Tseli Germanii v Pervoi mirovoi voine na Vostoke: krutye povoroty istorii i istoriografii | The Goals of Germany in the East during the First World War: Sharp Turns in History and Historiography
Volume 31 (2015): Empires and Nationalisms in the Great War: Interactions in East-Central Europe = Imperijos ir nacionalizmai Didžiajame kare: sąveikos Vidurio Rytų Europoje, pp. 73–95
Pub. online: 15 December 2015 Type: Article Open Access
15 December 2015
15 December 2015
In the evaluation of the goals of the countries that fought in the First World War, one of the most persistent stereotypes testifies to the particular aggressiveness of the Kaiser’s Germany, and its exclusive role in the outbreak of the war. This opinion is directly related to Lithuania, when it comes to the expansionist approach of Germany with respect to the western border zones of the Russian Empire. The paper looks for the origins of these historiographic stereotypes, by analysing how the goals of Germany in the First World War were presented in Soviet historiography, and, in a broader sense, in socialist bloc historiography; and how Lithuanian historiography in the period of restored independence has been impacted by the approaches of foreign researchers. After looking at studies of recent resonant historiographic trends with respect to the military aims of the Kaiser’s Germany, and their traces in the Lithuanian study of history, the author makes an attempt to verify the validity of the statement about ‘German expansionism’ as regards Lithuania and the neighbouring region in the initial period of the war, which has been little explored in Lithuania.