T5: Americanism, Wilsonism and Nationalism in Interwar Romania.The American Red Cross, the Royal House of Romania and the "Dialogue between Romanian and American Children" ~ Dr. Daniel CITIRIGĂ
After nearly a hundred years of isolationist foreign policy based on the Monroe Doctrine, America entered World War I, and at the Paris Peace Conference, Woodrow Wilson was the first American president to cross the ocean in an official capacity. But he was coming to Paris not only in the name of America, but with an agenda concerning the entire globe, determined to fundamentally change the foundations of international relations (Charles Zorgbibe). From the politics rooted in the balance of power, which he saw as the main source of conflict, he would make the transition to the world of international institutions, epitomized by the League of Nations and enshrined in principles that were described as visionary by the president’s supporters, and lambasted as utopian by his detractors. What is certain is that Wilson played a decisive role in redefining the borders of Central Europe, in accordance with the Inquiry recommendations and the principle of self-determination (Larry Wolff). Afterwards, the idea that the rule of law should prevail over the use of force led to a series of debates centered on the Wilsonian vision in which the small countries enjoyed equal rights with the big ones, and the majority was envisioned to protect the minority, rather than destroy it. At the same time, the failures associated with these principles are also part of the discussion on Wilsonism since xenophobic nationalism, ethnicism and opposition to being citizens of a world rooted in universal peace would come to characterize the 20th century and especially the interwar period. In Romania, the union of the three regions – Bessarabia, Bucovina and Transylvania – would also be based on the principle of self-determination. Notably, the same concept also applied to the issue of protecting minorities and different ways of organizing the state: while officials in the Old Kingdom preferred the centralist model, some leaders in the new provinces were in favor of a regionalist or even autonomous form of organization.
Wilsonism and Americanism are concepts whose application deserves special attention also when taking into account the humanitarian aid sent across the ocean to post-war Romania. In this sense, we identify two research directions: an ideological dimension and an imagological one. Where the studies written by Ion Stanciu and Anca Crețu present the activity of various American organizations in Romania during this period and detail their impact on Romanian society, our analysis focuses on the message promoted by the American Junior Red Cross, which at that time, was a newly established organization dedicated to young Americans. Here, the messages published in the "Junior Red Cross News" magazine, on behalf of American children play a special role, since they conveyed the idea that post-war Americanism aimed to create a better world with the help of the youth. We will present how the Romanian representatives took up this challenge to reciprocate by examining the content of the sister publication from Romania: "Revista Crucii Roșii a Tinerimii". Our analysis will also include the letters that American schoolchildren and other young people sent to Queen Maria and Princess Ileana. Last but not least, our study will also follow how the American nurses regarded Romania in those years. The documentation will be based on primary sources from the National Archives Records Administration, the National Archives of Romania, the Archive of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from Bucharest, the Romanian Red Cross Archive, as well as letters, memos and diaries of those involved. In terms of secondary sources, we will also consult the literature on the history of the Red Cross during the interwar period.
Background image source: Red cross on white concrete building photo – Free Usa Image on Unsplash
All members of the project The Ethos of Dialogue and Education: Romanian - American Cultural Negotiations (1920-1940) have made excellent contributions as part of the Negocierile româno-americane în educație, știință, cultură și artă/ Romanian American Negotiations in Education, Science, Culture, and Arts Conference, with a wide-ranging area of interests and subjects.
Their presentations were the following:
A richly informative first day of the International Conference Romanian American Negotiations in Education, Science, Culture, and Arts/Negocierile româno-americane în educație, știință, cultură și artă.
We are happy to have hosted a first conference day with such a diverse group of researchers and specialists (in order of appearance): Prof. Dr. Cornel Sigmirean, Prof. Dr. Laurențiu-Dănuț Vlad, Dr. Carmen Andraș, Dr. Daniel Citirigă, Dr. Eduard Andrei, Dr. Dipl.-Ing. Maria Boștenaru Dan, Dr. Octaviana Jianu, Dr. Roxana Mihaly, Conf. Dr. Giuseppe Motta, Dr. Grant T. Harward, and Dr. Sonia D. Andraș.
The topics ranged from American students in the USA, different perspectives on the Romania and the 1939-1940 New York World Fair, War Correspondents’ Reports from Romania, Romania's representation in the Junior Red Cross News, the Bucharest works of Jewish architect Rudolf Fraenkel, Brâncuși's legacy at the 30th edition of the Venice Biennale, Romanian cultural diplomacy in the USA, the idea of Vin Americanii in Romania today and its WW2 memory, and Romanian women's representation in American Vogue.
The second day is underway now, continuing the interesting sessions of papers and engaging conversations under the aegis of our project's theme.
See the full programme here: Conference Programme: Negocierile româno-americane în educație, știință, cultură și artă/ Romanian American Negotiations in Education, Science, Culture, and Arts - EDERA (weebly.com)
Find the abstracts in English here.
Find the abstracts in Romanian here.
Conference Programme: Negocierile româno-americane în educație, știință, cultură și artă/ Romanian American Negotiations in Education, Science, Culture, and Arts
15 iunie 2023 / 15 June 2023
10:00 – 12:00 – Etosul dialogului și educației / The Ethos of Dialogue and Education – Moderatori / Chairs: Prof. Dr. Cornel Sigmirean, Prof. Dr. Laurențiu-Dănuț Vlad
14:30 – 16:30 De la idealuri la ideologie: Negocieri culturale, artistice și politice româno-americane / From Ideals to Ideology: Romanian-American Cultural, Artistic, and Political Negotiations II
10.00 – 12.00 – The Rise of the Far-Right, Political Violence and the Crisis of the Liberal Order in Interwar Romania: Historical Cases and Contemporary Debates
14.00 – 16.00 – American Influences and Romanian Religious Developments in Romania (1920-1968)
Related Research: Crossing the Borders of Cultures: the First Wave of American War Correspondents in Romania. The Transylvanian Case (Carmen Andraș, 2016)
Abstract: In her study "Crossing the Borders of Cultures: the First Wave of American War Correspondents in Romania. The Transylvanian Case", Carmen Andraş focuses on American war correspondents’ representations about Romania between 1916 and the early 1930s. Methodologically, the author deploys the respective analysis in the framework of travel studies and imagology. Carmen Andraş identifies two waves of 20th century American correspondents who travelled to Romania. The respective paper concentrates on the first wave, beginning with World War I, when most of the American reporters were coming from Russia and continuing until the early 1930s, when the installation of dictatorship and political right wing extremism was now obvious in Romania. In the author’s opinion, the second wave of American correspondents coming to Romania, started in the late 1930s and early 1940s and was much more representative, both in quantity and quality. Generally, the American interests in Romania in the circumstances of world wars were military and diplomatic, economic, and political. Generally, the American war correspondents paved the way for a better knowledge and understanding of Romania in the USA.
Keywords: Border Studies, War Studies, Political History, Imagology, Cultural and Intellectual History, Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, Travel Studies
Suggested Citation: [Chicago] Andraș, Carmen. 2016. “Crossing the Borders of Cultures: The First Wave of American War Correspondents in Romania and the Transylvanian Case (1916-Early 1930s).” In Crossing Borders: Insights into the Cultural and Intellectual History of Transylvania (1848-1948), edited by Carmen Andraș and Cornel Sigmirean, 199–232. Documente, Istorie, Mărturii. Cluj-Napoca: Argonaut & Gatineau, Canada, Symphologic Publishing.
Download the PDF on Academia Edu.
Related Research: De la cosmetologie la cosmiatrie: Aurel Voina și manipularea istoriei personale (Sonia D. Andraș, 2021)
De la cosmetologie la cosmiatrie: Aurel Voina și manipularea istoriei personale (Cosmetology to Cosmiatry: Aurel Voina and the Manipulation of Personal History)
Subject(s): Interwar Period (1920 - 1939), Post-War period (1950 - 1989), History of Communism
Published by: Editura Academiei Române
Keywords: cosmetology; cosmiatry; Aurel Voina; eugenics; interwar; Communism; Romania;
Summary/Abstract: This paper explores the methodological and discursive transition in Aurel Voina’s theoretical conceptualisation of cosmetic science. The primary focus is the rewriting of personal and professional identity, assessing how Aurel Voina negotiated his conceptual and practical expertise from his role as eugenics ideologue and policy maker in the interwar era, to a much more marginal position as medical professional in Communist Romania. The aim is to identify common elements and identify how deep did the historical manipulation protrude. This paper thus offers a closer view of political changes determining calibrations in physical and conceptual self-representation, considering concepts of fluid identity and manipulation of memory.
Keywords: cosmetology, cosmiatry, Aurel Voina, eugenics, interwar, Communism, Romania
Suggested Citation: Andraș, Sonia D. 2021. “De la cosmetologie la cosmiatrie: Aurel Voina și manipularea istoriei personale.” Anuarul Institutului de Istorie »George Barițiu« - Series HISTORICA, HISTORICA, , no. 60: 393–402.
Read/Download the full PDF paper by clicking this link.
Article page on CEEOL: CEEOL - Article Detail
Full contents of Anuarul Institutului de Istorie »George Bariţiu« - Series HISTORICA (Yearbook of the Institute of History »George Bariţiu« - Series HISTORICA), issue LX/2021: CEEOL - Journal Detail
Related Research: LOCATION, DISLOCATION AND RE-LOCATION: INTERCULTURAL AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION ACROSS POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC BORDERS (Carmen Andraș, 2014)
LOCATION, DISLOCATION AND RE-LOCATION: INTERCULTURAL AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION ACROSS POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC BORDERS
Carmen Andraș, Scientific Researcher, PhD., “Gheorghe Șincai” Institute for Social Sciences and the Humanities, Târgu Mureș
Abstract: The paper focuses on significant interpretations of the border concept in the interdisciplinary framework of border, travel and cultural studies, with reference to a particular case of a Transylvanian’s migration to the United States in the first decades of the 20th century. The theoretical foundation of the paper lies in the definition of: porosity as a main characteristic of border (Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, Bruno Dupeyron, “Borders, Borderlands, and Porosity”, 2007); Zygmunt Bauman’s concept of “fluid modernity” adapted to border analysis to scrutinize their shift of significance from “solid” markers of difference to “fluid” symbols of unity and communication (Zygmunt Bauman, Liquid Modernity, 2006). In connection to the concept of border, I will further define the concepts of location, dis-location and re-location in the specific situation of the travel and migration across international borders, which reflect a characteristic of modernity: the individual’s freedom of mobility beyond political borders initially meant to separate people and nations. I will apply the above mentioned concepts and methodologies to outline the stages of political, economic, cultural and identity border crossing in Ioan Blendea’s case (Din Ardeal in America. 35 de ani in Statele Unite/From Transylvania to America. 35 Years in the United States, published at Sibiu in 1945). He is a representative of a noteworthy phenomenon in Transylvania’s cultural, social and economic history: the migration of a large part of the rural population to the United States at the crossing of the 19- 20th centuries. The principal reason for this voluntary dis-placement (dis-location) was economic: it was the American mirage of prosperity in an era of industrial development and establishment of the bourgeois ideals of wealth, which attracted the Transylvanian villagers. Their place of birth was an almost pre-modern society, still suffocated between the borders of a dying empire. Temporally, Transylvania symbolized the past; spatially, it represented the place of birth, family and traditions. America was instead the place of future emancipation and fortune. However well adapted to a new American identity pattern, their dream was to come back to their original place and bring along their fortune for the benefit of their families. It was thus the story of an original location, followed by a process of dis-location and a final re-location, all due to the “fluidity” of a promising modernity.
Keywords: borders, migration, travel, intercultural mobility, dis-location, re-location
Read/Download the full PDF (Open Access) by clicking this link.
Suggested Citation: Carmen Andraș, "Location, Dislocation and Re-Location: Intercultural and
International Communication across Political and Economic Borders," in Iulian Boldea (editor), Globalization and Intercultural Dialogue. Multidisciplinary Perspectives. Secțiunea Political
Sciences, Târgu-Mureș, Arhipelag XXI, Vol 1, 2014, pp. 91-104. ISBN 978-606-93691-3-5
Link to the volume contents: GIDNI - GIDNI-01/vol01-Pol (upm.ro)
New Publication: THE AMERICAN COLLECTORS AND THEIR INTEREST IN ROMANIAN ART IN THE INTERWAR PERIOD (Roxana Mihaly)
THE AMERICAN COLLECTORS AND THEIR INTEREST IN ROMANIAN ART IN THE INTERWAR PERIOD
(THE AMERICAN COLLECTORS AND THEIR INTEREST IN ROMANIAN ART IN THE INTERWAR PERIOD)
New Publication: A RELIGIOUS COLD WAR: INHERITING THE INTERWAR US RELIGIOUS POLICY TOWARDS EASTERN EUROPE IN COMMUNIST ROMANIA (Anca Șincan)
A RELIGIOUS COLD WAR: INHERITING THE INTERWAR US RELIGIOUS POLICY TOWARDS EASTERN EUROPE IN COMMUNIST ROMANIA
(A RELIGIOUS COLD WAR: INHERITING THE INTERWAR US RELIGIOUS POLICY TOWARDS EASTERN EUROPE IN COMMUNIST ROMANIA)
Dissemination: Câteva date cu privire la construcția, amenajarea și organizarea activității Casei Românești la New York World’s Fair (1939-1940) on Cooperativa Gusti (Laurențiu Vlad)
The article CÂTEVA DATE CU PRIVIRE LA CONSTRUCȚIA, AMENAJAREA ȘI ORGANIZAREA ACTIVITĂȚII CASEI ROMÂNEȘTI LA NEW YORK WORLD’S FAIR (1939–1940). RESTITUIRI DOCUMENTARE DIN ARHIVELE NAȚIONALE ȘI ALE MAE: 1938–1939 (SOME DETAILS REGARDING THE LAYOUT AND CONSTRUCTION OF THE ROMANIAN HOUSE AND THE ORGANIZATION OF ITS ACTIVITIES DURING THE NEW YORK WORLD’S FAIR (1939–1940). DOCUMENTS FROM THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND THE ARCHIVES OF THE MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS: 19) by Laurențiu Vlad, has appeared as Câteva date cu privire la construcția, amenajarea și organizarea activității Casei Românești la New York World’s Fair (1939-1940) has appeared on Cooperativa Gusti.
Click this link to access the article on Cooperativa Gusti.
The Ethos of Dialogue and Education