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Tracing Travelling States. An Open Office

Screenshot from “Investigation of the Lord Lytton Mission”, Credits: Library of Congress
Screenshot from “Investigation of the Lord Lytton Mission”, Credits: Library of Congress
Oct 10, 2013 - Oct 11, 2013 12:30 pm to 04:00 pm
Karls Jaspers Centre

The members of A13 are looking forward to this year's Annual Conference of the Cluster "Asia and Europe", to which they are going to contribute with an open office project:

Being engaged with the management of empires, aspects of governmental representation, civil services, and administrative elites constitute key topics of the conference’s different panels. Since empires do not only imply internal management of their heterogeneous territories, but also external agitation, state representatives and foreign affairs’ agents in various functions travelling across Asia and Europe are important actors of common interest for the research on empires. As recent works have revealed, however, such border-crossing actors challenge the traditional methods of historians: lives beyond borders are hard to trace empirically and confront the researcher with new source-related problems.

During the Annual Conference, the database-focussed project A13 “Subaltern Diplomacy”, whose members are specialized in methods of Global History, opens its doors for all conference participants. They will provide information on the history of modern governmental representation, present innovative, internet-based tools to grasp its actors and show ways to a new diplomatic history which accounts for a Global History perspective. The potential of such new approaches can best be revealed by the project’s own database, the “League Of Nations Search Engine” (LONSEA), which will also be accessible in the open office. The database contains information on international organisations and their personnel from 1919 to 1945. Through its combination of institutional and biographical data, it allows for a unique insight into international live in the interwar period, the start-up phase of an increasingly globalised and public form of diplomacy. Taking LONSEA as well as other relevant online sources as examples, the open office presents to its visitors digital tools as a chance for diplomatic history under the global paradigm.

The office serves as a service station and a learning centre during the conference. Its members are happy to welcome anybody interested and warmly invite all conference participants to visit the office during its opening hours or to join the introducing presentation during Lunch Session I. They are also glad to suggest research tips if any guest should have an own enquiry for a certain diplomat or other travelling internationalist state agents.

Opening hours: The office is open to all conference participants on Thursday and Friday, October 10-11, from 12:30 to 16:00, Cluster Library R002

Introduction: An introducing presentation to the open office project is given on Thursday, October 10, 13:30 (Lunch Session I), R212