In order to provide for the first time a complete overview and compilation of the German-language press from Eastern Europe, I started in 2012 to collect all available bibliographical data on newspapers, journals, popular calendars, almanachs and yearbooks which were published by members of German-language minorities in this part of the continent. My research was facilitated by already existing printed bibliographies covering several regions, e.g. the excellent publications by Mária Rosza (historical Hungary; an online edition is available)1 or Tanja Žigon (Slovenia)2 and Jörg Meier3. For regions where the bibliographical data was insufficient, the Zeitschriftendatenbank / Database of Journals and other online catalogues proved to be very useful. In addition I undertook also some research in libraries and archives and emended some obvious mistakes in the existing bibliographies.
The periodicals were bibliographically recorded according to the following criteria:
- The titles were publications of a German-language minority and can therefore be considered as its “products”. Periodicals which were stronlgy influenced from the German-language area from Germany or Austria or subjected to enforced conformity (e.g. under pressure of the National Socialist Regime in WWII or of the Communist Party in the Soviet Union) do not represent minority heritage and were therefore not included.
- Professional journals were considered if their articles dealt in large part with issues connected to the minority communities.
- No temporal limitation was applied; all periodicals from the Early Modern Period until the present (-2013) were included.
- Periodicals from Jewish German-language communities (e.g. Prague, Budapest, Bucovina region) were also implemented.
The results are two volumes with bibliographical data on currently 5.226 titles, subdivided according to their places of publication within the European national state borders (as of 2013):
In addition to the periodicals I also compiled a specialized bibliography on all scientific publications which I could find:
The research work is not yet finished: there are about 1.000 – 1.200 titles missing which I can hopefully add in the next years based on new bibliographies from other researchers and my own library and archive visits in Eastern Europe. Furthermore some updates on the already existing data sets are necessary (e.g. the publication periods are in some cases too short or title changes are mistakened for a new formation of the respective periodicals). I also hope to get funding for converting the bibliography into a database, possibly with a georeferencing element, thus enabling a descriptive visualization of the German-language press landscape in Eastern Europe.
The bibliography project was conducted at the Institute for East and Southeast European Studies (Regensburg/Germany), funded by the Federal Government Comissioner for Culture and the Media. On the importance of newspapers for research and historical education see this article.
- Mária Rosza: Deutschsprachige Presse in Ungarn –
Magyarországi német nyelvű sajtó 1921-2000. Bibliographie –
Bibliográfia. Budapest 2006. This bibliography was also published online: http://www.bkge.de/7117.html
- Tanja Žigon: Deutschsprachige Presse in der Untersteiermark, in Kärnten, in Görz und Triest. Teil 1, Deutschsprachige Presse in Krain bis 1860. In:
Berichte und Forschungen. Jahrbuch des Bundesinstituts für
Kultur und Geschichte der Deutschen im östlichen Europa 12
(2004), pp. 199-240; Teil 2, Teil 3, (2005), pp. 127–213
- Jörg Meier: Untersuchungen zur deutschsprachigen Presse in
der Slowakei: Sprache und Geschichte der Zeitung „Zipser
Anzeiger/Zipser Bote“. Leutschau 1993