The Astakhov Readings is the name of the biennial conference organized by the Department of Historiography, Source Studies, and Archaeology of the Faculty of History at the V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University. The conference centers on the problems of historiography and methodology of history. It bears the name of the Department’s founder, Doctor of Sciences in History, Professor Victor Ivanovych Astakhov.
The first Astakhov Readings took place in 1992. Over the years, the conference has tackled such subjects as the current state of the categorical apparatus of historical scholarship, different approaches to the periodization of the historiographical process, theoretical issues in the writing of biography, problems of employing the methods of science studies in historiography, the ethics of the academic community, the institutionalization of historiography, and others.
The Astakhov Readings have become a fruitful meeting place for historiographers from prominent research centers in Ukraine (Kyiv, Dnipro, Odesa, Kherson) and some other countries. The quality of communication achieved at the Astakhov Readings is allowing us to begin formulating a deliberate goal of establishing a communicative “school” or movement of historiographers, organized around “network connections,” a division of labor, and exchange of scholarship. We are already working in this direction in concert with the Department of Historiography, Source Studies, and Archival Studies of the Oles Honchar Dnipro National University (Chair – Professor O. I. Zhurba). The outlines of the idea are evident in the coordination of conference topics between the Astakhov Readings and the Readings in Memory of Professor M. P. Kovalsky.
The materials of the Astakhov Readings are published in The Kharkiv Historiographical Review (16 issues to date).