“Reformation with no Reforms”

The Political Economy ofBulgarian Communism1963 – 1989

Author: Martin Ivanov

Published by the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past, Open Society Institute and Ciela Publishers
Sofia 2008

This book is result of the extensive research of Martin Ivanov conducted as part of the Communism Research Project.

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Awarded ISRP Scholarships

Following the terms of the first call for Applications “ISRP Scholarships for Young Researchers” the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past granted three research scholarships to the following project proposals:

  • Institutional Memory and Individual Trajectories: The Profession of a Teacher (1949 – 1989), submitted by Miladina Monova (PhD in Social Anthropology, École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris and Research Assistant at Laboratoire d’Anthropologie des Institutions et Organisations Sociales, (LAIOS), Paris)
  • The Role of the Secret Police in Suppressing Dissent in Communist Bulgaria: Evidence from the Communist Party and State Security Archives, submitted by Martin Dimitrov (Assistant Professor, Department of Government, Darthmouth College and Center Associate, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University)
  • Memoirs and Historiographical Interpretations of the Collapse of the Communist Regime in Bulgaria, submitted by Petya Vassileva (PhD Student at the Department for Ethnographical Studies, Sofia University)
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The Power Structures of the Bulgarian Communist Party (1944-1989)

Author: Alexander Vezenkov

Published by Institute for Studies of the Recent Past, Open Society Institute and Ciela Publishers
Sofia 2008
ISBN-978-954-28-0198-6

This book is result of the extensive research of Alexander Vezenkov conducted as part of the Communism Research Project.

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Call for Memories “This is my Past” 2008

Following the encouraging results of the first “This is my Past” Call the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past announces second round of the public memory competition in three slightly different rubrics:

  • Personal diaries and memoirs (your own or family members) written before 1989. Five prizes on the amount of 500 leva will be awarded;
  • Lifestories and witnesses, recollections from the communist period from nowadays perspective. Four prizes on the amount of 500 leva will be awarded;
  • Authentic documents witnessing the concentration and labour camps in Belene, Lovech, Skravena, Kutsian, etc., including: photographs of prisoners, of the camps and the area around, drawings, official documents… Fifty archive items will be awarded with 100 leva. All photos and valuable personal belongings will be returned after their digitalization.

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ISRP Scholarships for Young Researchers

In the framework of its three year project “Knowledge and Memory Policies” the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past, Sofia opens annual Call for Applications for four-month scholarships, granted to young researchers – PhD students or post-doctoral students from the social sciences and humanities. Thematic scope of the project is the communist regime in Bulgaria.

The expected outcome of the funded research projects is comprehensive study (up to 20 000 words) of unexamined or barely known aspect of the communist history and legacy, submitted in a format suitable for academic publication.

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“The Silence about Communism” Conference

International Conference organised by Institute for Studies of the Recent Past and Maison des Sciences de l’Homme et de la Société, Sofia with the support of East – East Program: Partnership Beyond Borders and the French Embassy, Sofia

The Silence about Communism in Central and Southeastern Europe:
18 years after the Fall of the Berlin Wall

December 01 – 02, 2007 Sofia
Arena di Serdica Hotel

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Public Presentation and Debate “Rousse and its Stories about Communism”

What do people from Rousse think about their personal life during communist times? Is there a sup-pressed trauma and what is it all about?

On the occasion of the successful finalization of its first project “Memory Awaken – Voices from Below” the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past invites you to an open discussion about all these delicate issues and presentation of “Lightning do not struck Bushes”.

Venue: New History Museum of Rousse;

Time: October 17, 2007 at 14:00

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“Lightning does not struck Bushes”

hrastite_koricaEditor and Introducation by Daniela Koleva, Assoc. Prof. at the Sofia University, Department of Cultural Studies. Published by Institute for Studies of the Recent Past, Sofia, 2007. Bulgarian, 250 pages. Anthropological Interviews.

ISBN: 9789549597011

CONTENTS (only in Bulgarian)

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Public Presentation and Debate “Communism as a Life Story”

What do people from Bulgarian villages, small towns and cities think about their personal life during communist times? Can a personal life story give an answer about the country melancholy and alienation? Is there a sup pressed trauma and what is it all about?

On the occasion of the successful finalization of its first project “Memory Awaken – Voices from Below” the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past invites you to an open discussion about all these delicate issues and presentation of “Lightning do not struck Bushes”.

Venue: Red House – Centre for Culture and Debate, The Red Hall;

Time: October 10, 2007 at 18:30;

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“This is my past!” awards

During its final meeting on the 12 of June 2007 after exhaustive process of reviewing and long discussions about the received materials the Competition Committee, chaired by Prof. Ivaylo Znepolski and its members Assoc. Prof. Ivan Elenkov, Diana Ivanova and Georgi Gospodinov came with the following decision:

In the category “Authentic document (diaries, unpublished memoirs, correspondence and other maniscripts), created between 1944 and 1989” the Committee awards the amount of 1000 lv. and Honour Diploma to:

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