Spaces of Interaction between the Socialist Camp and the Global South. Knowledge Production, Trade, and Scientific-Technical Cooperation in the Cold War Era
|Workshop Dates||Thursday, 26 October 2017 – Friday, 27 October 2017|
To tell the story of the post-war and post-colonial globalization without falling into the trap of a simplified vision of bipartite economic division of the world, the workshop’s aim was to renew the spatial approach as an analytical category and methodological approach to alternative means of thinking of global (especially socialist) entanglements and socialist impact on new order. Although the “socialist globalization” seems to be an already established term, with several international projects dedicated to it, the question still exists how the global was/is revealed and made through the interaction within the East-South cooperation. Aiming to explore socialistic spaces of interaction as a major actor in producing and (re)shaping social, political, cultural, and economic processes, as well as the rationale of actors who used and influenced spatial dynamics, the workshop invited international scholars to discuss the socialistic bloc in its role as a global player and its contribution to the (un)making of globalization and the global economic system. To what extent can the spaces of interaction, produced by East-South entanglements, be seen as exceptional zones or rather as a systematic product of globalization? To what extent can we speak about one globalization and the socialistic engagement in it or were there rather few alternative globalization paths?
You can find the full workshop report online at H/SOZ/KULT, Link (15 May 2018)
Project B3: “East-South Relations during the Global Cold War: Economic Activities and Area Studies Interests of East Central European CMEA Countries in Africa”
At the centre of this project, we discuss the question which spatial formats became relevant to bloc formation during the Cold War and how this affected the relations between state socialist countries of Eastern Europe and the postcolonist Africa. We are asking this question in order to gain knowledge about the development (and the dissolving) of a spatial format in a specific historic spatial order.
In several parts of the study we analyse economic relations between African and (South-) East European countries. We focus on trade and scientific-technical cooperation as well as related cultural transfer. Furthermore, we look at the role of the socialist states in trying to reform the international economic order, with a focus on Hungarian activities.
This allows us to shed light on (1) the centralizing and centrifugal tendencies in the Eastern bloc, in particular with regard to the East Central European states and their relations to African countries; (2) the positioning strategies of East European and African states as well as of relevant actors regarding bloc division, decolonization, and the change of global economic relations; and (3) the debates regarding different development paths and related spatial orders.
In the context of this project, three case studies will be developed:
- “Chairman Cotton”. Handel, Infrastruktur und Wissenstransfer zwischen Bulgarien und afrikanischen Staaten in den 1950er bis 1970er Jahren (Jan Zofka)
Chairman Cotton: Trade, Infrastructures and Knowledge Exchange between Socialist Bulgaria and African States (1950s to 1970s)
- Baustellen des Afrikanischen Sozialismus. Wirtschaftsbeziehungen und wissenschaftlich- technische Kooperation zwischen Ghana und den ostmitteleuropäischen sozialistischen Ländern 1957 bis 1972 (Anne Harmetz)African Socialism under Construction: Economic Relations and Scientific-technical Cooperation between Ghana and Eastern European Socialist Countries, 1957–1972
- Die Staaten des RGW und das Konzept der “New International Economic Order” (Bence Koscev)
European CMEA countries and the concept of the New International Economic Order