From the Writing of Diaries Under Stalin to the German and Soviet Experience of the Eastern Front. A Conversation with Jochen Hellbeck
Keywords:Red Army, Second World War, Diaries, Battle of Stalingrad
Jochen Hellbeck is particularly interested in autobiographical accounts and people’s self-understanding in historical perspective. He is a Russian specialist by background and a Distinguished Professor of History at Rutgers University in the United States. His book Revolution on My Mind. Writing a Diary under Stalin was published by Harvard in 2009 and explores personal diaries written in the Soviet Union under Stalin, addressing the paradox of self-expression in an overtly repressive political system. More recently he has explored in comparative and transnational ways how the Soviet, German, and British states mobilised their citizens to fight the World War II. Stalingrad – The City that Defeated the III Reich was first published in Germany in 2015 and it is the first western study to probe the meaning of the Battle of Stalingrad for the Soviet soldiers and civilians who defended the city, in that key moment of World War II. This conversation is divided in three parts. The first one mainly deals with the research done by Hellbeck in the context of the book Revolution in My Mind. The second part considers the work related to the book Stalingrad. And the third part focus mainly on Jochen´s current book project.