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[From: IN%"email@example.com" "BURKHARD POETTLER" 23-FEB-1994 02:36:46.73 [To: IN%"joberly@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU" [Subj: biographical statement I am, probably, not a 'real' rural historian, as I'm working and teaching at the Institute for European Ethnology at Graz University. Besides, as far as I know 'Rural History' doesn't exist as an own discipline in Austria. As an ethnologist I'm mainly interested in cultural aspects of rural life, nevertheless political and economic aspects are, of course, an important background for my research. My dissertation, finished in 1984, was a micro study on the rural living houses in a part of the district of Styria. The age of the houses examined was from the 17th century up to the begin of WW I. At the moment I'm finishing a study on pilgrimage in the south-east of Styria. This is--up to the present days--a rural area and thus one main aspect of the pilgrimage was (and partly still is) to gain blessing for the fruit. The history of this pilgrimage from 1716 onwards is documented quite well and shows the rivalries between church and domain and the attempts of the local people to improve their situation. Another topic I'm dealing with is the analysis of probate inventories--mainly from the 18th century--as a source for the history of everyday life in rural areas, focussed especially on dwelling culture and agricultural tools and implements. Fortunately, recent database technologies allow an adequate input of highly structured sources and support therefore the combination of qualitative and quantitative approaches. In addition to the interpretation and analysis of the contents of probate inventories these new techniques could be a good tool for the exploration of source critical aspects, by comparing the orthography and the inner structure of the inventories, for instance. Besides, I've done some more practical work, e.g. the conceptualization of the Carinthian Agricultural Museum together with a colleague of mine and a group of students or the participation in three major exhibitions, where I had to deal with rural life in its different aspects. Thanks very much for adding me to the list H-Rural and, please, apologise my 'Germlish'! Burkhard Poettler Institute for European Ethnology Univ. of Graz A-8010 Graz firstname.lastname@example.org