The Relations Between Transylvanian Saxons And Baltic Germans During The 1920s

Vasile Ciobanu

Professor, “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu, E-mail:

Doi number: 10.53604/rjbns.v1i1_6

An earlier version of this paper has been presented at the „Interethnische Beziehungen und regionale Identität. Das Baltikum und Siebenbürgen im Vergleich“ symposium organized in 1999 by Bundesinstitut für ostdeutsche Kultur und Geschichte Oldenburg Baltische Historische Kommission and Südostdeutsche Historische Kommission. The German version was published in „Jahrbuch des baltischen Deutschtums 2003“, Lüneburg 2002, 194–204 and the Romanian version was published by “Studia Universitatis Cibiniensis. Series Historica”, I, 2004, 263-271.

The relationship between the Saxons and the German Balts has been already investigated, but the available archival material, however, allows me to deepen the problem of cultural relations between the two German minorities. This relationship has taken both an institutional and a personal form. The first form involved cooperation between clubs, societies and editors of publications, while the second consisted of direct contact between cultured people. The two kinds of cooperation have created in the 1920s a network of mental relations based on the solidarity of all Germans living abroad. A special contribution in the establishment of these relations was brought forth by the Cultural Office of the Germans in Greater Romania, founded in 1922 in Sibiu by Richard Csaki, and by magazine “Ostland”, which was also published in Sibiu starting with 1926. Csaki and others worked in the field of cultural policy together with representatives of the German Balts such as Ewal Ammende, Werner Hasselblatt, Axel de Vries or Max von Ravick. This article investigates these bonds as part of the wider frame of German cultural networks operating in-between the Baltic and the Black seas.

Rezumat: Relaţiile dintre Germanii Baltici şi Saşi au constituit deja subiectul unor cercetări. Acest articol adânceşte însă analiza asupra relaţiilor culturale dintre cele două minorităţi. Două aspecte sunt aici analizate: relaţiile culturale la nivel instituţional (între cluburi, societăţi culturale, publicaţii) şi cele la nivel personal (contacte directe ale elitelor intelectuale). Cooperarea de acest tip a fost facilitată în anii 1920 de solidaritatea germanilor care trăiau în afara graniţelor Germaniei. O atenţie deosebită este acordată exemplului oferit de relaţiile dintre Biroul Cultural al Germanilor din România Mare, fondat în 1922 la Sibiu de către Richard Csaki, şi magazinul “Ostland”, care din 1926 a fost de asemenea publicat la Sibiu. Datele furnizate de acest articol contribuie, de asemenea, la largirea cunoştinţelor legate de relaţiile culturale desfăşure între zona Mării Baltice şi zona Mării Negre în perioada interbelică.

Keywords: Saxons, Balts, cooperation, networks, cultural policy

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