Freie Universität Berlin


World Counter Revolutions Conference

09.06.2016 - 11.06.2016

1917-1920 From a Global Perspective - International Conference funded by the Volkswagen Foundation

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.

  • 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

Keynote: Prof. Dr. Jörn Leonhard

Zeit & Ort

09.06.2016 - 11.06.2016

Schloss Herrenhausen, Auditorium
Herrenhäuser Straße 5
30419 Hannover

Weitere Informationen

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


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.

Conference language is English.

Venue and public transport: The conference is held at Herrenhausen Palace, a new conference center in Hanover, Germany.