Partial Assimilation. Narrative Models of Identity in Historians’ Résumés (December 1951) Cover Image

Részleges hasonulás. Narratív identitásmodellek a történészek önéletrajzaiban (1951. december)
Partial Assimilation. Narrative Models of Identity in Historians’ Résumés (December 1951)

Author(s): Katalin Baráth
Subject(s): Political history, Social history, Post-War period (1950 - 1989)
Published by: KORALL Társadalomtörténeti Egyesület
Keywords: history; curriculum vitae; textbased analysis; regime change; historians;

Summary/Abstract: The study examines the corpus of forty-two résumés written by historians in the same month and for the same purpose: they all applied for scholarship in December 1951. This body of sources is the product of the recruitment campaign following the 1949 communist takeover and the subsequent decimation of existing work collectives. The interplay of these losses and the disproportionately overplanned and notoriously underachieved production quotas brought about by sovietisation created an increased demand for workforce. Although the source may be approached from various angles, the study is limited to a textbased analysis whereby the corpus is interpreted as a response to a communication situation in the past. This perspective is especially useful considering the fact that all the résumés involved were ‘successful’: nearly all the authors were awarded scholarships and some went on to graduate with a doctoral degree. The résumés can be categorised into four identity types. Based on the characteristics of these identity types and the evaluation of the résumés by the official decision-makers, the study concludes that the community of historians was more heterogeneous at the time than would be expected in view of the period in general. Regarding expectations and performance, it seems that adopting the official ideology was not a mandatory criterion for employment, although it certainly did not mean that academics were free to choose their research subject in any position.

  • Issue Year: 2016
  • Issue No: 64
  • Page Range: 26-45
  • Page Count: 20
  • Language: Hungarian