[spectre] CFP: War, Revolution and Memory: Post-War Monuments in Post-Communist Europe (Zagreb, 17-18 Feb 17)
ab at mikro.in-berlin.de
Fri Oct 7 09:20:01 CEST 2016
From: Jelica Jovanovic <jelicajovanovic011 at gmail.com>
Date: Oct 6, 2016
Subject: CFP: War, Revolution and Memory (Zagreb, 17-18 Feb 17)
Zagreb, February 17 - 18, 2017
Deadline: Nov 1, 2016
War, Revolution and Memory: Post-War Monuments in Post-Communist Europe
World War II caused a collective trauma in the memory of Europeans,
which resulted in the erection of countless monuments all over Europe to
commemorate the events and battles as well as the civilian and military
victims. In the period of almost 45 years, numerous memorial sites were
created in the Communist Europe. Contrary to the dominant belief that
the monuments in the Eastern Bloc and Non-aligned Yugoslavia were
created exclusively in the spirit of Socialist Realism and erected by
order of state authorities, typologically and stylistically these
monuments form a heterogeneous group, and were erected both by the state
and the local communities.
Since their creation, and due to the fact that they were conceived as
"intentional monuments" (in the sense of Riegl's gewollte Denkmale), a
number of governmental regulations have been adopted in order to ensure
that this heritage is adequately protected and maintained.
The decline of Communism and the introduction of the market economy and
multi-party system in the newly emerged countries resulted in multiple
effects, both on the institutional and symbolic level. On the
institutional and legislative level, it brought significant changes
within the legal framework, functioning of institutions and civil
services of the post-socialist countries. On the symbolic level this led
to rejection of the bearers of symbolic capital of the former system.
Therefore, the perception of monuments created in the period of Real
Socialism to commemorate World War II was rapidly changing, and the
meaning they conveyed, as well as their memorial and aesthetic value
were being questioned, challenged and/or denied. Often violent, break
with the former regime resulted in their relocation, temporary or
permanent removal from the public space and vandalism or destruction.
Norbert Huse tried to define these phenomena by devising the category of
uncomfortable architectural monuments (unbequeme Baudenkmale).
Twenty-seven years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, we are still
witnessing the denial, destruction and marginalization of these
monuments as unacceptable, unsightly, totalitarian, etc.
The attempts to reevaluate this heritage, as well as to develop
different strategies of its public presentation, differ from state to
state, and the criteria and guidelines that should be used to devise a
"new" perception, followed by the management and maintenance of the
denied monuments, mainly depend on the political and economic situation
in different countries.
Taking into account the scope of this heritage, the efforts invested in
rediscovery, protection and conservation treatment of memorials require
significant funds. But before raising the question of funding, one
should ask if and for whom this disputed heritage should be restored? In
what ways did the change of political paradigm make these monuments
undesirable in the post-socialist countries? Have processes of denial
and suppression contributed to the cancellation of an inherent
ideological charge of these monuments? If so, are we allowed to treat
them exclusively as aesthetic objects, particularly when they are
preserved in fragments? Should these monuments, as relics of a forgotten
past, be seen as a part of the tourism industry? Could the damaged or
destroyed artifacts be restored to their original state or should the
conservation treatment also commemorate the period of denial and
suppression? What is the role of heritage communities in relation to
survival and revival of this heritage?
These questions will be discussed at an international conference in the
- MONUMENT PROTECTION AND TRANSITION – preservation of World War II
monuments in the former Eastern Bloc and Yugoslavia and the impact of
recent political history on the reception of monuments (revaluation
processes, historical revisionism and perception, memorial and aesthetic
- PRACTICE OF PROTECTION AND CHANGES TO THE LEGAL AND INSTITUTIONAL
FRAMEWORK – Legislative changes and their impact on the issues of
jurisdiction and management, ownership, etc. (role of management in the
processes of rediscovery, research and conservation)
- EXAMPLES OF MANAGEMENT – the models of managing monuments and memorial
complexes, good and bad practices, socialist heritage and tourism
- CONSERVATION – the problems of maintenance, interpretation and
representation of World War II monuments, use of traditional
methodologies within a changed system of values.
The conference is organised by NGO SF:ius – Social Fringe: interesting
untold stories in cooperation with ICOMOS Croatia as a part of the
international project INAPPROPRIATE MONUMENTS.
Project INAPPROPRIATE MONUMENTS is supported by European Cultural
Foundation (ECF) and Swiss Government trough the Swiss Agency for
Development and Cooperation (SDC).
The official language of the conference is English.
The conference organizers will subsidize the cost of accommodation for
Please submit 500-word abstracts and a short bio (in English) to
sfius at sfius.org by November 1st 2016. The successful participants will
be notified by November 15th.
Reference / Quellennachweis:
CFP: War, Revolution and Memory (Zagreb, 17-18 Feb 17). In: H-ArtHist,
Oct 6, 2016. <http://arthist.net/archive/13886>.
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