Eastern Europe Unmapped

Congratulations to Comparative Literature professors, Irene Kacandes and Yuliya Komska, who recently published Eastern Europe Unmapped: Beyond Borders and Peripheries (Berghahn Books 2017). There, they and their contributors propose that geography does not circumscribe Eastern Europe's history, culture or destiny.  The eleven chapters offer demonstrations from divergent times and places that the area's natives have consistently forged links to discontiguous lands and populations, whether willingly or by force.  Komska offers a prodigious overview of approaches to studying Eastern Europe and points out where they fall short.  Kacandes's chapter explores "elective affinities," specifically her own entanglement with Poland and one Pole in particular, and how the choice to build discontiguous relationships cannot always be fully explained by logic or necessity.
The book's cover is graced by a reproduction of "Untitled: Global Order" (2001, mixed media) by Guillermo Kuitca, an Argentinian artist with Eastern European roots, who in myriad works remaps and unmaps our world (used courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth).