International Scholars to Debate the Meaning of Insiders and Outsiders in the Post-Soviet World
Theorizing the Dynamics of Core-Periphery Relations: A Conference to Honor CEES Director Ivan Berend.
Published: Friday, January 30, 2004
Where does the border of Eastern Europe begin? Will the absorption of Eastern Europe into the European Union mean the end of the East-West divide? How will future generations view the core-periphery debate?
On January 30-31, 2004, the Clark Library will host a two-day conference in honor of Ivan Berend, UCLA History Professor and Director of the Center for European and Eurasian Studies, as he approaches his seventy-fifth birthday
The Core-Periphery Debate
The Conference, entitled, Theorizing the Dynamics of Core-Periphery Relations, will focus on the core-periphery debate and its contemporary significance. In the 1960s and 1970s leading academics argued that in the seventeenth century certain core countries in Western Europe broke away from traditional socio-economic patterns and rose to world dominance, while Eastern Europe stagnated under the imposition of second serfdom. Since the collapse of communism, however, it has become necessary to revisit the problems associated with the basic premise of this theory. The core-periphery debate rose to importance in the backdrop of the Cold War, when the obvious dichotomy in Europe was between a democratic capitalist West and a dictatorial communist East. Yet with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the declining significance of the East-West divide, several questions emerge: Where does the border of Eastern Europe begin? Will the absorption of Eastern Europe into the European Union mean the end of the East-West divide? How will future generations view the core-periphery debate? Is it possible that in the twenty-first century historians will view the core-periphery debate as little more than ideological struggles born out of the Cold War? Or, will the next generation of historians, political scientists, and sociologists continue to regard the seventeenth century as the critical period for distinguishing the West from the East? Alternatively, will a third option arise, as parts of the core-periphery debate are salvaged and other discarded?
Distinguished scholars on the program include historian Eric Hobsbawm, Daniel Chirot, Herman van der Wee, Jürgen Kocka, Iván Szelényi, Michael Mann, Perry Anderson, Eugen Weber, Robert Brenner, and Ivan Berend. Chairing the sessions will be UCLA Professors Gail Kligman, Geoffrey Symcox, Teofilo Ruiz, and David Sabean. UCLA Professor Peter Reill will open the conference.
Those wishing to attend the conference will need to register.
The Clark Library is located at 2520 Cimarron Street in Los Angeles.
The conference is co-sponsored by the UCLA Center for European and Eurasian Studies, the UCLA Center for Social Theory and Comparative History, the UCLA Department of History and the UCLA Eugen Weber Chair of Modern European History.