Byelorussian State University

Department of History
To whom it may concern:
Dear Colleagues,
I am pleased to introduce our research project "Comparative analyses of the post-war modernization: Belarus and Germany (1945--1955)". I also should like to invite for collaboration all persons interested in this topic.
Sincerely yours,
Dr. Vyacheslav Menkovsky
1. IDENTITY OF THE GROUP LEADER
Surname: Menkovsky First Name: Vyacheslav
Date and Place of Birth: October 13, 1959; Leipzig (Germany)
Citizenship: Belarus Country: Belarus
Home Address: 92-32 Pritytskiy Str. Minsk, Belarus, 220140
Work Address: Belarussian State University Department of History 6, Krasnoarmeyskaya Str. Minsk, Belarus Home Tel: 375-172-153-722
Work Tel: 375-172-277-100 Fax: 375-172-260-175
E-mail address; SPAK@HISTD.BSU.MINSK.BY
2. COUNTRIES INVOLVED: Belarus
3. TILE OF THE PROJECT Comparative analysis of the post-war modernisation Belarus and Germany (1945-1955).
4. ACADEMIC DISCIPLINE History
5. EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND OF GROUP LEADER Universities attended: Belarussian State University, Department of History
Degrees: Ph.D. (History) - Postgraduate courses: Belarussian State University, Department of History
6. PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE OF GROUP LEADER
Present Employer/Institution: Belarussian State University
Job/Title/Function: Associate Professor, Deputy Dean Address of Employer: Belarussian State University Department of History 6, Krasnoarmeyskaya Str. Minsk, Belarus
7. GROUP LEADER"S RESEARCH EXPERIENCE IN THE AREA OF THE PROJECT
1. Belarus and Russia: comparative analysis of the postsoviet development - the leader of the group.
2. Computerisation of the historical education - member of the group.
8. MAIN OBJECTIVES TO BE ACHIEVED
Post - war modernisation in Belarus
9. METHODOLOGY TO BE USED
Traditional methodology of text analysis. Traditional methodology of comparative studies.
10. OUTCOME
Articles and Book
List of Collaborators
1. Pavel Tereshkovich
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of birth: July 25, 1958
Institutional address: Department of History, Belarusian State University,
Academic background:
1980 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent, historian,
1987 -- Academy of Science of Belarus, Ph.D. (kandidat nauk), ethno-history
Present position: Associate professor
Language knowledge: Russian and Belarusian -- as native languages
English (reading, speaking and writing) -- fluent
German -- fair.
2. Oleg Janovsky
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of birth: April 6, 1951 I
nstitutional Address: Department of History, Belarusian State University,
Academic background:
1973 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent, historian,
1983 -- Belarusian State University, Ph.D. (kandidat nauk), history
Present position: Associate professor
Language knowledge: Belarusian and Russian -- as native languages
Polish (reading, speaking and writing) fluent
English (reading, speaking and writing) -- fair
German (reading, speaking and writing) -- fair.
3. Alexander Kohanovsky
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of birth: July 24, 1963
Institutional address: Department of History, Belarusian State University,
Academic background:
1985 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent, historian,
1989 -- Belarusian State University, Ph.D. (kandidat nauk), history
Present position: Associate professor
Language knowledge: Belarusian and Russian -- as native languages
English (reading, speaking and writing) -- good
German -- fair.
4. Alexey Litvin
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of birth: January 12, 1951
Institutional address: Institute of History, Academy of Science of Belarus,
Academic background:
1973 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent, historian,
1986 -- Belarusian State University, Ph.D. (kandidat nauk), history
Present position: Head of Department
Language knowledge: Russian and Belarusian -- as native languages
Spanish (reading, speaking and writing) -- fluent
Polish (reading, speaking and writing) -- fluent
5. Aleksandr Mikhalchenko
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of birth: August 19, 1947
Institutional address: The Committee on Archives and Clerical Work of the Republic of Belarus
Academic background:
1974 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent, Journalist,
1987 -- Belarusian State University, Ph.D. (kandidat nauk), history
Present position: Chairman of the Committee on Archives and Clerical Work
Language knowledge: Russian and Belarusian -- as native languages
English (reading, speaking and writing) -- good
Polish (reading, speaking and writing) fluent
6. Pyotr Shuplyak
Citizenship: The Republic of Belarus
Date of Birth: August 8, 1942
Institutional address: Department of History, Belarusian State University,
Academic background:
1970 -- Belarusian State University, Master degree equivalent
1976 -- Friedrich Shiller University of Jena (Eastern Germany), Ph. D., history
Present position: professor
Language knowledge: Belarusian and Russian -- as native languages
German (reading, speaking and writing) -- fluent
Justification of group composition
Members of group have known each other for long time. They have experience to work as team.
Each member of the group has its own part of work:
Project proposal
Academic subject: History (Archival-based research into socio-political processes in Central and Eastern Europe).
Title: Comparative analysis of the post-war modernization: Belarus and Germany (1945--1955)
Basic Idea.
The main idea of the proposal is to include the study of Belarusian history in to the context of the World, and, first of all, European History. It is not a secret that Humanities in general and History in particular were, probably, the most isolated parts from the world trends parts of the so called Soviet scientific school. Comparative studies, for our mind, is good idea and good tool to broke the remains of the "Berlin wall" in the professional and public opinion.
Main objective: Post-war modernization in Belarus.
Why exactly post-war modernization in Belarus was chosen as main objective of the Project?
This period is of extraordinary significance for the modern history of Belarus and for understanding of the mane tendencies of the present-day development of our Republic . World War II caused catastrophic losses on Belarus. From 25% to 30% of population were died. The majority of cities and villages were ruined. Industrial income constituted not more than 10% of pre-war level.
The first after war decade started extremely rapid process of the transformation the hole structure of society mainly due to industrialization and urbanization. Just before the World War II Belarusian SSR was one of the less industrialized republic in the European part of the USSR. The industrial product per capita was in 2,4 times less than in the hole Soviet Union. It was exactly in the post-war period when the majority of industrial enterprises which constitute now the basis of Belarusian industry were established. The post-war industrialization was oriented first of all for the needs of the military complex of the Soviet Union. It changed social structure of Belarusian society. Intensive growth of the urban population mainly due external migration seriously influenced on the development of socio-political trends and lingvo-cultural situation in the Republic . Those processes created solid base for the dramatic changes in the national sphere which called "de-belurasiazation". They shaped the peculiarities socio-economic image of Belarus and in some extant could explain specific of the present-day development.
At the same time, instead of high significanse of the post-war period there no serious histirical works on it. There are a lot of publications on this problem, but their authors were deeply engaged in the communist ideology. So, frendly speaking, they reflect not real history but mainly aimed to confirm that "the line of the Communist Party was the only one right and the only one possible".
So we belive that fresh look will be of a grate importance. And it is obviuos that research should be based on the archives. We are going to work first of all in the central and local Belarusian Archives. The opportunity to work in Polish Archives in Warsaw and Bielystock (former Belarusian town) is very important for our project. They content a lot of materials on post-war migration exchange between Poland and Belarus, military problems, political repression.
Why it is exactly German which was chosen to compare with Belarus?
There are a lot of different reasons. Bealrus and Germany * (please note that Germany in our case means only Western part of Germany) are former enemies. They are both victims of the war. They are both used external resources to reconstruct their economies. They were both achieved real successes in the reconstruction. But there were two of high purity different variants of modernization: pure democratic and pure totalitarian.
Please, note that we are not going to study the history of the post-war Germany as seprate scientific object. It is studied enough and we realized quite well that it is hardly possible for us to add something new. History of Germany for us is just background, just system of coordinates. But we also believe that using of German historiography will help us to mange modern historian methdology and improve our professional skills.
The last reason to chose Germany for comparison with Belarus are our good relations with the German coleagues-historians. Member of our team Dr.Shupljak graduated from Fridich Shiller University of Jena. We have the plan of calloboration with this University and the problem of German-Belarusian comparative studies is considered as perspective (see attached document). We are also mainatning good connection with the Free University of Berlin. Dr.Cierashkovich has been calloborated for two last years with the University of Tubingen in elaboration of thr monography dedicated to Belarusian history.
What problems will be studied?
We are going to study the modernization of Belarusian society taken as hole. Threre will be special attention to:
1).Changes in economic development. Industrialization. Basic branches. Problem of resources. Investments. Labor resources. Rates and results of industrial development. Agriculture. Problem of regions development. Industrialization and problem of Center-periphery (Moscow--Minsk) relations.
2).Changes in the social structure of society. Urbanization. Growth of city dwellers and industrial workers. The role of migration.
3).Changes in the political life. The post-war Soviet political ideology. Formation of the new generation of the native political elite.
4).Military problem. Belarus in the military strategy of Moscow. Post-war militarization of Belarus. Its social and cultural effects.
5).Changes in the cultural life. Development of the system of education. State policy in mass media.
6).Changes in the ethnic situation. Ethno-demographic results of the World War II. National policy of Moscow and Belarusian nation. The new wave of Russification. Intellectual resistance. The problems of the national minorities.
7). Hole complex of issues of the post-war development of West Grmany.
Methodology
Traditional methodology of text analysis Traditional methotology of comparative studies.
Results
The results of the research will be published in the several articles and in seprate book. They are willb also used in the courses for the students of the Department of History of Belarusian State University.

Back to the first page of University

Back to the first page of WWW Belarus

(c) 1996 BSU, DH, WWW Belarus

Please visit our sponsors.
Click Here to Visit our Sponsor

Webmasters, need money? Click here!
Click Here to become a ValueClick Member Site