5 April 2012
In contrast to its self-portrayal as the ‘East’ vis-à-vis France, Germany’s national self posed as the ‘West’ in relation to its Slavic neighbors. Studia Zahodnie in Poland has meant German Studies while Ostforschung in Germany meant Polish studies. The imagining of East/West in virtual reality does not stop at the German-Polish border. Posited as the ‘East’ by Germans, Poles regarded themselves as ‘Europeans’ against the ‘Asiatic’ Russians. In turn, Russians, underprivileged as ‘Tartars’ in Europe, could represent themselves as Europeans confronting Asian neighbors as indicated in the Dostoyevsky’s diary.