary and artist genres.

Main themes of the conference:

1. The First World War in Historiography between Politics and Science
2. Europe on the Eve of the First World War
a. Colonialism
b. Alliances and rivalries
c. Nationalism vs. Empire
3. Sarajevo 1914
a. The Assassination: myths and controversies
b. Local dynamics and global consequences
4. The War
a. The military-political context
b. Life and death on the frontline
c. Ordinary people in the background of the frontline
5. European Societies in the First World War
a. War and social change
b. Mobilization and population policies
c. Public opinion and resistance
6. The Consequences of the First World War 
a. The foundations of the post-war world
b. Political and economical consequences – roots of future instability
c. War crimes, atrocities, and the humanitarian question
d. Trauma and psychological consequences
e. Remembering the war
7. A Hundred Years Later
a. The First World War in education
b. The First World War in literature and art
c. The war on collective memory today

We invite you to send your applications for participation in the Conference until January 31, 2013 with an abstract (not longer than 500 words) and a short CV (english, 100 words). You can send your applications on the following address:

Ivan Dukić
Profesor povijesti i geografije. Živi i radi u Zagrebu. Autor je nekoliko udžbenika i metodičkih priručnika. Aktivan u Hrvatskoj udruzi nastavnika povijesti.