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Henadz Sahanovich. Tannenberg / Grunwald / Dubroŭna 1410: Symbolization of the Battle

The construction of the image of the battle of Tannenberg in Belarus starting with its inclusion into the national narrative in 1910 and up today is the subject of this article. Whereas in Soviet time this event played a totally marginal role in histori­cal literature, today it has penetrated into mass historical con­sciousness mainly due to the efforts of writers and popularizers. Paradoxically, however, that political emancipation of Belaru­sian historiography after the disintegration of the Soviet Union did not weaken the tendency to hyperbolize the significance of Grunwald and to borrow pan-Slavism rhetoric. The 2000 analysis of Belarusian publications evidences that the present-day image of Tannenberg is added to the antiquated myth about Slavic vic­tory over the German „Drang nach Osten”. Such understanding of Tannenberg contents both communists and nationalists and especially the adherents of today’s Belarusian government who support the present-day pan-Slavism and confronts the West.