The aim of the project is to investigate the mechanisms of Estonia’s modern identity in its historical development within the context of the two poles of cultural autogenesis and transfer. The theoretical background for the research can be found in the theory of cultural transfer, in postcolonial studies and in the theories dealing with the problems of belated/accelerated modernization of smaller national cultures. The task is to demonstrate that the roots of Estonian national identity are also to be found in transfers from different ethnic, linguistic and geographical “other” communities: in the Baltic German culture, in the global Estonia in exile, in the Soviet imperial culture etc. A topic all its own consists of transfers between different spheres of art. The key issues will include the reversibility of a cultural original and its copy, the transition of colonial cultures into national cultures, cultural memory, modern/postmodern Europe and the reception of it in Estonia.


Principal investigator

  • Jaan Undusk


Senior research staff

  • Mirjam Hinrikus, PhD
  • Piret Kruuspere, MA
  • Eneken Laanes, PhD
  • Liina Lukas, PhD
  • Anneli Mihkelev, PhD
  • Aare Pilv, MA
  • Ulrike Plath, PhD
  • Rein Undusk, MA


Other research staff

  • Eva-Liisa Linder
  • Vahur Aabrams
  • Riina Oruaas, MA
  • Kairit Kaur
  • Regina-Nino Kurg
  • Helen Kurss