Unsettled Landscapes: Traumatic Memory in a Croatian Hinterland
Space and Polity
Taylor & Francis
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Sternberg, M., & Fyfe, J. (2019). Unsettled Landscapes: Traumatic Memory in a Croatian Hinterland. Space and Polity, 23 (3), 299-318. https://doi.org/10.1080/13562576.2019.1695113
This paper examines the role of landscape in the local experiences of traumatic events in a rural hinterland of the Croatian-Serbian border. We study how landscape sets conditions and affords particular opportunities for local memory practices in response to traumatic events in a former clover field in the village of Lovas in Croatia. Like urban environments rural areas may be physically scarred by conflict, yet the effects are often less explicit, particularly to the external gaze. Like cities, rural landscapes may be ‘wounded’ and remain unsettled as sites of trauma. Landscape presents a significant medium and lens through which to study how hinterland communities cope with the legacies of violence. Often ordinary people and local communities are subject to state-led memorialisation that tends to perpetuate conflict. However, under particular circumstances local actors may also harbour the distinct potential of landscape to enact the work of memory in closer correspondence to their needs. Recent scholarship has revealed the importance of place in the memory culture and politics of traumatised communities in urban borderlands. We argue that landscape settings in the hinterland of state borders play no less significant a role in mediating the complex dynamics of conflict and its aftermath for local commemorative practice.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13562576.2019.1695113
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/300194