Myth, Identity, and Conflict: A Comparative Analysis of Romanian and Serbian Textbooks

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Lexington Books, Sep 16, 2011 - Political Science - 314 pages
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Myth, Identity, and Conflict: A Comparative Analysis of Romanian and Serbian Textbooks, by Anamaria Dutceac Segesten, is an examination of how history and politics became entangled in Romania and Serbia. In it, Segesten asks questions like: Is myth present in the history textbooks of Romania and Serbia? If so, are there differences in the ways these myths define the in-group and the relationship with the Other between a country that experienced interethnic conflict (Serbia) and a country that did not (Romania)? Do textbooks affect the odds that conflict will occur?

Segesten's findings confirm the presence of mythologized versions of the past in the history textbooks of both countries over the entire fifteen-year period studied (1992–2007), despite claims for professionalization of textbook-making. Myths of noble origins, of heroism and victimhood, appear in both cases. Segesten finds the language to be ideological and in favor of the ethnic majority, even if over time there is a slow tendency towards moderation (especially in Romania), probably due to the influence of the European Union. Ultimately, Myth, Identity, and Conflict, by Anamaria Dutceac Segesten, questions the alleged power of history textbooks to make a difference in ethnically divided societies prone to conflicts.
 

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Contents

1 Introduction
1
2 The History Textbook in Context
17
3 Education Conict and Ethnic Identity
37
4 Myth
73
5 Romanian National Myths
87
6 Serbian National Myths
97
7 Common Myths to Serbia and Romania
107
8 Myths in Textbooks
125
9 Representation of the Self
159
10 Representation of the Other
217
11 Conclusion
241
Appendix
255
Bibliography
269
Index
301
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About the author (2011)

Anamaria Dutceac Segesten is a postdoctoral fellow with the Centre for Modern European Studies at the University of Copenhagen.

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