The Unit for History of Slavonia, Syrmia and Baranya was founded with the main objective of advancing and enriching knowledge about the past of the three historical regions in the territory of northeastern Croatia by using contemporary methods of historical study and scholarly research. Complementing its main objective, the Unit conducts research into the history of the surrounding areas in Hungary, Serbia (Vojvodina) and Bosnia and Herzegovina, particularly inasmuch as it is intertwined with Croatian history.
The main area which in the focus of the research interest of the Unit’s historians, in terms of geography, includes the area of Slavonia as understood in modern times, Syrmia in its entirety, and the Croatian part of Baranya. A more extensive context of national history is inevitably taken into consideration as well as the history of surrounding nations and countries to which these provinces have always been connected or with which they maintained important contacts. Historical events and relations within the territory that we are focusing on cannot be understood or interpreted without a comprehensive regional and international purview
Researchers of the Unit endeavour to give balanced coverage to all strata of the complex historical realities, i.e. the political, economic, social, cultural, demographic, religious/ecclesiastical, military, and intellectual history. Likewise they try to pay equal attention to all the great historical eras, from antiquity through the Middle Ages and the Ottoman period up to modern and recent times.
Historical research inevitably impinges upon fields of other humanistic studies and social sciences: philology, literary history, art history, archaeology, archival science, philosophy, ethnology, demography, economy, political science, jurisprudence, geography, sociology and so on. Thorough research into Croatian history, which is in this area a kind of prism of the history of Central Europe on its border with the Balkans, demands language proficiency not only in Croatian and related languages but also in Latin, German, Hungarian and Turkish, including the knowledge of the philology and the palaeography of written records in these languages. Therefore, in addition to professional historians, the Unit employs a smaller number of experts in other disciplines specialising in the work on archival materials, in editing and translation of source material.
The entirety of the Unit’s activities comprises the following components:
1. Historical research and the publishing of the results
Until 2013, this fundamental scholarly work has been chiefly carried out within research projects approved by the Ministry of Science and Education. To date, the Unit has accomplished three cycles of research projects (1997-2002, 2002-2006, 2007-2013). Furthermore, research into some particular topics is carried out within various individual and team projects, as a rule in conformity with the general plan of the Unit’s scholarly work.
2. The organization of historical research
Research is conducted through the organization of scholarly conferences and similar meetings as well as through research and publishing projects where, apart from researchers of the Unit and the Institute, historians and researchers of other disciplines from other Croatian and foreign institutions also take part. Up to 2010 the Unit had organized, or co-organized, seven symposia (with published proceeedings), and since 2012 it has started to organize regularly an international symposium once a year. Moreover, the Unit operates as a well-equipped, cooperative and inspiring environment for young researchers (research novices) who are employed while specialising in historical research and preparing their doctoral dissertations.
3. Scholarly publishing
From its beginnings the Unit has been highly active in publishing. To date, the Unit has published nearly 100 books (monographs, collective volumes, editions of source materials and so on). About one third has been published by the Unit alone, and the rest in cooperation with other research and cultural institutions in joint publication ventures, as well as with commercial publishers. Apart from book publishing, in 2001 the Unit started the scholarly journal Scrinia Slavonica which has been published regularly in one volume annually.
4. Other activities
The majority of researchers of the Unit give courses in history at universities or they cooperate with higher education institutions as mentors and members of commissions for the evaluation of master’s and PhD theses. The Unit organizes and its researchers participate in various book presentations, public lectures, round-table discussions, panel discussions and so on.
The Unit possesses an ample library with around 10,000 titles (books and journals), open for the use of students and the general public.
The German Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has approved full funding for a research group linkage project involving the Croatian Institute of History – Branch for the History of Slavonia, Srijem and Baranja in Slavonski Brod, the Ruhr Bochum Center for Mediterranean Studies and the Department of Eastern and Southeastern European History at the Leipzig University.Pročitajte više