Oana-Valentina Sorescu-Iudean, M.A.

Contact

Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies
Universität Regensburg
Landshuter Str. 4
D-93047 Regensburg
Tel.: +49(0)941 / 943 - 5487
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Doctoral Project

The Evolution of Testamentary Behavior in Eighteenth Century Hermannstadt (Sibiu)

The impact of Reformed precepts on the day-to-day lives of 16th century Europeans, and the changes that these beliefs enacted upon the social fabric of early modern communities have been widely discussed in historiography. Despite much excellent work regarding the process of confessionalisation in Central and South-Eastern Europe, which focused on small communities, limited regions, or addressed singular issues (such as the transformation of attitudes towards death, authority, other confessions), historiography has not yet fully explored the long-ranging effects of the Reformation in this geographical area.

This study aims to remedy this gap in the current understanding of the evolution of Reformed communities between the 16th and the 18th centuries, seen through the lens of the implementation and internalization of Lutheran beliefs and precepts. By focusing on testamentary behavior and practices in the major Saxon cities of Transylvania (Sibiu, Braşov, Bistriţa, Sighişoara and Mediaş), I will attempt to trace the development of new types of attitudes towards wealth, property, charity, social and kinship networks as well as towards the Saxon community itself, as an island of Lutheranism in a multi-confessional and multi-ethnical region. Moreover, a quantitative statistical analysis will complement this approach, in order to achieve a deeper understanding of the shifts in the social and economic hierarchy among the Saxon communities, their degree of cohesion, and the broader patterns of wealth transmission during the early modern period. An analysis of the effects of the Reformation in this region would not be complete without a thorough exploration of these issues.

Please also see an overview of her project in the Graduate School's Newsletter Nr. 3, Winter Semester 2014/15.

Curriculum Vitae

2007-2010 Studies of History, English Medieval Literature and Cultural History in Bukarest and Berlin. 2009-2010 Erasmus Scholarship at the Freie Universität Berlin. 2011-2013 Joint Master "Geschichte des Südöstlichen Europa" at the University of Cluj-Napoca and the University of Graz.

Positions, Assignments and Memberships