Presentation Details

The Second International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities

Slavs and Germans after Hitler: Collective and Individual rights in Carinthia

Dr Robert Graham Knight.

This paper examines the ethnic politics of the border area of Austria/Yugoslavia (Slovenia). It looks in particular at the use of rights in relation to ethnic politics. It examines how liberal conceptions of rights, which focussed on the decision of the individual, were combined with Catholic views of the natural rights of the parent in order to hasten the assimilation of the minority. In this way the aim of the elimination of Slav culture and language from a German "stronghold" was continued and adapted under the conditions of formal multiparty democracy. The particular field where this took place was in primary education. Between 1945 and 1960 the competing claims of bilingual and German language education were asserted, culminating in a major success for the latter.


Dr Robert Graham Knight  (United Kingdom)
Lecturer in History
Department of Politics
Loughborough University

born 1952, B.A. Cambridge 1974, PhD LSE 1986, publications on post-war Austria and the legacy of national socialism, antisemitism, restitution, the Cold War etc.

  • Ethnicity
  • Rights
  • Post-war History
  • Central Europe

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)