The elements of colonial relationships were easily adapted to address the border between Western and Eastern Europe
In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, representations of Poland and the Slavic East cast the region as a primitive, undeveloped, or empty space inhabited by a population destined to remain uncivilized without the aid of external intervention. These depictions often made direct reference to the American Wild West, portraying the eastern steppes as a boundless plain that needed to be wrested from the hands of unruly natives and spatially ordered into German-administrated units.
While conventional definitions locate colonial space overseas, Kristin Kopp argues that it was possible to understand both distant continents and adjacent Eastern Europe as parts of the same global periphery dependent upon Western European civilizing efforts. However, proximity to the source of aid translated to greater benefits for Eastern Europe than for more distant regions.
Jacket image: The "negative" model of German space. A. Hillen Ziegfeld, "Die Bedrohung des deutschen Ostens und Südens," in Volk und Reich (1926), 435.
"By focusing on what Kopp calls the 'colonialization' of the East, this book adds an essential piece to our understanding of German colonial ideology. This is important both for scholars of German culture and scholars of imperialism more broadly."
—Andrew Zimmerman, George Washington University
"An especially attractive and successful strategy employed by the author as she moves chapter by chapter is to have the focus shift between different kinds of sources, including the genre of 'Eastern Marches novels,' traditions in cartography traced in precise examples, and cinema. This gives compelling evidence of changes in the discourse she is tracking."
—Vejas Liulevicius, University of Tennessee