Trauma, Experience and Narrative in Europe after World War II

Ville Kivimäki (Editor), Peter Leese (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportAnthologyScientificpeer-review


This book promotes a historically and culturally sensitive understanding of trauma during and after World War II. Focusing especially on Eastern and Central Europe, its contributors take a fresh look at the experiences of violence and loss in 1939–45 and their long-term effects in different cultures and societies. The chapters analyze traumatic experiences among soldiers and civilians alike and expand the study of traumatic violence beyond psychiatric discourses and treatments. While acknowledging the problems of applying a present-day medical concept to the past, this book makes a case for a cultural, social and historical study of trauma. Moving the focus of historical trauma studies from World War I to World War II and from Western Europe to the east, it breaks new ground and helps to explain the troublesome politics of memory and trauma in post-1945 Europe all the way to the present day. This book is an outcome of a workshop project ‘Historical Trauma Studies,’ funded by the Joint Committee for the Nordic Research Councils in the Humanities and Social Sciences (NOS-HS) in 2018–20.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages352
ISBN (Electronic)9783030846633
ISBN (Print)9783030846626, 978-3-030-84665-7
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Publication typeC2 Edited book

Publication series

NamePalgrave Studies in the History of Experience
ISSN (Print)2524-8960
ISSN (Electronic)2524-8979


  • trauma
  • World War II
  • history of emotions
  • cultural history
  • social history
  • Europe
  • post-war
  • history of experiences
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 3


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