An Expanded Bibliography and Reference Guide for
the Former USSR's Ethnic Germans: Issues of Ethnic Autonomy, Group
Repression, Cultural Assimilation, and Mass Emigration in the Twentieth
Century and Beyond.
By Eric J. Schmaltz, Ph.D.
Germans from Russia Heritage Collection, North Dakota State University
Libraries, Fargo, North Dakota, 2003, 246 pages, softcover.
The Germans from Russia Heritage Collection is pleased to announce
the publication of this landmark and important new book, An
Expanded Bibliography and Reference Guide for the Former USSR's
Ethnic Germans: Issues of Ethnic Autonomy, Group Repression, Cultural
Assimilation, and Mass Emigration in the Twentieth Century and Beyond,
by Eric J. Schmaltz, a recent Ph.D. history graduate from the University
Almost 300 pages in length, the book is dedicated to the Germans
from Russia diaspora community. The project took several years to
complete and grew out of the author's dissertation at the University
of Nebraska-Lincoln, "Reform, Rebirth, and Regret: The Early
Autonomy Movement of Ethnic Germans in the USSR, 1955-1989,"
and related research projects.
In the new millennium, this easy-to-read, but comprehensive, compilation
should serve as a welcome and useful addition for the Germans from
Russia community. In North America, it stands as the first such
reference guide to come out in a generation. This study has taken
advantage of the information explosion concerning the group since
the end of the Cold War and the opening up of many Soviet archives.
The 1990s were marked by the growth and advances in new information
technologies, the breakdown of old political and ideological barriers,
and the rise of the ethnic group's autonomy struggle in the former
USSR and mass emigration movement to Germany.
This impressive research tool is appropriately designed for scholars,
students, and general enthusiasts interested in the subject of Germans
from Russia, especially themes connected with autonomy, repression,
assimilation, and international population movements. It contains
hundreds of sources and entries in three languages (English, German,
and Russian), including hard-to-find materials. To assist readers,
the bibliography is accompanied by a very detailed chronicle of
events for the ethnic group in Russia from 1914 to the present.
The compilation also provides an extensive list of abbreviations,
a short list of defined technical terms in the bibliography, and
a brief explanation on the bibliography's form and content of entries.
A detailed, 60-page bibliographical-historiographical essay supplements
the 150-page bibliography. With numerous extensive endnotes, the
essay incorporates materials coming out since Gorbachev, including
a survey of ethnic-German newspapers and periodicals in the former
USSR. The essay outlines the general research trends taking place
in the former Soviet Union, Germany, and North America. At the same
time, it distinguishes the major features of some of the bibliography's
significant primary and secondary materials treating the ethnic
group's present cultural and political standing. It also sheds light
on the recent history and current status of the Russian Germans
predominant publishing groups, cultural associations, heritage societies,
and academic circles here and abroad, and even offers some insight
into the prospects for this global network of ethnic organizations--especially
with respect to the Internet, the so-called "electronic village"
or "digital town square" for this significant diaspora
community. Equally pertinent, it recommends several potential topics
for further study in North America on the history of cultural and
political autonomy for Russian Germans.
As a bonus, the volume contains two appendices of original translations
of the "Charter of Germans Expelled from Their Homelands"
(written in Stuttgart on 5 August 1950) and the "Declaration
on the Charter of Germans Expelled from Their Homelands from 5 August
1950" (composed in Stuttgart on 6 August 1960).
In this vast compilation, the author has utilized the American Historical
Society of Germans from Russia (AHSGR) archives and the Germans
from Russia Heritage Collection (GRHC), North Dakota State University
Libraries, Fargo, along with the Internet and other major academic
institutions and private collections. In a concise layout, the bibliography
is organized into 24 sections interspersed with brief annotations.
The categories include: addresses of ethnic organizations worldwide;
suggested Internet archival materials and electronic information
sources; almanacs, dictionaries, directories, encyclopedias, handbooks,
and lexicons; research tools and bibliographies; published autobiographies,
diaries, essays, letters, memoirs, novels, and poems; published
compilations of documents and speeches (source books); unpublished
documents or declarations; unpublished letters; films and videos;
audio recordings; booklets, special reports, and published interviews;
newspaper articles in Germany; North American newspaper articles
(in English and German); ethnic-German newspaper articles in the
USSR and CIS, including the Soviet-era Russian press (in German
and Russian); publications sponsored by the German government; books
(general works); books (specialized studies on the Russian Germans
and Aussiedler); articles in books; journal and magazine articles
(periodicals in English, German, and Russian); newsletters; posted
Internet publications; important public electronic-mail exchanges;
theses and dissertations in North America; and unpublished miscellaneous
materials and manuscripts.
Dr. William Wiest at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, writes: "In
a word, this is a `MUST HAVE' book for any serious scholar of the
history and current status of Germanic peoples who trace their ancestry
to or currently reside in Russia and the former USSR; for the rest
of us, this book will be an equally important part of our personal
libraries as we struggle to understand the broad sweep of complex
and often tragic events that have shaped the lives of "unsere
by Edna Boardman
by William M. Wiest
Review by Dr. La Vern J. Rippley