The Estonian War Museum’s annual
conference for 2017, marking the 100th anniversary of the establishment of
Estonian national units within the Russian imperial army, will aim at a
comparative study of national formations in the Great War. It will analyse the
political and military goals of the empires in recruiting and forming national
We are inviting papers and panel proposals on the following topics:
utilization of martial traditions of minority ethnicities and hereditary groups
in the armies of the European continental empires from the 19th century – from Cossacks to Polish Ulans and Hussars and
from Bosniaks to Finnish rifle battalions and dragoon regiments.
diversity and the territorial build-up of troops – the armies of the Kingdoms of
Prussia, Saxony, Bayern, Württemberg, and imperial Austrian and royal Hungarian
troops and royal Czech Landwehr within
Imperial armies, and Caucasian and Central Asian troops within the Russian
formation of new national units at the beginning of the First World War –
Latvian riflemen, Finnish Jägers, the Polish Legion, etc. Political aims or
build-up of national formations on the basis of prisoners of war – the
Czechoslovak Legion, Slavic Legion, the West Russian Volunteer Army, etc.
- The status
of members of national formations, national versus
imperial propaganda, language, uniforms, insignia, etc.
formations within the command structure – relations of national units with
higher commands within the imperial armed forces.
formations and the processes of state-building. The role of national units in
the development of nation states.
formations and party politics. Relations between the national units and
soldiers’ committees. Soldiers’ congresses.
formations in war – weapons, equipment, operations, battles, casualties.
of recruitment. The build-up of officer corps of national formations and recovering
formations in wars of independence – deployment without re-organization, or as
the core of new units.
weariness and veteran policies – the treatment of the veterans of the Great War
in new nation states.
- The use of
the experience of national units in the Second World War – old wine in new
preservation of the traditions of national formations in modern armies.
The due date for sending the abstracts of the papers is 31 January 2017.
For more detailed information please see Call for papers and panel proposals
The conference is organized by the Estonian War Museum – General Laidoner Museum in co-operation with the Estonian National Military College. The working languages of the conference will be English and Estonian.
Dr. Kaarel Piirimäe
Senior Research Fellow
Estonian War Museum - General Laidoner Museum email@example.com