Interview: Michael North on Baltic history

German historian Michael North has written one of the best general histories of the Baltic region, titled appropriately enough The Baltic: A History and first published in 2015. He is Professor and Chair of Modern History at the University of Greifswald, Germany and has produced numerous papers, publications and books about the Baltic region.

Considering the cultural and economic currents of the Baltic even more than a conventional political treatment, and giving a picture a "Nordic Mediterranean", this very readable work is finally available in a Latvian translation and to mark the occasion, the author spoke with Latvian Radio's Māra Rozenberga.

Michael North interviewLatvian Radio

    "I was always interested in cultural representation, cultural exchanges and in artifacts... I always wanted to make the region visible," North says.

    "I think this is the first book that takes cultural issues into consideration. The first books [on the history on the region] in the early nineties were more or less about military conflicts, power struggles and things like that and these provided a picture which was a kind of military, confrontational picture and I did not like these issues because my research was in economics or cultural exchanges and soft relationships and that is why I said, okay... we should have another, new version and I'm still convinced that the cultural and economic history of the Baltic is as important or probably even more important as the political histories."

    Listen to the full interview in the audio file.

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