Kritika

Articles from Vol. 10, No. 3, Summer

"A Belgium of Our Own": The Sack of Russian Kalisz, August 1914
The Geneva Convention of 1864 and the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907 defined international standards for the just conduct of war and the proper treatment of civilians. From the first days of fighting in 1914, the belligerent powers accused one...
Back from the USSR: The Anti-Comintern's Publications on Soviet Russia in Nazi Germany (1935-41)
Joseph Goebbels's speech of 13 September 1935 on "communism unmasked," held at the party "rally of freedom" that introduced the antisemitic legislation of the "Nuremburg laws," marked the starting point of a propaganda campaign against the USSR that...
Ehrenburg and Grossman: Two Cosmopolitan Jewish Writers Reflect on Nazi Germany at War
After the German invasion in 1941, World War II became a major, if not the major, topic of Soviet literature. Among the countless fictional works on it, however, those by Ilya Ehrenburg (Il'ia Erenburg) and Vasilii Grossman emerge as distinctive in...
Entangled Histories in the Age of Extremes
The notion of the Sonderverhaltnis, or special relationship between Russia and Germany, is a distorting lens through which to look at relations between these countries (not to mention the broader cultures and civilizations they represented) even for...
Iron Revolutionaries and Salon Socialists Bolsheviks and German Communists in the 1920s and 1930s
When Osip Piatnitskii met German worker representatives for the first time in Berlin before World War I, the Bolshevik underground fighter experienced a veritable culture shock. In his memoirs published in 1927, the future Comintern functionary described...
Mortal Embrace: Germans and (Soviet) Russians in the First Half of the 20th Century
Historical Debates Surrounding the German-Russian Relationship This special issue of Kritika spotlights episodes from the primarily confrontational relationship between Germany and (Soviet) Russia in the first half of the 20th century. The multifaceted...
Return to Soviet Russia: Edwin Erich Dwinger and the Narratives of Barbarossa
Virtually unknown today, Edwin Erich Dwinger (1898-1981) emerged as one of the most popular German authors in Nazi Germany thanks to his firsthand accounts of his encounter with Russia in the years 1915-20. He very nearly single-handedly produced the...
"The Diaries of Fritzes and the Letters of Gretchens": Personal Writings from the German-Soviet War and Their Readers
On 12 June 1941, ten days before the German invasion of the Soviet Union, Vitalii Stekol'shchikov, a 19-year-old graduate of the Riazan' artillery school, was deployed from Riazan' to western Ukraine. In letters to his girlfriend Anna ("Ania, "An'ka,"...
The Intelligentsia Meets the Enemy: Educated Soviet Officers in Defeated Germany, 1945
"There She Is, Accursed Germany!" Major Lev Kopelev entered East Prussia on a Ford truck. There were no markers, so he had to distinguish the border himself: "It had already been agreed upon earlier: as soon as we crossed the border, we would mark...
United by Barbed Wire: Russian POWs in Germany, National Stereotypes, and International Relations, 1914-22
During World War I and the revolutionary turmoil in Central and Eastern Europe, Russian prisoners of war (POWs), 1.5 million strong and thus the largest group of enemy officers and men in German camps, became one of the few points of contact between...