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> Neagu Djuvara and his oppinions
MMM
Posted: February 06, 2011 09:54 am
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Oh, if you're talking about Ioan-Aurel Pop and his "anti-Boia" writings, I've read some as well, but I'm still not very persuaded by them. Like always, the truth is somewhere in the middle.
re: History writing: always history is tampered with (if not invented / rewritten) by the winners (or masters of the day), be they USSR or USA (Uniunea Sovietică Ailaltă)! That's the way things are, unfortunately!
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Amicus_Plato
Posted: February 07, 2011 07:41 am
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QUOTE (udar @ February 05, 2011 09:16 pm)
There is another thing i observed, similar in a way with what happened in the 50's, when some historians received indications from Moscow how to rewrite history. Now some of them seem to receive indications from some EU departments i think, for the same reason, to rewrite history. Problem is that sometimes the history is more close to reality just as it was know, and dont need to be rewrited or "demythized" to look "good" for the new political concepts.

There is no need for him to receive indications, and thinking that people who for various reasons express ideas which are "de bon ton" in a particular context must necessarily be puppets to a more or less occult master looks to me as a pernicious mental mechanism. I agree that Boia's books are so-and-so, with regrets I have to say that Boia is far from being an important historian and he exaggerates (more or less consciously, perhaps for commercial reasons) in many aspects with his "demythologization", but from here to see him as a servant who obeys orders received from a certain center of political power is an even greater exaggeration.

This post has been edited by Amicus_Plato on February 07, 2011 09:09 am
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Imperialist
Posted: February 07, 2011 08:49 am
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QUOTE (Amicus_Plato @ February 07, 2011 07:41 am)
There is no need for him to receive indications, and thinking that people who for various reasons express ideas which are "de bon ton" in a particular context must necessarily be puppets to a more or less occult master looks to me as a pernicious mental mechanism. I agree that Boia's books are so-and-so, with regrets I have to say that Boia is far from being an important historian and he exaggerates (more or less consciously, perhaps for commercial reasons) in many aspects with his "demystification", but from here to see him as a servant who obeys orders received from a certain center of political power is an even greater exaggeration.

In principle I agree with you but I have to say that's not necessarily how it works (center - orders - servant/puppet).

It's far more decentralized and the basic gist is that the center chooses to promote/help certain persons that spread the "right" ideas. Those persons become "formatori de opinie" and their job is to shape and defend, with their ideas and theories, the status-quo. After a while all the others figure out how it works so they conform to this in order to get published. Thus, only a small number of hardcore "dead-enders" are left to promote, with scant resources, a point of view that opposes the status-quo. And they won't get much, if any, attention in the main stream.

This post has been edited by Imperialist on February 07, 2011 08:51 am
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Amicus_Plato
Posted: February 07, 2011 10:15 am
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QUOTE (Imperialist @ February 07, 2011 08:49 am)
It's far more decentralized and the basic gist is that the center chooses to promote/help certain persons that spread the "right" ideas. Those persons become "formatori de opinie" and their job is to shape and defend, with their ideas and theories, the status-quo. After a while all the others figure out how it works so they conform to this in order to get published. Thus, only a small number of hardcore "dead-enders" are left to promote, with scant resources, a point of view that opposes the status-quo. And they won't get much, if any, attention in the main stream.

There will always be people eager to please the status quo for obtaining scholarship/fellowship, advancing their career, making a name of themselves etc. In relation to them the status quo acts more like a censor than a guide, i.e. sometimes too much zeal or on the contrary, a little bit of authenticity, may cost them seriously. In such "academic" circles there is a lot of envy, animosity and fierce competition, and those who become "opinion makers" have to do serious rope dancing in order to keep their privileged positions.

This post has been edited by Amicus_Plato on February 07, 2011 01:56 pm
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Radub
Posted: February 07, 2011 02:26 pm
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I agree! There was no need for an "order from ... [insert master here]" for anyone to alter the history of their own nation for their own gain (or safety). Many local historians gladly "embellished" facts to suit certain lines of thought. And that did not happen only in Romania.

Remember Ceausescu's obsession with Mircea the Elder? Ceausescu liked to identify with Mircea. As Ceausescu was getting old, any association with Mircea "the Elder" suddenly became imprudent in a world where the leader had to be seen as a permanently virile young buck. So... Mircea was relabelled from "the Elder" to Mircea "the Great" when Sergiu Nicolaescu released his (shockingly bad) film in 1989. As people were getting confused about Mircea's vintage or greatness, Mircea was quickly relabelled just... Mircea... neither old, not great, just... Mircea. Thankfully, that happened for a brief period of time as Ceausescu was quickly dispatched soon after, at which point Mircea became the elder again.

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MMM
Posted: February 07, 2011 03:02 pm
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Oh, there is no need for a direct order or an assumed "master of puppets"; some are so willingly to serve and bend over, that from time to time one almost has to emerge like a leader of oppinion! It happened in Romania as well, in 1968, in 1989, maybe in 2004... but that's politics! No more! :P
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IoanTM
Posted: January 04, 2012 02:21 pm
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QUOTE (Amicus_Plato @ February 07, 2011 07:41 am)
{...}but from here to see him as a servant who obeys orders received from a certain center of political power is an even greater exaggeration.

I'd agree with such an argument - mainly because such accusation ( "being a servant of X" ) is generally advanced without additional/real arguments - but ... there is also a major BUT here ... I also found out ( when I read first time Boia's books ) very strange the way in which he clearly ignores/doesn't present "as a balancing factor" events & arguments whose for sure he is aware of (*)... and present almost only events and interpretations whose support his personal view of history & presented period.

I'll give few examples ( more is likely to be possible to be presented ... of course ) :

- Constantly ( and almost obsessively ) L. Boia praise "multi-ethnical entities" versus "national states" on dubious base but with quite a "transparent goal" : to present EU - preferable with much enhanced central-powers - as a "(european) history terminus point". Is worth to note that there is no sign to acknowledge the fact that "Monet method" is anything but not a democratic process ( not even vaguely one ) or that "voluntary confederacies of different cultures/people(popoare)" are quite rare ( and unstable ! ) institutions in history and are not necessary economical and political successes ( see India for example ). Interesting ... "demythologization process" seems to apply only to a specific level ! :)
- L. Boia tendentiously/purely simple wrong present the : born of Romanian nationalism, revival of Romanian language use and so on as a XIXth century event owed ( datorat ? ) mostly to Scoala Ardeleana movement ( and, as sort of concession, to Pasoptist movement ). He add to this a sort of "confesional/religious note" - due to manner in which he outline the fact that members of Scoala Ardeleana movement was eastern-catholic opposed to orthodox majority. Well ... while the importance of "Scoala Ardeleana" for Romanian nationalism in Transilvanya is almost beyond doubt - it is a veery interesting & suspect that L. Boia didn't mention at all that the Romanian language was at that moment well structured & established for almost two centuries ... due to effort of Ortodox monks to translate the Holly Bible ( culminating with the complete & modern translation of "Bible from Bucuresti" in 1688 ;) ) and due to implication of Vallachian & Moldovan rules to impose it as the only language in their administration. It's interesting to note that the first time when official papers was kept only in Romanian was during rule of Michael The Brave - a good counter-argument to L. Boia thesis that he was just a "eastern contodiere" ... ;)
Regarding this aspect - basically all important cultural figures from Romanian provinces pre-XIXth century ( for e.g. orthodox monks like Varlaam and Dosoftei ) are ... virtually purged from L. Boia "version of history" and their work & influence ... never mentioned ! :ph34r: It's hardly to believe for me that this is not a deliberate omission ... the alternative will be to consider that L. Boia purely and simple didn't ever learn about them ... which I found impossible for a professional historian.

And considering this situation ... where are the limits and honesty in "proposed de-mythised" history ? :P
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ANDREAS
Posted: January 04, 2012 03:43 pm
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Happy New Year to you too IoanTM,
I agree with you in the problem of "demythisation of history", listening some days ago, an interesting discussion about mythologizing history process in today's Russia, who is a continuing process started before the end of Soviet Union! The two young Russian historians claimed, with solid arguments, the necessity of myths in the nation's conscience, and the need for some of these myths to live in every russian soul! I only want to point out that, although I am convinced that the truth must prevail, it's not good "to became more Catholic than the Pope" and to find myths where there were none, as I suspect Lucian Boia is trying! I only express my opinion...
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