Conference „World-Counter-Revolutions"

International Conference funded by Volkswagen Foundation

Organized by Prof. Dr. Stefan Rinke (Freie Universität Berlin) and

Prof. Dr. Michael Wildt (Humboldt Universität Berlin)

9 to 11 June 2016 - Hanover-Herrenhausen





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1917 was an important year for historical change on a global scale - not only due to the American entry into the War and the Russian Revolution. The year can rightly be considered the turning point of the First World War and the foundations for the decisive structures of the short 20th century. Contemporary observers recognized these global connections very well. But in the historiography limited to the Nation State these global connections did not matter for decades. This has changed during recent years. New research projects have analyzed the transnational links between the innumerable revolts, rebellions and revolutions and the following violent reactions in all parts of the world. They have focused on the scarcely known incidents far away from the global "centers", investigated south-south relations and revealed new research potentials.

The conference will unite these new investigations and open up space for dialogues. Transnational and comparative approaches will be considered as well as perspectives from social, economic, cultural and political history. The revolutions and counterrevolutions of the years 1917-1920 will be compared. Their entanglements will be analyzed in a global context. How did the revolutionary potential develop in different world regions before 1917? What was the impact of the Russian Revolution? How can transfers of knowledge, experiences and practices be described? What kind of images were spread on a transnational scale? How can the relationship between local and external causes be described? What was the importance of violence in the disputes of the late war years and the early post-war years? What kind of reactions developed? To what extent were revolutionary and counterrevolutionary movements in different contexts and continents linked to each other?

We are looking forward to welcoming researchers at the conference "World-Counter-Revolutions: 1917-1920 from a Global Perspective" from June 9-11, 2016 in Hanover, Germany. The program is available here.


Panel I: The Russian Revolution in Europe and Beyond
Panel II: Anti-Colonial and Anti-Imperial Movements
Panel III: The Role of Violence
Panel IV: Nationalist Movements and Transnational Connections
Panel V: Visions of Order  
Panel VI: Perils of Democracy
Panel VII: Cultural Manifestations of Revolution

Poster Session: Presentations by Young Scholars


Stefan Rinke (Freie Universität Berlin) and
Michael Wildt (Humboldt Universität Berlin)



Keynote: Jörn Leonhard

Dietrich Beyrau, Michael Jabara Carley, Abdulhamit Kirmizi, Jie-Hyun Lim, Tomio Izao, Robert Gerwarth, María Inés Tato, Guoqi Xu, Klaus Weinhauer, Adam Tooze, Patrick J. Houlihan, Enric Ucelay-Da Cal, Ricardo Pérez Montfort, David Hopkins


There are no fees for attendance but registration is essential. If you would like to attend the conference, please register on the website of Volkswagen Foundation.

We have a waiting list for the conference and can offer your place to another if you cannot attend. Therefore, please cancel your attendance using the registration tool if you cannot attend the conference.

Attendees can book a room at the Mercure Hotel Hannover City.


The conference language is English.

Venue and public transport

The conference is held at Herrenhausen Palace, a new conference center in Hanover, Germany.

You can reach the venue by subway: Take line 4 or 5 in the direction of "Stöcken" or "Garbsen" and get off at station "Herrenhäuser Gärten".