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Mark, James

Mark, James

Individual Fellow

Global Decolonisation and Rethinking European History Since 1945

How did the end of European Empires shape the processes of Europeanisation in the second half of the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries? How were its dominant iterations– such as neoliberal or ‘fortress’ Europe – forged in the reaction to this transformation? How were anti-colonial visions of Europe reshaped? How does such historical work help to explain the current ‘crisis of Europeanness’ from Brexit to the Balkans?

Project Description

Post-war European history has been until very recently remarkably insular. Bringing the dynamics of global decolonisation back to the heart of the continent’s history, this project explores how the collapse of Empire moulded Europeans’ identities and the processes of Europeanisation from the mid-twentieth to early twenty-first centuries. Particular attention will be paid to Eastern Europe, connecting histories of global decolonisation to its late Cold War politics and culture, the decline and fall of Communism, the region’s ‘return to Europe’ and to the contemporary rise of populism and new oppositions to westernisation in the region. The fellowship will involve a conference co-organised between the Universities of Amsterdam and Exeter, network building, collaboration with Dutch scholars, and the completion of a monograph.

Selected Publications

1) The Unfinished Revolution: Making Sense of the Communist past in central-eastern Europe (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2010)
2) Europe’s 1968: Voices of Revolt (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013).
3) 1989: A Global History of Eastern Europe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019)

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