The selected bibliography about Latvian history.

To people who wants to make more detailed look on Latvian History rather then my short articles here I will give you a list of good books and sites about Latvia and the Baltics. I will update this list if some new info will come.

The bibliography in English.

The Teutonic Knights: A Military History

The Teutonic Knights were powerful and ferocious advocates of holy war. Their history is suffused with crusading, campaigning and struggle. Feared by their enemies but respected by medieval Christendom, the knights and their Order maintained a firm hold over the Baltic and northern Germany and established a formidable regime which flourished across Central Europe for 300 years. This major new book surveys the gripping history of the knights and their Order and relates their rise to power; their struggles against Prussian pagans; the series of wars against Poland and Lithuania; the clash with Alexander Nevsky’s Russia; and the gradual stagnation of the order in the fourteenth century. The book is replete with dramatic episodes – such as the battle on frozen Lake Peipus in 1242, or the disaster of Tannenberg – but focuses primarily on the year-after-year struggle to maintain power, fend of incursions and raiding bands and to launch crusades against unbelieving foes. And it was the crusade – with knights demonstrating their valour, daring and knightly worth – which chiefly characterised and breathed life into this militant, conquering Holy Order.

 

History of Latvia. The 20th Century

Daina Bleiere, Ilgvars Butulis, Inesis Feldmanis, Aivars Stranga, Antonijs Zunda

This book is designed to help to understand what happened here and why, what decisions were made and who made them, and what influences shaped Latvia and Latvians in the 20th century and which ones they hope to continue and which ones they hope to escape in the future. It has been prepared by a group of writers on the basis of both published and archival materials. And it includes both scholarly notes and a suggested bibliography.
Published by Jumava, 2006, 559 pages, hard cover, ISBN: 9984380386

Book also available in German, French and Russian

The Latvians: A Short History (Studies of Nationalities)

by Andrejs Plakans

This is the first English-language volume that brings the history of Latvia to the threshold of the twenty-first century. Until the reestablishment of Latvian independence in 1991, Stoviet dominance served for nearly fifty years to hinder publication of any complete and objective historical record of the region. Plakans now places the evolution and formation of the Latvian nation in a balanced, historical framework that stretches from the early medieval period to the present. Particular emphasis is given to the period between the Latvian “national awakening” of 1816—1819 and the emergence of an independent Latvia in 1918. From this point forward, the book extensively chronicles an evolving Latvian state structure, provides an appendix that summarizes all changes and important officeholders, and explains the current systems of political parties. This post perestroika historical narrative should contribute significantly to assessing the likely hood of Latvia’s survival as an independent republic.

Concise History of the Baltic States (Cambridge Concise Histories)

by Andrejs Plakans

The Baltic region is frequently neglected in broader histories of Europe and its international significance can be obscured by separate treatments of the various Baltic states. With this wide-ranging survey, Andrejs Plakans presents the first integrated history of three Baltic peoples – Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians – and draws out the common threads to show how it has been shaped by their location in a strategically desirable corner of Europe. Subordinated in turn by Baltic German landholders, the Polish nobility and gentry, and then by Russian and Soviet administrators, the three nations have nevertheless kept a their distinctive identities – significantly retaining three separate languages in an ethnically diverse region. The book traces the countries’ evolution from their ninth-century tribal beginnings to their present status as three thriving and separate nation states, focusing particularly on the region’s complex twentieth-century history, which culminated in the eventual re-establishment of national sovereignty after 1991.

“Northern Europe in the early modern period(the Baltic World 1492 – 1772)

by David G. Kirby

This is the first in a sequence of books which explores the history of The Baltic World and Northern Europe. In this period, Sweden was a major European power, occupying a central position in international politics. Her rise and decline, and the passing of regional hegemony to the new powers of Russia and Prussia, are central features in the book. Dr Kirby describes the evolving social and political systems of the principal Baltic states of the time, he gives the key events and processes in European history a new interest and freshness by showing them from the unfamiliar perspective of the northern world.

The Baltic World 1772-1993: Europe’s Northern Periphery in an Age of Change

by David G. Kirby

Topics include different periods in Baltic history such as: the age of revolution between 1772 and 1815; states and unions between 1815 and the revolutions of 1848; the end of the Russian empire in 1905-1917; and changes in the 20th century.

The History of the Baltic States

Kevin O’Connor

The Baltic states—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania—are nestled in northeastern Europe, where they lie at a crossroad of European culture. This is the most recent and up-to-date narrative history of the Baltic states, providing readers with an ideal starting point for research on the area. It includes a timeline of major events, biographic sketches of noteworthy historical figures, a glossary, and a bibliographic essay.
\ollectively, the Balkan states have been both a transmitter of culture and a victim of larger, more powerful nations’ aspirations. Their ethnically and religiously diverse natives continue to struggle with the question of identity, yet the Balts have had relatively peaceful relations with each other for some 600 years. With the fall of the Soviet Union, the Baltic states returned to Europe and seem intent on preserving the spirit of cooperation and solidarity that emerged during their struggle for independence more than a decade ago. This is the most recent and up-to-date narrative history of the Baltic states, providing readers with an ideal starting point for research on the area.

Latvia as an Independent State

Dr. Alfred Bilmanis

A handbook on Latvia is being published at this time to satisfy many requests from interested Americans who would like to knoiv more than is offered by some diction aries, yearbooks and almanacs, etc., about Latvias geo graphy, population, history, administration, cultural and economic life and international position. The facts reviewed in this book are compiled from works of Latvian scientists, official pjiblications, geo graphical and guide books. This publication is actually a revised edition of the authors LATVIA IN THE MAKING which first appeared in 1928, and is out of print. The Author Washington, D. C. KANSAS CITY.

The Case for Latvia. Disinformation Campaigns Against a Small Nation: Fourteen Hard Questions and Straight Answers about a Baltic Country.

by Jukka Rislakki
What do we know about Latvia and the Latvians? A Baltic (not Balkan) nation that emerged from fifty years under the Soviet Union – interrupted by a brief but brutal Nazi-German occupation and a devastating war – now a member of the European Union and NATO. Yes, but what else? Relentless accusations keep appearing, especially in Russian media, often repeated in the West: “Latvian soldiers single-handedly saved Lenin’s revolution in 1917″, “Latvians killed Tsar Nikolai II and the Royal family”, “Latvia was a thoroughly anti-Semitic country and Latvians started killing Jews even before the Germans arrived in 1941″, “Nazi revival is rampant in today’s Latvia”, “The Russian minority is persecuted in Latvia. . .” True, false or in-between? The Finnish journalist and author Jukka Rislakki examines charges like these and provides an outline of Latvia’s recent history while attempting to separate documented historical fact from misinformation and deliberate disinformation. His analysis helps to explain why the Baltic States (population 7 million) consistently top the enemy lists in public opinion polls of Russia (143 million). His knowledge of the Baltic languages allows him to make use of local sources and up-to-date historical research. He is a former Baltic States correspondent for Finland’s largest daily newspaper Helsingin Sanomat and the author of several books on Finnish and Latvian history. As a neutral, experienced and often critical observer, Rislakki is uniquely qualified for the task of separating truth from fiction. Contents Prologue Misinformation, disinformation? Questions and Answers 1. Are minorities, especially the Russians, discriminated against in Latvia? Is it very difficult for them to become citizens? Do they have political rights? 2. Are the Russians denied the right to use their language in Latvian society and in the schools? 3. Were the Baltic lands a small, underdeveloped province in a far corner of Europe, to which Germans, Swedes, Poles, and Russians brought religion, culture, and well-being and where no prerequisites for independence existed? 4. Did Latvia Reds help Lenin seize power in Russia? Did they help murder the Russian royal family? 5. Was Latvia granted independence as a present? Was the war of Independence an exaggerated myth? Was it a series of monor skirmishes that the Latvians were able to win with foreign help? 6. Why did the Latvians not resist the Soviet army’s taking over their country in 1940? Did the people carry out an anti-bourgeois, anti-fascist revolution, after which Latvia joined the legally, by means of elections? 7. Did Latvians murder their Jews in 1941? How anti-Semitic is and was Latvia? 8. Why did tens of thousands of Latvian volunteers fight in the SS troops, and why are SS veterans still allowed to march on the streets of Riga instead of being brought to justice? 9. Did the Soviet Union occupy Latvia? Were the Latvians victims of genocide? 10. Did the Latvians succumb to Soviet power, cooperate with the Communist authorities, and start their independence movement only after the Lithuanians and Estonians had begun theirs? 11. Has Lativia always belonged to Russia and benefited from it? Is it a strategically indispensable area for Russia? 12. Shouldn’t Latvia be grateful for factories, houses, schools, roads, and harbors built during the Soviet era? Shouldn’t she pay compensation as well? 13. Has Latvia been unwilling to establish good relations with neighboring Russia? Does Latvia champion an intransigent, hostile line toward Russia in the European Union, and did she decline a border agreement with Russia? Does she demand that Russia hand over some border areas to her? 14. Have the new leaders of Latvia privatized state property for their own use and are they guilty of massive corruption while the majority of the people live in poverty? Acknowledgements: How and Why This Book came to Be? Basic Facts about Latvia Notes Bibliography Index

The Baltic States and Weimar Ostpolitik

by John Hiden

The historical and geographical significance of the Baltic Sea as a Russian gateway to the West has sometimes overshadowed its reciprocal significance as a German window on the East, but in the period after the First World War the Baltic was to become of critical importance to a German state then shorn of much international authority. This study shows in detail how the Weimar Republic sought to develop its economic influence in the newly independent Baltic states, to ensure the retention of a vital ‘springboard’ into Russia after 1918. At one level this book therefore presents a fresh chapter in the chronicle of Weimar-Soviet relations. In addition, however, Germany’s highly successful trade policy involved competition with other Western powers, notably Britain, and necessarily had important implications for inter-war international politics: analysis of Polish and French diplomatic intentions in the region leads Dr Hiden to a wider evaluation of the whole relationship between trade and foreign policy in Weimar Ostpolitik.

Defender of Minorities: Paul Schiemann 1876-1944

by John Hidden

The Latvian-German politician and journalist Paul Schiemann was a passionate advocate of independence for the indigenous Baltic peoples. He unflinchingly resisted all forms of political extremism and wrote one of the earliest extended critical analysis of National Socialism. Schiemann vigorously opposed Nazi infiltration of the German minorities’ movement and through this the European Nationalities’ Congress. He also endured and commented bitingly on his experience of life under communist rule in the Baltic states. His memories, which he began to dictate to a young Jewish girl whom he was hiding, testify to his ideas on minority rights, extremism and Europe’s future. Hiden’s biography of this courageous man who battled against both Baltic and German nationalism opens up a little-explored chapter of Baltic history in a region today seen once more as the litmus test of the new Europe.

The Baltic Question during the Cold War (Cold War History)

by John Hidden, Vahur Made, David J. Smith

This edited volume presents a comprehensive analysis of the ‘Baltic question’, which arose within the context of the Cold War, and which has previously received little attention.

This volume brings together a group of international specialists on the international history of northern Europe. It combines country-based chapters with more thematic approaches, highlighting above all the political dimension of the Baltic question, locating it firmly in the context of international politics. It explores the policy decision-making mechanisms which sustained the Western non-recognition of Soviet sovereignty over the Baltic States after 1940 and which eventually led to the legal restoration of the three countries’ statehood in 1991. The wider international ramifications of this doctrine of legal continuity are also examined, within the context both of the Cold War and of relations between post-soviet Russia and the enlarging ‘Euro-Atlantic area’. The book ends with an examination of how this Cold War legacy continues to shape relations between Russia and the West.

The Baltic and the Outbreak of the Second World War

by John Hidden, Thomass Lane

This book is the first to highlight the importance of the Baltic region in the approach to war in 1939. Amid the welter of publications on the origins of the Second World War none has sought hitherto to focus on the Baltic region, where peace finally and irrevocably broke down. Central strategic and international issues of the interwar years are thus illuminated from a fresh perspective by a distinguished team of specialists that includes a number of native Baltic historians. The themes discussed by the contributors acquired renewed relevance, as the Baltic republics asserted their rejection of incorporation within the Soviet Union following the Nazi-Soviet pact of 1939. The Baltic and the outbreak of the Second World War makes an important contribution to the perennial debate on the immediate causes of the conflict, and should interest specialists in a variety of fields within international relations, modern European and diplomatic history.

The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939: The Baltic Case

by Izidors Vizulis
Product Description
This volume analyzes the effects of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939. This summer a 370-mile human “Freedom” chain denied the legitimacy of this Nazi-Soviet treaty. The politically expedient pact led to fifty years of Soviet occupation of the Baltic states. In the atmosphere of glasnost, Estonians, Latvians, and Lithuanians now demand restoration of their human and national rights. This volume details the historical causes of the Treaty, its contemporary consequences, and its present day challenge.

Walking Since Daybreak : A Story of Eastern Europe, World War II, and the Heart of Our Century

by Modris Eksteins Professor of History

For thousands of years, the windswept plains of the eastern Baltic attracted migrant tribes from all over Eurasia. These peoples lived together, sometimes uneasily, sometimes at peace, forging the multiethnic cultures of Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania. The last two centuries have brought one army after another to the Baltic, led by Napoleon, Kaiser Wilhelm, Tsar Nicholas, Hitler’s generals, and Stalin’s field marshals. In the wake of World War II, the multiethnic cultures of the Baltic splintered, and millions of citizens, including Canadian historian Modris Eksteins, born in Latvia in 1943, were sent into flight. Eksteins’s narrative, haunted by ghosts and unconventional in structure, embraces many stories. At one level, he offers a requiem for the Baltic past. At another, he composes a personal history of his family, driven so far from its homeland. At yet another, he ponders the nature of history itself in a tale that “must reflect the loss of authority, of history as ideal and of the author-historian as agent of that ideal. What we are left with is the intimacy not of truth but of experience.” The terrible experience of war and conflagration propels his beautifully rendered, eyes-wide-open narrative. During his childhood, Eksteins concludes, “for regret and tears there was no time, no point.” Half a century later, he is able to mourn the loss of the old Baltic world–and readers of contemporary history will find much to think about as he does.

Latvia in World War II

by Valdis Lumans

Valdis Lumans provides an authoritative, balanced, and comprehensive account of one of the most complex, and conflicted, arenas of the Second World War. Struggling against both Germany and the Soviet Union, Latvia emerged as an independent nation state after the First World War. In 1940, the Soviets occupied neutral Latvia, deporting or executing more than 30,000 Latvians before the Nazis invaded in 1941 and installed a puppet regime. The Red Army expelled the Germans in 1944 and reincorporated Latvia as a Soviet Republic. By the end of the war, an estimated 180,000 Latvians fled to the West. The Soviets would deport at least another 100,000.Drawing on a wide range of sourcesmany brought together here for the first timeLumans synthesizes political, military, social, economic, diplomatic, and cultural history. He moves carefully through traditional sources, many of them partisan, to scholarship emerging since the end of the Cold War, to confront such issues as political loyalties, military collaboration, resistance, capitulation, the Soviet occupation, anti-Semitism, and the Latvian role in the Holocaust.

Between Giants: The Battle for the Baltics in World War II

by Pritt Buttar

During World War II, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia found themselves trapped between the giants of the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. Over the course of the war these states were repeatedly occupied by different forces, and local government organizations and individuals were forced to choose between supporting the occupying forces or forming partisan units to resist their occupation. Devastated during the German invasion, these states then became the site of some of the most vicious fighting during the Soviet counter-attack and push towards Berlin. Many would be caught up in the bitter fighting in the region and, in particular, in the huge battles for the Courland Bridgehead during Operation Bagration, when hundreds of thousands of soldiers would fight and die in the last year of the war. By the end of the war, death and deportation had cost the Baltic States over 20 per cent of their total population and Soviet occupation was to see the iron curtain descend on the region for four decades. Using numerous first-hand accounts and detailed archival research, Prit Buttar weaves a magisterial account of the bitter fighting on the Eastern Front and the three small states whose fates were determined by the fortunes and misfortunes of war.

The Baltic States: Years of Dependence, 1940-1990

by Romuald Misiunas , Rein Taagepera

In this updated edition of their renowned The Baltic States, Romuald Misiunas and Rein Taagepera bring the story of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia up to the 1990s. The authors describe and analyze how the Baltic nations survived fifty years of social disruption, language discrimination, and Russian colonialism. The nations’ histories are fully integrated and compared, and some notable differences between them are pointed out.
With two new chapters, a revised preface, and an appendix on the end of Soviet domination, this expanded study covers a tumultuous period of political, economic, cultural, and ecological reform.

The Baltic revolution

Anatol Lieven

Concealed behind the Iron Curtain, and dominated by Soviet Russia for half a century, the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have now emerged to the attention of the world as free and independent nations. As the new republics fight for political and economic viability, Anatol Lieven, the only western journalist permanently based in the Baltic during the struggle for independence, presents an intimate and engaging portrait of their history and culture, from their ancient origins to the present day. He explores the characteristics and personalities of the Baltic peoples, their religious and national differences, their relations with Russia and with the West, and their prospects for the future. The book opens with two highly entertaining chapters on the early history of the Baltic peoples, their conquest by the Christians, the evolution of the Lithuanian empire, the union with Poland, and the experience of the Baltic provinces under the Russian Empire. It then looks at the countries’ first struggle for independence in 1918, the failure of democracy and the establishment of authoritarian regimes, and the Soviet annexation of the Baltic in 1940. Lieven draws a revealing portrait of the class structure of the Baltic states and the ethnic tensions that existed between the Germans, Jews, Poles and Russians who have lived there. Drawing on a wide range of sources in several languages, including interviews, newspaper accounts and his own observation, he describes and analyses the reawakening of cultural self-awareness during the late 1980s. The final section of the book examines the tumultuous years of nationalist struggle (1987-92), the constitutions of the new republics, and theresults of their first free elections – in autumn 1992. Lieven comments provocatively on the fragile new order, the demolition of the Soviet economies, and the possibilities for democracy and Westernization, or for ethnic conflict and nationalist dictatorship.

Latvia: State and Society (Postcommunist States and Nations)

By Artis Pabriks

The past one hundred years have been a very trying time for Latvia, complete with success, tragedy, and still unrealized promise. Within the course of a generation, the country experienced revolutions, wars and independent statehood, and then the slide into authoritarianism. World War II brought new occupations. The tragedies were staggering: holocaust, executions, and an exodus of refugees. Soviet consolidation bred deportations, forced collectivization and partisan warfare. Almost fifty years later, Latvia regained its independence and emerged from decades of disastrous Soviet rule.
This book comprehensively surveys Latvia’s recent past and prospects for the new millennium, placing contemporary events in historical perspective. The authors address the evolution of the country from the movement against Soviet rule to the dilemmas of contemporary politics: party formation, the problem of corruption, the quest for the future and a regional and international role, the struggle to develop a civil society, the issue of ethnic relations and the recurring tendency towards statist solutions. Proper attention is also given to economic developments.

The Baltic Nations and Europe: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in the Twentieth Century

by John Hiden

, Patrick Salmon

Of all the Soviet Union’s subject nationalities, the three Baltic republics, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, were the most determined and best organised in seizing the opportunities created by glasnost and perestroika to win freedom from Moscow’s grip. At the time of first publication, in 1991, the final section of the book was speculative. Now for this revised edition, the authors have provided a new final chapter which brings the story up to date — and the three republics to political independence again.

The Holocaust in Latvia, 1941-1944 : The Missing Center

Review
Ezergailis’s history of the Latvian Holocaust is definitive study and a major contribution. G.M. Kren. — Choice. January 1997.

About the Author
Professor of History, Ithaca College. Author of some 400 publications and six books.

The main source about the Holocaust in Latvia.

Chief Culprit: Stalin’s Grand Design to Start World War II

Bestselling author Victor Suvorov probes newly released Soviet documents and reevaluates existing material to analyze Stalin’s strategic design to conquer Europe and the reasons behind his controversial support for Nazi Germany. A former Soviet army intelligence officer, the author explains that Stalin’s strategy leading up to World War II grew from Vladimir Lenin’s belief that if World War I did not ignite the worldwide Communist revolution, then a second world war would be needed to achieve it. Stalin saw Nazi Germany as the power that would fight and weaken capitalist countries so that Soviet armies could then sweep across Europe. Suvorov reveals how Stalin conspired with German leaders to bypass the Versailles Treaty, which forbade German rearmament, and secretly trained German engineers and officers and provided bases and factories for war. He also calls attention to the 1939 nonaggression pact between the Soviet Union and Germany that allowed Hitler to proceed with his plans to invade Poland, fomenting war in Europe.

Suvorov debunks the theory that Stalin was duped by Hitler and that the Soviet Union was a victim of Nazi aggression. Instead, he makes the case that Stalin neither feared Hitler nor mistakenly trusted him. Suvorov maintains that after Germany occupied Poland, defeated France, and started to prepare for an invasion of Great Britain, Hitler’s intelligence services detected the Soviet Union’s preparations for a major war against Germany. This detection, he argues, led to Germany’s preemptive war plan and the launch of an invasion of the USSR. Stalin emerges from the pages of this book as a diabolical genius consumed by visions of a worldwide Communist revolution at any cost–a leader who wooed Hitler and Germany in his own effort to conquer the world. In contradicting traditional theories about Soviet planning, the book is certain to provoke debate among historians throughout the world.

Stalin’s War of Extermination, 1941-1945: Planning, Realization and Documentation

Joachim Hoffmann

The breakthrough bestseller by a German academic (and longtime researcher with the German military archives) that documented Stalin’s murderous war against the German army and the German people to today’s German public. Based on the late Joachim Hoffmann’s lifelong study of German and Russian military records, Stalin’s War of Extermination not only reveals—as never before—the Red Army’s grisly record of atrocities against soldiers and civilians, but establishes beyond cavil that torture, murder, and rape of the captive and the helpless was official Soviet policy, as ordered by Comrade J.V. Stalin. An indispensable book for all students of World War II as it actually happened, as well as a revisionist classic that has shaken anti-German propagandists to the marrow.

Europe at War 1939-1945: No Simple Victory

Norman Davies

The conventional narrative of the Second World War is well known: after six years of brutal fighting on land, sea and in the air, the Allied Powers prevailed and the Nazi regime was defeated. But as in so many things, the truth is somewhat different. Bringing a fresh eye to bear on a story we think we know, Norman Davies forces us to look again at those six years and to discard the usual narrative of Allied good versus Nazi evil, reminding us that the war in Europe was dominated by two evil monsters – Hitler and Stalin – whose fight for supremacy consumed the best people in Germany and in the USSR. The outcome of the war was at best ambiguous, the victory of the West was only partial, its moral reputation severely tarnished and, for the greater part of the continent of Europe, ‘liberation’ was only the beginning of more than fifty years of totalitarian oppression. ‘Davies writes with real knowledge and passion.’ – Michael Burleigh, “Evening Standard”. ‘Punchy and compelling’ – Noel Malcolm, “Sunday Telegraph”.

Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania
By Inc. (COR) Dorling Kindersley

Eastern Europe continues to grow in popularity for western travelers. Places like the Czech Republic and its capitol city, Prague, have long been desirable destinations. Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania each boast their own picturesque capitols (Tallin, Riga and Vilnius) that are brimming with old-world architecture, magnificently preserved cathedrals, quaint shops and cafA(c)s. Each of the three countries are part of the European Union which has made traveling to them easier than ever before.

Deception: Spies, Lies and How Russia Dupes the West

By Edward Lucas

From the capture of Sidney Reilly, the ‘Ace of Spies’, by Lenin’s Bolsheviks in 1925, to the deportation from the USA of Anna Chapman, the ‘Redhead under the Bed’, in 2010, Kremlin and Western spymasters have battled for supremacy for nearly a century. In Deception Edward Lucas uncovers the real story of Chapman and her colleagues in Britain and America, unveiling their clandestine missions and the spy-hunt that led to their downfall. It reveals unknown triumphs and disasters of Western intelligence in the Cold War, providing the background to the new world of industrial and political espionage. To tell the story of post-Soviet espionage, Lucas draws on exclusive interviews with Russia’s top NATO spy, Herman Simm, and unveils the horrific treatment of a Moscow lawyer who dared to challenge the ruling criminal syndicate there. Once the threat from Moscow was international communism; now it comes from the siloviki, Russia’s ruthless ‘men of power’.

Bibliography in German

“Die Balten”  

Hinter der Bezeichnung Balten verstecken sich eine ganze Reihe heute fast vergessener Völker, die Litauer, Letten, Pruszen, Kuren, Semgatten und Selen, die am <Mare Balticum> gesiedelt hatten. Die Autorin versucht die Urgeschichte dieser ursprünglichen Balten in das Bewusstsein zu heben und geht dabei von Sprache, Flussnamen und den Funden der Spatenforschung aus.

by Marija Gimbutas

Die Geschichte Des Deutschen Ordens

Klaus Militzer

Nach der Gründung in Palästina vor Akkon 1192 und der Erhebung zum Ritterorden 1198 breitete sich der Deutsche Orden rasch aus, erwarb Ländereien, Burgen und Herrschaften im Heiligen Land, in den Reichen am Mittelmeer, in Deutschland und vor allem in Preußen und Livland. In den baltischen Ländern baute er viel beachtete Herrschaften auf. Nachdem der Orden seine Legitimation seit dem Ende des 14. Jahrhunderts eingebüßt hatte, verlor er allmählich seine Herrschaften im Baltikum und wurde im Zuge der Reformation auf das Deutsche Reich beschränkt. Nach dem Ersten Weltkrieg wandelte er sich in einen Priesterorden um, als der er mit Zweigen der Schwestern und Marianer noch heute besteht.
Der Autor schildert fachkundig und lebendig die Geschichte des Deutschen Ordens von der Gründung bis zur Gegenwart. Er stellt dar, wie der Orden sich mit internen Kämpfen wie mit von außen herangetragenen Herausforderungen auseinander setzen musste und wie er auf die vielfältigen Situationen reagierte.

The Book includes a handful description about Livonian Order.

Wolter von Plettenberg und das mittelalterliche Livland

Ilgvars Misans

Der Ordensmeister Wolter von Plettenberg, eine der herausragendsten Persönlichkeiten in der Geschichte des mittelalterlichen Livland, ist schon seit mehr als einem Jahrhundert ein Forschungsgegenstand der Geschichtsschreiber. Jede neue Historikergeneration ist bemüht, sein Leben und seine Aktivitäten sowie seine Bedeutung für Livland neu zu bewerten und einzuordnen. Als jüngster Versuch auf diesem Gebiet liegt der von Norbert Angermann und Ilgvars Misāns herausgegebene Sammelband vor. Er beginnt mit einem Gesamtbild Plettenbergs von Teodors Zeids (†), dem Altmeister der lettischen Mediävistik, der sich zum Ziel gesetzt hat, Plettenbergs Rolle in der lettischen Geschichte zu bestimmen. Aus der Sicht der Letten kann diese Zeit wohl kaum als günstig oder positiv angesehen werden, denn eben damals begann die konsequente, rücksichtslose Einführung der Schollenpflichtigkeit bei den einheimischen Bauern.

In der früheren Geschichtsschreibung hat man wiederholt die Frage aufgeworfen, warum Plettenberg die größte Herausforderung seiner Regierungszeit, die sich ihm mit der Reformation stellte, anders als Hochmeister Albrecht nicht annahm, der den preußischen Ordensstaat säkularisierte. Auf Plettenbergs Haltung gegenüber der Reformation geht jetzt Joachim Kuhles ein, der in seinem Beitrag feststellt, dass es nicht nur persönliche Eigenschaften von Plettenberg, sondern vielmehr gewichtige objektive Ursachen waren, die der Umgestaltung der livländischen Konföderation in ein zentralistisch regiertes Staatsgebilde im Wege standen. Der Verfasser weist zugleich darauf hin, dass eben die von Plettenberg betriebene Politik, die offen für Kompromisse war, am besten den inneren Frieden und die Unabhängigkeit des Landes sicherte.

Riga und der Ostseeraum: Von der Gründung 1201 bis in die Frühe Neuzeit

Ilgvars Misans, Horst Wernicke

Der vorliegende Band gibt Beiträge wieder, die auf einer internationalen wissenschaftlichen Tagung anläßlich des Jubiläums 800 Jahre Gründung der Stadt Riga im September 2001 in Riga stattgefunden hat. Sie umfassen den Zeitraum vom Hochmittelalter bis 1800 und berühren thematisch viele Bereiche der historischen Forschung. Schwerpunkte sind die Rahmenbedingungen der Stadtgründung Rigas, die Hansezeit Rigas vom 13. bis zum 16. Jh. sowie die Schwedenzeit der Stadt und im Baltikum. Der Band hat also einen mittelalterlichen und einen frühneuzeitlichen Teil. Der Zeit des Hochmittelalters, die thematisch zum einen die Beziehungen Skandinaviens zum Düna-Mündungsraum, die Seehandelsplätze im Ostseeraum sowie die frühstädtische Entwicklung in Lettland betrifft, folgen Beiträge zur Herausbildung der Städte im Übergang vom Hoch- zum Spätmittelalter im Ostseeraum. Die wirtschaftliche Entwicklung Rigas und seine Beziehungen im Ostseeraum werden mit Beiträgen zum Handwerk nach archäologischen Quellen und zum Handel berührt. Das Mittelalter endet dann mit Beiträgen zu den sozialen Verhältnissen in Riga und zu den Beziehungen zwischen Riga und Dänemark. Die Schwedenzeit ist mit den Beiträgen zur Kirchen- und Städtepolitik im Baltikum, zum Städtebau, zum Handel und zur Handelspolitik und zur schwedischen Herrschaft im Baltikum vertreten, während Rigas Bedeutung für Livland mehrfach thematisiert wird. Beiträge zum rigischen Wappen, zur literarischen Kultur, zum rigischen Stadtbild in frühen Drucken und zu den frühneuzeitlichen Glocken in Lettland erweitern das Spektrum der behandelten Themen. Der Band bietet mit seinen Beiträgen einen Einblick in die rigische Geschichte von der Gründung bis zum Jahr 1800. Die Beiträge greifen aber weit über den stadtgeschichtlichen Horizont hinaus und beziehen die baltische wie die Ostseeraumperspektive mit ein.

Das Herzogtum Kurland 1561-1795. Verfassung, Wirtschaft, Gesellschaft

Oberländer, Erwin; Misāns, Ilgvars

Die baltischen Lander: Estland, Lettland, Litauen vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart (Ost- und Sudosteuropa)

by Michael Garleff

Seit die baltischen Staaten 1991 ihre Selbstständigkeit wiedererlangten, glaubte man sie auf dem Weg „zurück nach Europa“ – in Unkenntnis der Tatsache, dass sie stets zu Europa gehört haben: Denn stärker als die so genannten Ostblockstaaten unterlagen sie nach der Annexion durch die Sowjetunion 1940/45 der hermetischen Abriegelung gegenüber dem Westen. Selbst in diesem halben Jahrhundert aber erhielten sich Esten, Letten und Litauer ihre Identität und das Bewusstsein einer wechselvollen Vergangenheit. Deren Kenntnis bildet eine Voraussetzung für das Verständnis ihrer heutigen Situation einschließlich der innen- und außenpolitischen Probleme. Dieses Buch bietet erstmals einen allgemein verständlichen Gesamtüberblick über die Entwicklung der baltischen Staaten vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart. Neben der politischen und gesellschaftlichen Geschichte werden auch die Hauptströmungen in Literatur, Kunst und Bildungswesen vergleichend dargestellt – ergänzt durch Abbildungen, Kurzbiografien und Hinweise auf sehenswerte historische Stätten.

Deutsche Geschichte im Osten Europas: Baltische Länder

von Gert von Pistohlkors

Der baltische Landstrich im Nordosten Europas, bewohnt von Esten und Letten, die sich auf Ureinwohner zurückführen, die mehr als 5000 Jahre im Lande ansässig waren, gehört seit jeher zu den Wetterwinkeln Europas, die in besonderem Masse von ihren Nachbarn bestimmt worden sind.
Bis 1561 war der Deutsche Ritterorden die Schutzmacht der Missionare, Vasallen, Fernhändler und Handwerker, die zumeist aus Westfalen und Niedersachsen einwanderten und für die das Marienland Livland zum ¿Blivland¿ wurde. Eine bäuerliche Einwanderung blieb aus; die autochthonen Landbewohner wurden vielmehr nach deutschem Recht von Vasallen, die sich zu Ritterschaften zusammenschlossen, regiert und in die Hörigkeit und Leibeigenschaft gedrängt.
Russen, Dänen, Schweden und Polen rangen dann um die Vorherrschaft, bis Peter der Grosse im Nordischen Krieg mit dem Sieg über Schweden den Zugang zur Ostsee militärisch sicherstellte und 1710 politisch und durch Vertag mit Riga und Reval sowie mit den Ritterschaften die Zugehörigkeit der Ostseeprovinzen zum Russischen Reich erreichte, die mehr als 200 Jahre währen sollte.
In diesem Band wird nachgezeichnet, wie aus Privilegierten allmählich Vertreter einer deutschen Oberschicht und schliesslich in einem langen Übergang und nach dem Umbruch des Ersten Weltkrieges Angehörige einer ethnischen Minderheit wurden, die in den neugegründeten Republiken Estland und Lettland nur mehr 1,5 beziehungsweise 3,2 Prozent der Gesamtbevölkerung ausmachten. Vor die Wahl gestellt, ob sie 1939 nach dem Hitler- Stalin- Pakt und nach dem Krieg gegen Polen Untertanen des einen oder des anderen Diktators sein wollten, begaben sich 95 Prozent der Deutschbalten in den Hoheitsbereich des Deutschen Reiches – wohl wissend, dass die Esten und Letten sie nicht verdrängt hatten und dass ihre mehr als 750 jährige Geschichte unwiderruflich an ihr Ende gekommen war.

An large edition regarding German history in Baltic region.

Judenmord in Lettland

von Bernhard Press

“Die Beschreibungen gewinnen dort am meisten an Plastizität, wo individuelle Schicksale zur Sprache kommen, die in ihrer Dramatik eine ganze Epoche zum Leben erwecken können.”(Jahrbücher für Geschichte Osteuropas)Reihe Dokumente – Texte – Materialien Zentrum für Antisemitismusforschung, Bd. 4

Lettland im Zweiten Weltkrieg
Zwischen sowjetischen und deutschen Besatzern 1940-1946.

Björn M. Felder

1940 erzwang die Rote Armee im Gefolge des Hitler-Stalin-Pakts den Anschluss Lettlands an die UdSSR. Im Juni 1941 marschierte die Wehrmacht ein und integrierte das Land in das »Reichskommissariat Ostland«. Ein Großteil der jüdischen Bevölkerung wurde ermordet. 1944 kehrte die Rote Armee zurück. Zehntausende von Letten wurden nach Sibirien verschleppt. Von 1940 1946 verlor Lettland ein Drittel seiner Bevölkerung durch Deportation, physische Vernichtung oder Flucht.Björn M. Felder zeigt anhand bisher unbekannter Quellen die verheerenden Auswirkungen der sowjetischen und der nationalsozialistischen Gewaltherrschaft auf die lettische Bevölkerung. Er zeigt, wie sowjetische und nationalsozialistische Besatzungspraktiken wirkten, und wie die Letten und ihre politischen Eliten versuchten, ihre Interessen gegen die zunehmend als solche wahrgenommene deutsche »Kolonialherrschaft« bzw. gegen die russische »Fremdherrschaft« zu behaupten. In großer Klarheit werden so am lettischen Beispiel diedramatische Lage dermittelosteuropäischen Nationen zwischen Hitler und Stalin und ihr Bemühen um Unabhängigkeit deutlich.Das Buch wurde 2007 mit dem renommierten Fraenkel-Preis des Institute of Contemporary History and Wiener Library, London, ausgezeichnet.

New fresh year 2009.  publication regarding aspects on World War II in Latvia from German point of view.

Geschichtswissenschaft in Lettland nach 1990. Zwischen Tradition und Neuorientierung”, in: Klio ohne Fesseln? Historiographie im östlichen Europa nach dem Zusammenbruch des Kommunismus

Misāns, Ilgvars

Cf. e.c.: Hirschhausen, Ulrike von, “Die Nationalisierung der Geschichte und ihre Grenzen: Vier Thesen zur postkommunistischen Historiographie Lettlands 1991-2001″,

Bibliography in French

Dictionnaire historique de la Lettonie

de Suzanne Champonnois , François de Labriolle

La Lettonie est un Etat récent – méconnu et souvent confondu avec ses autres voisins ” baltes “, la Lituanie et l’Estonie -, né en 1918 des luttes sanglantes qui ont marqué dans les pays baltiques la fin de la Première Guerre mondiale et la guerre civile qui a suivi. Mais l’histoire des provinces qui composent cet Etat est longue et diverse, elle a été occultée par les nombreuses occupations, germanique, polonaise, suédoise, russe et soviétique. Ces pays étaient attirés par la richesse de ces terres biens situées sur la mer Baltique et par la belle voie de pénétration qu’offrait la Daugava. Les chevaliers Teutoniques ont conquis tout le pays afin de convertir ” les derniers païens d’Europe “, mais le destin de la Livonie au nord du fleuve, celui de la Courlande au sud et celui de la Latgale à lest ont été très différents. La Courlande a constitué pendant deux siècles et demi un duché presque indépendant qui a connu une grande expansion commerciale et qui s’est acquis un (modeste) empire colonial. La Livonie, enrichie par la Hanse et le développement de Riga a souffert des ambitions de ses voisins. La Latgale est restée longtemps à part tant sous la domination polonaise que sous l’autorité russe. Ces provinces ont fondé leur rassemblement en 1918 sur la volonté de vivre ensemble et sur leur langue commune. Longtemps peuple de paysans, sans noblesse, ni aristocratie, ni chefs politiques reconnus avant la Première Guerre mondiale, les Lettons ont trouvé en eux-mêmes le courage de créer un Etat qui ne connut que vingt ans d’indépendance (1920-1940) avant de tomber pour un demi-siècle sous le pouvoir soviétique. Ils n’en sont sortis que grâce à la décomposition intérieure de l’URSS et vont maintenant adhérer à l’Union européenne. Ce sont les faits marquants de l’histoire de ce peuple ainsi que les acteurs qui ont fait cette histoire que présente ce dictionnaire

Pays baltes : Estonie, Lettonie et Lituanie

de Nicola Williams (Auteur), Becca Blond (Auteur), Regis St Louis (Auteur)

Les ruelles médiévales de Tallinn, les édifices Art nouveau de Riga et le centre baroque de Vilnius, mais aussi les îles estoniennes, le ” Sahara lituanien ” ou la côte lettone,.. Partez sur les chemins méconnus de la nouvelle Europe.

Bibliography in Russian

Россия и Балтия. Остзейские губернии и Северо-Западный край в политике реформ Российской империи. Вторая половина XVIII – XX вв.

Институт всеобщей истории РАН,

Авторы статей сборника изучают историю западных окраин Российской империи во второй половине XVIII – XX в. в контексте проводимых в государстве политических и экономических преобразований. В ряде статей анализируется зарубежная литература по истории стран Балтии с XVI в. до настоящего времени.

Edition by Russian Academics regarding Tsarist Russia politics in Baltic states.

Монеты прибалтики XIII – XVIII столетий

Автор: Д. Федоров

Систематизированный в хронологическом порядке определитель монет, чеканенных в XIII—XVIII веках на территории Эстонии и Латвии. Описание, разновидности, метрологические характеристики, изображения. Знаки и символы, встречающиеся на монетах. Много справочного материала.

Прибалтика и Кремль. 1940-1953

Зубкова Елена

Эта книга о том, как Латвия, Литва и Эстония стали “Советской Прибалтикой” о механизмах принятия решений по советизации балтийских республик и о людях, которые стояли за этими решениями. Когда у Сталина возник замысел проекта советизации Прибалтики. Как менялись методы инкорпорации Прибалтики в советскую систему. Как складывались отношения между Кремлем, представителями балтийских элит и населением. Ответы на эти и многие другие вопросы дают новые документы из федеральных архивов России, на которых основано это исследование. Книга рассчитана на широкий круг читателей.

A new conceptual view on Baltic-Stalinist Moscow politics by ”progressive’ Russian historian Elena Zubkova.

Прибалтика. Война без правил (1939-1945)

В книге советника директора Государственного Эрмитажа, профессора кафедры всеобщей истории РГПУ им. А.И.Герцена, доктора исторических наук Юлии Кантор “Прибалтика. Война без правил (1939-1945)” использованы уникальные, ранее не публиковавшиеся документы из Архива внешней политики России, Российского государственного архива военно-морского флота, Центрального архива ФСБ России, Латвийского государственного исторического архива, Особого архива Литвы, Архива Центра литовской эмиграции Каунасского университета, Эстонского государственного архива.

Упущенный шанс Сталина. Схватка за Европу. 1939-1941 гг.

Михаил Мельтюхов

Книга посвящена одной из самых загадочных страниц отечественной истории XX века – событиям, приведшим к трагедии 1941 года. В последние десятилетия предыстория Великой Отечественной войны оказалась в центре ожесточенной и чрезмерно политизированной дискуссии. Если одни авторы продолжают обвинять тогдашнее советское руководство в недостаточной подготовке к войне, то другие, с легкой руки В.Суворова, наоборот, – в подготовке нападения на Германию. В данной работе на широком круге документов, в том числе малоизвестных и лишь недавно рассекреченных, подробно исследуются события 1939-1941 годов. Показаны внешняя политика СССР и действия Красной Армии в Восточной Европе в начале Второй мировой войны, военное планирование советского Генштаба, организационное развитие и численность советских вооруженных сил, взгляды советского руководства на события европейской войны и содержание советской пропаганды. Подобное комплексное исследование позволяет подвести определенный итог ведущимся спорам и дать ответы на следующие вопросы: виновен ли СССР в возникновении Второй мировой войны; почему Москва пошла на подписание Пакта о ненападении; что знали в Кремле о германском плане “Барбаросса”; было ли германское нападение на СССР превентивной войной, и многие другие.

Эта книга адресована не только специалистам, но и широкому кругу любителей вдумчивого чтения, интересующихся историей своей страны.

One of the main preventive war theory sources by Russian writer M. Meltuhov. He asserts that Stalin had chance to attack Hitler first and save Soviet Union from calamities of German aggression in 1941. Book also includes sources about Soviet military operations in Baltic states in 1939.-1940.

Ледокол

Виктора Суворов

`Ледокол` Виктора Суворова, по оценке лондонской газеты `Таймс`, – самое оригинальное произведение современной истории. Книга переведена на 27 языков, выдержала более 100 изданий. В ней автор предлагает свою версию начала Второй мировой войны.

Primary source from ex-soviet spy Viktor Suvorov (Vladimir Rezun) who is one of the main pushers of preventive war theory. In this book he claims that Soviet Union planned attack on Germany right from the beginig,  but were outfetched by Germans in 1941. He claims that Stalin was only one month late to start massive full scale attack on Germany. Book is translated in various languages see Viktor_Suvorov There is nummerous contra publications mainly from Russia based historians wich are too many to list.

Кузькина мать. Хроника великого десятилетия

Новая книга выдающегося историка, писателя и военного аналитика Виктора Суворова, написанная в лучших традициях бестселлеров “Ледокол” и “Аквариум”, грандиозная историческая реконструкция событий конца 1950-х – первой половины 1960-х годов, когда в результате противостояния двух сверхдержав, СССР и США, человечество оказалось на грани Третьей мировой войны, на волоске от гибели в глобальной ядерной катастрофе. Новая сенсационная версия нашей политической и военной истории, разрушающая привычные представления и мифы о движущих силах и причинах ключевых событий середины ХХ века.
Складывая известные и малоизвестные факты и события тех лет в единую мозаику, автор рассказывает об истинных причинах Берлинского и Карибского кризисов, о которых умалчивают официальная пропаганда, политики и историки в России и за рубежом. Эти события стали кульминацией второй половины XX столетия, поворотным пунктом и предопределили историческую судьбу Советского Союза и коммунистической идеологии, последующий развал СССР и триумф капиталистических экономик и свободного рынка.
Это книга о том, как руководство СССР во главе с Никитой Хрущевым, стремясь сохранить “дело Ленина”, пыталось добиться того, что задумал, но не смог достичь Сталин в ходе Второй мировой войны – раздуть пожар Мировой революции и под прикрытием коммунистической идеологии добиться мирового господства.
Это книга о политических интригах и борьбе за власть, о противостоянии двух сверхдержав и их спецслужб, о тайных разведывательных операциях и о людях, толкавших человечество к гибели и спасавших его.
Книга содержит более 150 фотографий, в том числе уникальные архивные снимки, публикующиеся в России впервые.

Мифическая война. Миражи Второй Мировой

Борис Соколов

“НЕИЗВЕСТНАЯ ВОЙНА” – так назвали в американском прокате знаменитый документальный телесериал Романа Кармена о Второй Мировой, снятый на излете советской эпохи. Но даже сегодня, через 65 лет после Победы, Великая Отечественная остается во многом неизвестной войной, история которой насквозь мифологизирована, – мы судим о ней не столько по документам и фактам, сколько по пропагандистским легендам и идеологическим штампам, унаследованным от СССР. Патриотические мифы есть у каждого народа, во время войны они совершенно необходимы, вера в них укрепляет моральный дух армии. Но через две трети века после катастрофы настало время не верить, а знать – хотя бы для того, чтобы не допустить ее повторения.
Эта книга – настоящее “покушение на миражи”. Это сенсационное расследование опровергает самые расхожие и застарелые мифы о Второй Мировой, восстанавливая подлинную историю величайшей трагедии XX столетия во всем ее ужасе и величии.

23 июня – “день М”

Марк Солонин

Сенсационное расследование трагических событий 1941 года. Всесторонне проанализировав историю подготовки Советского Союза к Большой войне и предвоенного стратегического планирования, автор приходит к ошеломляющему выводу – в июне 1941 года Гитлер, сам того не ожидая, опередил удар Сталина ровно на один день

22 июня 1941. Анатомия катастрофы

Марк Солонин

Книга Марка Солонина “22 июня, или Когда началась Великая Отечественная война?” давно стала историческим бестселлером, выдержав десятки переизданий и разойдясь рекордными тиражами. Но с момента ее первой публикации прошло больше пяти лет, за эти годы стала доступна новая информация по истории Второй мировой войны. Поэтому автор вернулся к работе над книгой и фактически переписал ее заново.

Июнь 41-го. Окончательный диагноз

Подлинные масштабы военной катастрофы 1941 года скрываются до сих пор – пытаясь найти хоть какие-то оправдания сокрушительному разгрому Красной Армии, исторический официоз замалчивает тот факт, что соотношение советских и немецких потерь в Приграничном сражении достигало невероятной цифры 1:35 (35 наших бойцов за одного выбывшего из строя гитлеровца)! “Это есть “чудо”, не укладывающееся ни в какие каноны военной науки. Такое соотношение потерь возможно разве что в том случае, когда белые колонизаторы, приплывшие в Африку с пушками и ружьями, наступают на аборигенов, вооруженных копьями и мотыгами. Но летом 1941 г. на западных границах СССР была совсем другая ситуация: обороняющаяся сторона в целом не уступала противнику ни в численности, ни в вооружении, количественно превосходила его в средствах нанесения мощного контрудара – танках и авиации, да еще и имела возможность построить свою оборону на системе естественных преград и долговременных оборонительных сооружений…”
Уникальное по масштабу и глубине исследование ведущего военного историка дает исчерпывающий ответ на вопрос: К какой войне готовился Сталин, и почему реальная война началась с катастрофического поражения Красной Армии. Использовав десятки тысяч страниц первичных документов, хранящихся в российских и германских архивах, и предоставив 37 оригинальных карт-схем, иллюстрирующих описание боевых действий первых дней войны, Марк Солонин ставит окончательный диагноз сталинскому режиму, за который в 1941 году не желала воевать даже собственная армия. Это именно та книга, которую десятки лет ждали все, кто хочет глубоко и непредвзято изучить историю величайшей трагедии нашего народа.

Марк Солонин

«Уничтожение евреев в Латвии. 1941-1945. Цикл лекций»

В феврале 2009 года закончен проект «Уничтожение евреев в Латвии. 1941-1945. Цикл лекций» под общей редакцией раввина Менахема Баркагана. Книга выпущена на шести языках: русском, латышском, английском, немецком, французском, иврите. Проект поддержали Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) of the European Union, открытый общественный фонд «Еврейское наследие Лиепаи» и частные лица.

The selection of lectures about Holocaust in Latvia by Latvian Jewish historians. Also in English, German, French and Hebrew.

“Extermination of Jews in Latvia. 1941-1945. Series of lectures”

Web sources

http://www.li.lv/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=95&Itemid=173

http://www.latvia-usa.org/hisoflatbrie.html

http://www.sovietstory.com/

http://www.rumbula.org/history_of_latvian_jewry.shtml

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/332156/history-of-Latvia

http://www.latvians.com/en/index.php

http://www.latlat.sitecity.ru/ltext_0910113122.phtml

And watch this funny satirical cartoon about Latvian history made by Latvians themselves.

6 responses to “The selected bibliography about Latvian history.

  1. What do you think of Leto Lapsa’s (et al.) book “Musu vesture”? Is it a good rendition of many not-usually-talked about aspects of Latvian history?

    • gold88

      Bearing the fact that there are no definite history books about the history of the last twenty years of independence, expect the 1987-1991 period its a handy source. But, its not so much as history book as its written by sensationalist type journalists. Lato Lapsa has a large bibliography of books about major politicians and security services. He can be compared to Julian Assange as he also had leaked many sensitive documents and been majorly critical about Latvian politics. Nevertheless, these three volumes serve as good insight in various aspects from foreign to interior. I myself have used in academic writings, for the book holds many interesting facts that are not mentioned in history books. So its a good source of facts, that are not always mentioned or forgotten. But, be careful about interpretations and remember its written by journalists whose thoughts are often dubious. If you know site pietiek.com you will be familiar with the working style of Lapsa and his team. Some things to agree, some to disagree, entirely up to reader.

  2. Thanks! I’m really interested in the recent history of Latvia as a case study in how the fall of the Sovient Union actually happened, but I would like to understand it in a more scientific, non-patriotic way; and most sources I’ve found either take a very patriotic stance, or then (the Russian language ones) do the exact opposite. It seems that those years are often treated as propaganda for one side or the other, and not so often as something to be understood.

    I know pietiek.com, which made me think of Lapsa as an “angry” person. (I think that guy who used to work for tv5, Andrejs Mamikins, once had him in his old programme “Bez Censury”, and the impression he evoked in me was mostly that of a guerrilla warrior.) If, however, he does mention facts that other books don’t, then I can try to understand the transition period a bit more from his book. (I did notice, in the blurb I read, that he was quite sensationalist — “we say things here that the main players don’t want you to know”, “we talk about what others would like to forget”, etc.). Which means it may be worthwhile to buy the book.

    Good collection of sources you have here, by the way. There are several books I didn’t know and that I probably should buy. I’m very glad I found your site — I will spend quite a while reading your posts. Thanks for writing them!

  3. And if I may ask another opinion — what about Igors Vārpa’s “Atmodas eiforija un atmošanās paģiras”? From the blurbs I’ve found, it looks like a sincere take on the events of those days, with both the good and the bad sides. What do you think?

    • gold88

      I cannot really comment about this Igors Vārpa book and his other books. For, not just because he is an amateur historian, but because his books is too huge and the quality of their content does not justify their size. He has written three such “bricks” about Latvian soldiers in Latvian, Russian and German army. I have read only about the Waffen SS Legion, and I can say it was a huge compilation from other more respected sources, together with his interpretation of events. His book about the Restoration of Independence may contain interesting interpretations, because as many other publicists of his age he has a “mind of his own”, meaning his views towards history and present are rather opposingly diffirent towards views of others. As I understand from reviews in the press about his latest book, he belongs to those who did not gain what they wanted for restoration of independence and therefore are widely critical of those times and outcome. Such people are many among Latvian society and their voice is needed to be heard. We are rather lacking academic accounts about the restoration period, because most historians personally witnessed these events and had some personal part in it. From my study experience I see that people from my generation who were born during those times could be those who can write non-personally affected historic accounts about the restoration period. I myself have many posts about this period, but I am not practicing in this period. The books about the restoration period is quite many, some written by leading figures and some like Vārpa. So I suggest to compare his book with another book about this period. One of the most recommended source is multi author book “Latvijas Valsts Atjaunošana” published on 1998. The authors like Egils Levits, Tālavs Jundzis ofc all were directly involved, but that source is a good guidline for 1986-1991 period.

  4. Thanks for the suggestion! I’ll look for that book.

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