Malone, Paul M., Germano-Slavica
This year, 2003, marks the thirtieth anniversary of Germano-Slavica, which was founded in 1973 by the late J. William Dyck at the University of Waterloo. Dr. Dyck served as the journal's editor from its Spring 1973 issue until 1981, when the editorship passed to Sigfrid Hoefert; after a further decade, John Whiton took up the post. In those days, Germano-Slavica appeared twice a year, in spring and fall.
Much has changed in the last three decades, and not all for the better. Indeed, when Germano-Slavica felt obliged to change to an annum publication in the early 1990s for economic reasons, Dr. Dyck quite reasonably expressed the fear that this meant the journal's death-knell. It is true that, as in so many quarters of academia, the resources available to journals--and particularly to specialized journals such as Germano-Slavica--have shrunk. It is also apparent that the demographics of both our readership and our potential contributors have changed somewhat; and it is possible, though by no means certain, that here too shrinkage has occurred.
Some things, however, have not changed much at all. A brief message from the founding editor at the beginning of Germano-Slavica's inaugural issue bears repeating in part here:
One of the most significant trends in the humanities during the past decade [i.e., the 1960s and early 1970s] has been the phenomenal growth of cross-cultural or comparative studies. The importance of transcending the limits of the primary "vertical," mono-cultural orientation of the past in favour of a broader, "horizontal," bi-cultural or even multi-cultural view is now as well established as it is apparent. It is hoped that as a periodical, devoted to comparative studies in the fields of Germanic and Slavic literatures, cultures, and languages, Germano-Slavica can serve as a focal point for significant contributions towards the better understanding of these peoples and their interrelationships. …