ŞERBAN PAPACOSTEA – MORALITATEA CA FUNDAMENT AL EXCELENŢEI PROFESIONALE
Keywords:Şerban Papacostea; istoriography; debates; communism; postcommunism;
The article examines the relationship between intellectuals and Power, as well as public attitudes towards contemporary issues through the prism of the personality of historian Şerban Papacostea. The historian's personality and public attitudes are analyzed both during the communist regime and after, with the main idea being the continuity of moral and professional attitudes in both political contexts. The refusal to compromise with the communist regime, at the cost of marginalizing the historian in Nicolae Ceauşescu’s academic system in Romania, added a moral component to Şerban Papacostea's scientific work that is as significant as the intellectual component. Therefore, there are no significant differences between Şerban Papacostea’'s public attitudes and scientific concepts during communism and those practiced after its fall. Such an individual trajectory highlights the inconsistency of the thesis of "the necessity of compromise" as a survival strategy during Ceauşescu's totalitarianism. The article also refers to the historian's vision of the role of historians in democratic societies. Şerban Papacostea was a tireless advocate of the historian's duty to understand and explain contemporary phenomena. Such an approach implies the existence of the historian's public attitudes towards what concerns society, which puts the historian, if not necessarily in conflict with Power, at least in contact with it.