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Politics and Society in the Baltic Sea Region

Editorial information
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Volumes published


Politics and Society in the Baltic Sea Region is a short-form open access monograph series published by University of Tartu Press which is devoted to social, political, and historical issues in the countries surrounding the Baltic Sea. To this day, a considerable amount of research carried out in the social sciences at Baltic universities remains largely unknown to the wider academic community due to either language or publishing constraints. Significant analytical findings and relevant conceptual discussions about human and social developments, socioeconomic challenges, media discourses or political cultures in the region do not get the broad international attention they deserve. The specific aim of the series is therefore to publish work especially by emerging scholars, who focus on current issues in the Baltic states and their specific regional and geopolitical contexts and challenges. Open to a conceivably wide range of thematic, conceptual and methodological approaches, the series is a forum for high-level scholarship that brings novel perspectives and significantly enriches international knowledge and understanding of the Baltic Sea region.

The series invites submissions of manuscripts in English of between 40,000–70,000 words in all social science disciplines, including, but not limited to, politics, sociology, media and communication studies, modern history, economics, law, human geography, and interdisciplinary approaches. Manuscripts must demonstrate a clear regional focus, both in empirical and/or conceptual terms, and relevance for our understanding of contemporary politics and society in the Baltic Sea region.
The series also welcomes edited volumes featuring a collection of short chapters on a clearly defined theme. We encourage the organizers of workshops and conference panels to contact the series editor to discuss proposals for an edited volume.

In order to ensure high quality and a broad readership, all manuscripts are subjected to international peer review and made accessible through open access repositories, including the  international open access OAPEN and DOAB databases and the University of Tartu Library. In addition, all publications are widely marketed through UTP printed and electronic media.

If you are currently working on a book project or have just finished a manuscript, please contact us. We would very much like to hear from you!

Editorial information

Series Editor (since 2021): Dr Catherine Gibson (

Editorial Board: Daunis Auers (University of Latvia, Latvia), Li Bennich-Björkman (University of Uppsala, Sweden), Bernd Henningsen (Humboldt University Berlin, Germany), Rasma Karklins (University of Illinois at Chicago, USA/ University of Latvia, Latvia), Ene Kõresaar (University of Tartu, Estonia), Marju Lauristin (University of Tartu, Estonia), Lauri Mälksoo (University of Tartu, Estonia), Michael North (University of Greifswald, Germany), Tiiu Paas (University of Tartu, Estonia), David Smith (University of Glasgow, UK), Linas Venclauskas (Vytautas Magnus University, Kaunas, Lithuania), Ramūnas Vilpišauskas (Vilnius University, Lithuania), Henri Vogt (University of Turku, Finland).

Volumes published

Vol. 1. Anne Kaun, Being a Young Citizen in Estonia: An Exploration of Young People's Civic and Media Experiences. 2013. 133 p. ISBN 978-9949-32-274-9 (print), 978-9949-32-275-6 (online).

The book gives an intriguing insight into how young people in Estonia, twenty years after the establishment of democracy, perceive their own role as citizens. It does so in a theoretical framework that stresses the embeddedness of the civic experiences in a media-dominated environment, thus closely linking civic and media experiences. Based on the analysis of both qualitative interview data and a relatively new method of using the internet as a complementary tool for engaging with open-ended diaries, the study explores the extent to which young citizens experience the media as being interwoven with their everyday lives and, in fact, constitutive of their social reality as citizens. With its particular focus on young Estonians, i.e. on a generation that has been brought up in a context of rapid political, economic and social change and that is well-known for its fascination with new communication technologies, the book is a valuable contribution to the growing international research on media and civic experiences.

Available in DOAB

Indexing: Web of Science™ Core Collection
Vol. 2. Paul Jordan, The Modern Fairy Tale: Nation Branding, National Identity and the Eurovision Song Contest in Estonia. 2014. 150 p. ISBN 978-9949-32-558-0 (print), 978-9949-32-559-7 (online).

This book provides a unique and intriguing insight into current debates concerning the relationship between nation and state as well as the political management of international image in today’s Europe through an examination of debates on nation branding and the Eurovision Song Contest. Europe is a contested construct and its boundaries are subject to redefinition. This work aims to advance critical thinking about contemporary nation branding and its relationship to, and influence on, nation building. In particular it focusses on key identity debates that the Eurovision Song Contest engendered in Estonia in the run-up to EU accession. The Eurovision Song Contest is an event which is often dismissed as musically and culturally inferior. However, this work demonstrates that it has the capacity to shed light on key identity debates and illuminate wider socio-political issues. Using a series of in-depth interviews with political elites, media professionals and opinion leaders, this book is a valuable contribution to the growing field of research on nation branding and the Eurovision Song Contest.

Available in DOAB

Indexing: Web of Science™ Core Collection
Vol. 3. Raili Nugin, The 1970s: Portrait of a Generation at the Doorstep. 2015. 192 p. ISBN 978-9949-32-909-0 (print), 978-9949-32-910-6 (online).

This book draws a sociological portrait of the age group born in the 1970s in Estonia and discusses its generational features and constructions. This cohort's coming of age coincided with the social and emotional turmoil of the re-independence movement in the late 1980s and with the transformation of society in the 1990s. This was the first cohort to negotiate its transition to adulthood in the new society, starting some new patterns of socialization, while also sharing some practices and experiences with older cohorts. Based on qualitative interviews as well as an analysis of media discourses and statistical data, the book traces the emergence of a new generation that draws its very own lessons from the past and from the social transformations that influenced life courses and careers. The book provides an intriguing discussion of socialization patterns and generation formation against the backdrop of post-socialist transformation. In addition, it provides a fascinating insight into the mind-set and experiences of a generation in the making, already shaping today's society and culture.


Indexing: Web of Science™ Core Collection
Vol. 4. Catherine Gibson, Borderlands between History and Memory: Latgale’s Palimpsestuous Past in Contemporary Latvia. 2016. 192 p. ISBN 978-9949-77-296-4 (print).

This book offers innovative perspectives on the intersections between history and memory in Central and Eastern European borderlands. It focuses on the case of Latgale, the multicultural region of eastern Latvia which borders Russia, Belarus and Lithuania, and explores the multiple layers of memories and historical narratives about this borderland in Latvian public history. Based on a detailed analysis of national and regional museums, as well as material from interviews and an expert survey, the study examines how different actors and projects negotiate the borderland’s complex history and attempt to shape it into meaningful narratives in the present. Moving beyond binary ethnolinguistic approaches of “Latvian” versus “Russian” interpretations of the past, a more nuanced analytical framework is developed that compares state-level constructions of national master-narratives, the uses of history for local region-building, the persistence of Soviet official narratives, and transnational initiatives aimed at transcending the conceptual borders of the nation-state. The reader will find this to be a fascinating study into the little-known case of Latgale and a valuable contribution to the broader research fields of memory politics and borderlands in the post-Soviet space.


Indexing: Web of Science™ Core Collection

ISSN 2228-4451 (print)
ISSN 2228-446X (online)

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