Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences



Committee Chair

Robert Blobaum

Committee Co-Chair

Katherine Aaslestad

Committee Member

Joshua Arthurs


In its theoretical framework this thesis relies on the discussion of the existing approaches towards the study of nationalism such as the perennialist, the modernist/constructivist and the ethno-symbolist. The ethno-symbolist approach by Anthony D. Smith, however, is chosen as the most appropriate for examining Belarus's nation-building process and therefore, its ability to explain different expressions of Belarus's national narratives is emphasized. The empirical discussion of Belarus's post-independence nation-building process explains the peculiarity of the Belarusian case in which the official national narrative coexists with the alternative national narrative in Belarus's public sphere. The research question, however, is centered on the problem of the Belarus's national narrative - as it is outlined in Belarus's history textbooks - and its representation of Lithuania with regard to the medieval past of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, which is shared by the both modern republics of Belarus and Lithuania.;With the analysis of Belarus's national narratives and history textbooks as a case study, the thesis responds to concerns of some Lithuanian historians and answers the question whether Belarus's national narrative and the representation of Lithuania presented in the textbooks are contesting and "rewriting" the Lithuanian past, particularly in terms of Lithuanian input in the creation and maintenance of the Grand Duchy from the mid-thirteenth century until the late eighteenth century. The aforementioned research provides an unprecedented analysis of Belarus's history textbooks in regard to their representation of another national group during the particular period of a shared medieval past.