Adrian Grama

Gaststipendiat von Januar 2015 bis Mitte April 2015


Adrian Grama graduated in Political Science from the University of Bucharest. He is currently a PhD candidate at the Central European University, History Department with a thesis entitled The Labor Question in Postwar Romania, 1944-1955. He also serves as associate editor for European Review of History / Revue européenne d’histoire.

Dissertationsprojekt: The Labour Question in Postwar Romania (1944-1954)

My doctoral dissertation explores the dynamics of social change in mid-twentieth century Romania from the vantage point of industrial workers. In line with the recent turn to working-class history in East Central Europe, my project examines the manifold ways in which metalworkers and miners lived through and labored along the successive dictatorships of the 1940s and 1950s in Romania. Informed by historical anthropology, the project sets itself two complementary tasks. First, it aims to recover through thick description the cultural universe of industrial workers and the sheer gamut of experiences nurtured by the unfolding of the Second World War on the home-front. Secondly, it makes an argument about the social context in which postwar industrialization took place in terms of “cheap labour”. In this view, socialist industrialization had to rely on wartime policies designed to keep workers’ purchasing power as low as possible in order to enable massive investments in heavy industry. My dissertation contributes to an emergent critical historiography that tries to locate the social consequences of the Second World War in East Central Europe and to provide a more nuanced understanding of the postwar transition to state socialism.