International historians to debate Sarajevo 1914 'the South Slav Question' at Southampton University

Posted on on 16 May 2014
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Southampton University in the UK is marking the Centenary of Archduke Franz Ferdinand's assassination with an international conference in June 2014.

Sarajevo 1914: Spark and Impact will debate the murder that triggered the First World War in the context of local and regional unrest in the 'South Slav' areas of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

More than 20 historians from across Europe, including experts from Croatia, Serbia and Austria, will be taking part in the event from June 26-28 at Southampton University's Highfield Campus.

The main speakers include Professor Christopher Clark, author of The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914.

Southampton University says the assassinations of Franz Ferdinand and his wife were "evidence of an unresolved ‘South Slav problem’ in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, of serious social tensions in the region, and of a Habsburg regime whose imperial mission was at odds with popular aspirations in the Balkans. 

"The regional context in which the murders occurred remains controversial: some aspects have been well considered by historians over the past century but many are completely under-researched.

"Above all, there have been few attempts to think about the causes and repercussions of the South Slav problem in the interaction of its local, regional and international dimensions."

The University describes the conference as "a unique opportunity to hear historians discussing a subject which is crucial to understanding why the First World War took place and why the Habsburg Empire collapsed in 1918, transforming south-eastern Europe for the 20th century."

'Sarajevo 1914: Spark and Impact' will be opened by Dr Emil Brix, Austrian Ambassador to the UK, on Thursday 26th June 2014

More information and details of how to register can be found here.

Information supplied by the Faculty of Humanities, Southampton University

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News