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  • Open Access Estonian
    Authors: 
    Arutyunyan, David;
    Country: Estonia

    The aim of this thesis is to investigate Estonian history textbooks published in the Republic of Estonia in Estonian as well as in Russian languages and used in the gymnasium during the period from 1991-2012. The thesis is focused on the following landmarks in the history of Estonia: The World War II, the Stalin's repressions, the time under the Soviet rule, the collapse of the Soviet union and the sovereignty of Estonia stemming from it. It is these periods and landmarks which may originate different theoretical interpretations of history in terms of the framework of Estonian Republic. Estonian as well as Russian textbooks of history for gymnasium can serve as sources and media for interpretations. Topicality and actual value of the thesis today is certain and evident owing to the reasons. Since it is perfectly possible to influence and shape the worldviews and perspectives of a personality especially during one's reaching the age of puberty. History textbooks or as in the case Estonian textbooks on history in particular are the means enabling to create certain viewpoints and perspectives. School plays the role of institution with its curricula realizing the mentioned function. The young among the local Estonians as well as Russian-speaking minorities may have different perspectives and viewpoints. Besides that, the Estonian textbooks used do not necessarily reflect the historical facts the same way, neither give similar understanding of the same landmarks of significance. Given the mentioned assumptions it is important to learn whether the history textbooks published in this particular time lapse in Estonia have possibly influenced in certain way and shaped different understandings of the past events or on the contrary, suggest the same identical worldview and perspective or imply several alternative possible interpretations. There have been made certain conclusions with the help of analysis made on the basis of comparisons and juxtaposing. The conclusions found are that Estonian textbooks can shape and create different viewpoints being in stark contrast with one another. There are differences between the Estonians textbooks written in Russian and Estonian as well as numerous differences between the textbooks written in Estonian. It is worth mentioning that the difference between the textbooks written in Russian language are negligible and minor.

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