Cross Border Perspectives on the Future and Our Past

Marijn Molema, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Faculteit der Letteren, Economische en sociale geschiedenis

Abstract: Cross Border Perspectives on the Future and Our Past

This lecture dives into three questions. First, it will ask what we are doing when we study border regions? Borders are attractive to historians, and border regions are special because of the particular social, economic and cultural processes that can be researched here. Nevertheless, it is possible and necessary to categorize and compare individual border regions. Second, the lecture will ask why historians should focus on border regions at all? The answer is twofold: it enriches the narratives of our national and European history, and it contributes to the emancipation of border regions. The third question is how to progress? A plea is made for synthesizing individual case studies, as well as connections between historians who renew our history with a cross border approach.