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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

Cathedral and Castle in 20th-Century Central Europe: The Religious and the Modern in Architecture, Art and Thought, 1910-1939
This book will take a new look at the cultural history of Central Europe by addressing how artists, writers, and intellectuals addressed religion and religious themes in their work. The book focuses on Slovene architect Joze Plecnik, a Slovene trained in Vienna, who has been recognized as one of the most important architects of early 20th-century Europe. Some of his most notable works were completed in Prague during the 1920s-30s.

In addition to being a widely respected architect, Plecnik was also a faithful Catholic. He was one of a number of artists in the early 20th century, in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia, who were recognized both as modernists and believers. This book will discuss how they and their critics understood their work. The project is based upon research in Prague and Ljubljana, Slovenia, made possible by a U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Faculty Research Grant, a Calvin College Alumni Association Grant, and a Calvin Research Fellowship. Initial research in the project was also completed by a Calvin student, with funding from a McGregor Summer Research Fellowship. That student, Melissa Smith, has gone on to bigger things. Check out the website about her research in architectural history:

Making Fans: A Cultural History of Sports in the Contemporary World
It was the night of January 24, 2010.  I was tucking my sons to bed, pulling up their purple-and-gold blankets, emblazoned with the logo of the Minnesota Vikings. On the wall above their heads was a large mural of the Vikings helmet, purple with the iconic white horn, and posters of their favorite players. We had just watched our team lose the NFC Championship in heartbreaking fashion, 31-28 in overtime. The New Orleans Saints went on to Super Bowl, while Vikings fans were again disappointed that their team had come so close to a glorious win, only to collapse at the end. As I kissed the boys goodnight, my older son asked, "Dad, are you surprised that they lost?"
            "No," I replied, in all honesty, "I would have been surprised if they won."
            "Then why do you keep rooting for them?"

There is a book in that question.

Making Fans asks: Why do fans follow teams? Why do they spend money on tickets and merchandise?  Why do they invest their time and emotional energy, and stake their identities to loyalty to a team? These questions are similar to those that historians of nationalism have been asking for the last three decades.  Just as nations are now recognized as constructed communities, in which narratives, symbols, and rituals mark the boundaries between "us" and "them," so can we look at supporters of teams as well-defined social groups that share stories passed from generation to generation, that participate almost instinctually in distinctive rites, and that nurture prejudices against rivals. Looking at clubs and their fans in different world regions, and in different team sports, Making Fans looks at these stories, rites, and prejudices, the ways that they are conveyed and learned, and how they have come to be, for many people in the world today, their most important source of identity.    

Encyclopedia and reference articles

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.

"Political Culture and Cultural Identity: The Messages of Czechoslovak Propaganda in Britain during the Second World War,” published in Czech translation. Strední Evropa 14 (December 1998): 59-71.

"Emigrantstina in England: Opposition to Edvard Benes during the Second World War,” published in Czech translation. Historie a vojenství 47:5 (September 1998): 26-60.