It is the peculiarity of the Holy Roman Empire that, due to its central European position, it was at war with Western powers on the one hand and with the Ottoman Empire on the other. Thus, depending on the front, very different rules applied with regard to the treatment of ... (Show more)
It is the peculiarity of the Holy Roman Empire that, due to its central European position, it was at war with Western powers on the one hand and with the Ottoman Empire on the other. Thus, depending on the front, very different rules applied with regard to the treatment of prisoners of war.
First of all, the lecture aims to illuminate the different initial conditions that arose in the West as well as in the South-East of the Empire for prisoners of war in the early modern period from the end of the 17th century onwards, since soldiers of the troops of the "Most-Christian King" on the one hand or of the "Turkish Great Lord" on the other were taken prisoner and thus subjected to certain forms of a logic and discourse of ransom and / or forced labour. However, it becomes apparent that the dichotomy between prisoners of war from the Islamic world here and from the Christian world there falls short. Rather, forms of exploitation that always arose from economic or utilitarian points of view must also be taken into account.
As a second point, we have to focus on the fact, that in the Holy Roman Empire of the 18th century, there was a harsh persecution and strict coercive labour for vagrants, which could also mean forced labour for women and children. Especially in times of war, the various scenarios of violence allowed harsh enforcement of forced labour or forced recruitment when this seemed necessary. Therefore, we can find cases, where the transgression of boundaries in the application of forced labour can be found for women and children. Since this lead sometimes to discussions, we can trace these developments. Finally, we will end with having a focus on the transfer of those affected and caught in a network of human trafficking in the Holy Roman Empire.
Thus, this contribution will not only examine the phenomena as such, but also their contexts of justification in a transcultural perspective, in order to understand which forms of coercion were used, which alternatives to forced labour existed, but especially how gender, age but also the transfer of persons played a role in this context. (Show less)