Introduction Historical and cultural background Part II. Lecturer: Tõnis Saarts Institute of Political Science and Public Administration Spring PDF

Introduction Historical and cultural background Part II Lecturer: Tõnis Saarts Institute of Political Science and Public Administration Spring 2009 Baltic region in the 17 th century Despite Swedish and

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Introduction Historical and cultural background Part II Lecturer: Tõnis Saarts Institute of Political Science and Public Administration Spring 2009 Baltic region in the 17 th century Despite Swedish and Polish rule, Baltic German nobility retained their privileges. In the 15th century serfdom was introduced, in the 17-18th century serfdom became even harsher (Elbe-line). Positive influence of Swedish rule education village schools literacy, Tartu University Oldest university in the region Vilnius University 1579 After the 16th century main trade routes moved to Atlantic turning point for the CEE. The region began to lag behind from Western Europe. 16th century heydays of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. 17th century decline. Declining of Tallinn and Riga as trade centres Swedish domain Russian conquest Russian interest: Baltics as a window to Europe trade and communication with Western Europe Great Nordic War between Russia and Sweden. Peter The Great conquered all Swedish possessions (Estonia, Northern Latvia to Daugava +Riga; Latgale+Courland remained to Polish hands). Nordic War as a big economic and social catastrophe plague, economic decline intensified even more. Special Baltic Order : Baltic German nobility retained its political power. Russian Empire was not allowed to settle here immigrants Should accepted protestantism and German cultural domination 3 partitions of Poland (1772, 1792, 1795) - with third partition Russia got Courland+Lithuania. Russian Conquest 1721 Partition of Poland The region with a common destiny! Only since the end of the 18 th century we can speak about the Baltic region as a region what has a common destiny. Before there was little common in the history of Lithuania and Estonia/Latvia! Before the 18th century quite few contacts with Russian culture and Ortodox civilization. Region was already integrated to the West! Part of Russian Empire 19 th century 1819 serfdom was abolished in Estonia and Northern Latvia (Estland and Livland). In Lithuania (also in Latgale) in 1861 (like in rest of Russian Empire) Literacy in Estonia/Latvia 92%, Lithuania ~ 30% Latvia/Estonia quicker development than Lithuania 1860 s 1870 s national awakening defining Estonian, Lithuanian, Latvian nations (started later in Lithuania). Press and literature now in local languages. Before German (Latvia, Estonia) or Polish (Lithuania) were dominating languages. National movement - strong German origins cultural ethnicity (culture, language, genetical aspects) The end of 19 th century Lithuania relations with Tsarist government more tense. Several uprisings with Poles in the 19th century. Russification attempts in the 1880 s: usage of local languages at schools was banned, Lithuanian language in Latin script was outlawed, etc. The end of Special Baltic Order. Russification attempts failed too late! They even strengthened national consciousness. Industrialization in the end of 19th century: Especially in Latvia and Estonia. Riga became the biggest industrial center of Empire alongside St. Peterburg/Moscow. Lithuania lagged behind. In the second half of the century peasants life standard was improving especially in Estonia and Latvia (St. Petersburg s, Riga s markets). Beginning of the 20 th century Latvia and Estonia the wealthiest provinces in the Empire (though pace of industrialization and living standard lagged behind from Western Europe at least half a century). The dawn of the 20 th century - quite wealthy, conscious, literate, quite educated Estonian and Latvian peasants. The second half of the 19th century was also the birth time of national urban middle class. Industrialization incited more extensive urbanization. (Lithuania lagged down). Small scale Russian immigration to Riga and Tallinn. All these groups: urban middle-class, workers, wealthy peasants became now politically active. Conclusion: Different or similar? Origin: Lithuanians and Latvians common origin (Baltic nations), Estonians distinct (Fenno-Ugrian) History and Culture. Latvia and Estonia protestant, German-Scandinavian culture room, have a common history since 13th century (Latgale and Courland as exceptions). Lithuania distinct catholic, belongs to the Polish-Central European culture room, common history with the other Baltic nations only since the end of 18 th century. Lithuanians also stress their medieval glory - national pride and stronger nationalism. Latvians and Estonians have nothing comparable to be very proud of. Baltic nations have never been an integral part of Russian-Ortodox civilization. Crucial event for making difference German conquest (13th century): Set border between Latvia and Lithuania. Set border with Russia Integrated Latvia/Estonia to German-Scandinavian culture room Integrated Lithuania later to Polish-Central-European culture room Grand Duchy of Lithuania the source of national pride for Lithuanians Integrated the whole region to the Western culture Reformation (16th century): Estonia and most of Latvia became protestant. Higher level of literacy national awakening took place earlier Lithuania remained catholic. Lower level of literacy national awakening took place later. A problem with Latgale region (in South-Eastern Latvia) Abolishing the serfdom (19th century) In Estonia and in Latvia earlier much rapid industrialization, urbanization and quicker social-economic development In Lithuania later slower industrialization and urbanization and slower social-economic development Exercises 1. Point out at least four most important events what did change the course of the history for the Baltic States (13th 20th century): 4 events for the rest of the region 4 events for Latvia/Estonia 4 events for Lithuania 2. What makes Lithuania different form rest of the Baltic countries? Point out critical junctures in Lithuanian history and compare them with Latvia/Estonia 3. Map the main historical differences between Latvia and Estonia! Exercise II 4. Here are the critical junctures of modernization. Compare the Baltic States with your home country: Reformation The first books printed in native languages, emergence of the wider national book market The first universities founded Emergence of centralized nation state (almost in the same borders like today) Start of national awakening and spread of nationalism The first newspapers in national languages Start of industrialization/urbanization The first railroad Suggested Reading Kiaupa, Z., Mäesalu, A., & Pajur, A, Straube, G. (2002). The History of the Baltic Countries. Tallinn: Avita O'Connor, K. (2003). History of the Baltic States. Greenwood Press Smith, D, J; Pabriks, A; Purs, A; Lane, T. (2002). The Baltic States. Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Routledge, London and New York.
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