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Bruce Berglund, selected publications

Edited Books

Christianity and Modernity in Eastern Europe (co-editor, with Brian A. Porter-Szucs, University of Michigan). Central European University Press, 2010.

"A volume that specialists in the history of Christianity in other regions of the world will read with great interest, and a degree of envy. As an historian of religion in Western Europe, I can say that although there is a vast literature on the religious history of the nineteenth century and a growing literature on the twentieth century, there is nothing quite like this."
–from the Foreword by Hugh McLeod, author of The Religious Crisis of the 1960s

This collection of essays is the first work to address the history of the Christian churches in 19th- and 20th-century Eastern Europe, drawing from archives and other sources made available since the fall of communism. The thirteen essays in the book cover, among other topics, Christianity and antisemitism in interwar Hungary, the dissolution of the Greek Catholic Church in postwar Ukraine and Romania, human rights and peace movements in communist East Germany and Czechoslovakia, and a famous prophetess in postwar Bulgaria. Contributors to the volume, who represent the University of Washington, Rutgers, King's College London, Central European University, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and other institutions, met to discuss their research in meetings in 2005 at Calvin and in 2006 at the German Historical Institute in Warsaw, both times with funding from the Calvin Center for Christian Scholarship.

Current projects

The Philosopher, the Architect, and the Social Worker: Religion, Art, and Ideals in Modern Prague. Forthcoming in 2016 from Central European University Press.

The book focuses on three principal characters: Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, the philosophy professor who became Czechoslovakia’s first president; his daughter Alice Garrigue Masaryková, a social worker trained in the settlement houses of Chicago who became the founding director of the Czechoslovak Red Cross; and Jože Plečnik, the Slovenian architect who directed the renovations of Prague Castle in the 1920s-30s, crafting the courtyards and gardens that millions of tourists visit today. The book centers on these three and their relationship in the transformation of the Castle, a project that was aimed to create, in the words of Masaryková, “a sacred acropolis.” I also look at other important cultural figures in interwar Prague in order to give a broader perspective of the debates over the future of religion, the sources of modern morality, and the foundations of a democratic society. 

Digging in the Corners: Cultures of Global Hockey. Co-authors: Will Katerberg (Calvin College) and Tobias Stark (Linnaeus University).

This book project will be published as part of the new University of California Press series “Sport in World History.” We are looking at the global sport of ice hockey. But rather than surveying the history of the sport in all of the places it’s played, we will look at specific regions where hockey has become an integral part of the culture.

The book’s focus will be four “corners” of the hockey-playing world: the Canadian Prairie provinces, Minnesota, Sweden, and the Czech Republic. These areas tend to be neglected in academic and popular writing on hockey’s history, which focuses more on Ontario, Quebec, and the major US cities in the NHL. Keeping in mind the sport’s regional variation, we will investigate its development and popularity in the corner regions, and we’ll look at how hockey has contributed to people’s sense of place and their identities as inhabitants of those places – in the same way that footballis associated with Brazil or surfing with Hawaii.  

As the book’s title states, we plan to dig into the practice of hockey at the local level – in places like the northern Swedish mining town of Kiruna, home of the first European star in the NHL, Börje Salming, and the towns of the Minnesota Iron Range, which produced the top-scoring line on the 1980 US Olympic team as well as the infamous “Hanson Brothers” of the iconic 1977 film Slap Shot. Our approach will be comparative. We will explore developments present in multiple regions, such as the popularity of hockey in remote mining and agricultural areas, and the distinct characteristics of each region, like communist rule in Czechoslovakia.

Sportologically Speaking: Essays and Interviews on More than Sports. Forthcoming in 2016 from Temple University Press.

This book will be a published collection of essays from The Allrounder website, which I edit. The essays are varied in subject matter. For example, Devoney Looser’s piece on the current popularity of roller derby is based on research into this global trend, discussion of feminist theory, and the writer’s own experience in the sport. Meanwhile, Nicholas Walton’s piece “I Want My Son To Be Miserable” is a hilarious riff on a minor news story about a Manchester man who sold his infant son’s future sports allegiance on eBay.  

The anthology will include essays that look at specific events of the past year in sports, such as the Patriots’ win in Super Bowl XLIX, the 2014 Men’s World Cup, and Ronda Rousey’s 14-second defeat of Cat Zingano in their UFC title match. Essays about people like Australian cricketer Phil Hughes, Indian sprinter Dutee Chand, and English rugby league star Sam Burgess will introduce American readers to unfamiliar yet significant figures in world sports. At the same time, they will find plenty of well-known figures in the book: Mike Tyson, Leo Messi, Ronda Rousey, Bill Belichick and Tom Brady. This mix is deliberate: Sportologically Speaking will offer fresh perspectives on widely known people and episodes in American sports, while at the same time broadening readers’ knowledge with new stories from other parts of the world – or from games in the U.S. that are overlooked by sports media.

Encyclopedia and reference articles

“East European Christianity and the Boundaries of Europe,” article in Handbook of Global Contemporary Christianity, edited by Stephen J. Hunt, pp. 188-207. Leiden: Brill, 2015.

“Totalitarianism,” article in The Brill Encyclopedia of Christianity, vol. 5. Leiden: Brill, 2007.

Eastern Europe, article in Berkshire Encyclopedia of World History, edited by William H. McNeill, vol. 2, 603-610. Berkshire Publishing, 2004.

Ivo Andric, Edvard Benes, Karel Capek, Milovan Djilas, Jaroslav Hasek, Vaclav Havel, Milan Kundera, Tomas Masaryk, articles in Biographical Dictionary of Literary Influences: The 20th Century, edited by John Powell. Greenwood Press, 2004.


“‘'We stand on the threshold of a new age’: Alice Masaryková, the Czechoslovak Red Cross, and the Building of a New Europe.” In Aftermaths of War: Women’s Movements and Female Activists, 1918-1923. Edited by Ingrid Sharp and Matthew Stibbe. Leiden: Brill, 2011.

“Demokratický Hrad jako posvátný prostor (Náboženství a ideály v obnově Pražského hradu)" [The Democratic Castle as Sacred Space: Religion and Ideals in the Renovation of Prague Castle], translated into Czech by Martin C. Putna, Souvislosti: Revue pro literaturu a kulturu (September 2007): 208-221. Read a PDF English version.

"Building a Church for a New Age: The Search for a Modern Catholic Art in Turn-of-the-Century Central Europe.” Centropa: A Journal of Central European Architecture and Related Arts 3, no. 3 (September 2003): 225-239. Winner of the 2004 Stanley Z. Pech Prize of the Czechoslovak History Conference.

“"All Germans are the same’: Czech and Sudeten German Exiles in Britain and the Transfer Plans.” National Identities 2:3 (Summer 2000): 225-44.