László Mika is a Doctoral Fellow at the Global Intellectual History Graduate School (run jointly by the Freie Universität Berlin and the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin), as well as a Doctoral Fellow at the Southeast European History Department at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. He holds two bachelor’s degrees, in International Media and Communications from the Budapest Business University (Hungary) and in History from the Eötvös Loránd University (Hungary). During his undergraduate studies, László worked as a cultural journalist for various Hungarian magazines, and volunteered at the Erasmus Student Network, mentoring incoming Erasmus+ students. He also spent a semester studying International Relations and Affairs at the Hogeschool Utrecht (The Netherlands). He earned a master’s double degree in the European History Program, from the Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata” (Italy) and the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, as the recipient of the stipendium “Study in Italy” from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MAECI). His research interest lies mainly in transnational / regional cultural identities in the Habsburg Central European space, his MA Thesis tackling the complexities of early Tyrolean regional patriotism during the Napoleonic Wars through the diaries of Anton Knoflach.
A Monumental Attempt at Imperial Canon-Building and Transregional Idea Diffusion in the Age of Nationalism: The Production History of the Kronprinzenwerk in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, 1883-1903
In his doctoral research project, László examines the encyclopedic work of Die österreichisch-ungarische Monarchie in Wort und Bild / Az Osztrák-Magyar Monarchia Írásban és Képben (commonly known as the “Kronprinzenwerk” after the main sponsor and intellectual engine behind the project, the Habsburg Crown Prince Rudolf). This cultural attempt at constructing and spreading a joint imperial canon of accepted knowledge in the Monarchy was produced in two languages, German and Hungarian, in 24 and 21 volumes respectively, synthesizing decades of scholarly activity on the whole of the Habsburg Central European space in anthropology, history, folklore and the natural sciences. The project explores the production history of the work, looking at how the two editorial committees in Vienna and Budapest decided on the contributors for certain volumes and articles, how the agency as cultural mediators of the authors and illustrators influenced the finished product and the reasons for differences between the two versions. Through this, the project aims to place the Kronprinzenwerk not just in the cultural history of post-Enlightenment Europe, but also in the global history of encyclopedic works and their relationship with ruling classes in empires.