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Chronicles in StonePreservation, Patriotism, and Identity in Northwest Russia$
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Victoria Donovan

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781501747878

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501747878.001.0001

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“Every Centimeter of this Ground is History”

“Every Centimeter of this Ground is History”

Heritage, Narrative, and Identity

(p.155) 6. “Every Centimeter of this Ground is History”
Chronicles in Stone

Victoria Donovan

Cornell University Press

This chapter draws on oral testimony and participant observation work conducted in the 2000s and 2010s to explore how Soviet and Russian patriotic discourses rooted in the heritage landscape were internalized by communities living in the historic towns. It focuses on the different oral modes employed by residents to speak about local heritage: the routinized discourse of kraevedenie lectures and touristic excursions and the more intimate language associated with memories of childhood, family festivities, and domestic traditions. The chapter examines the human consequences of the shifts in heritage politics that followed the collapse of communist rule. According to its findings, the experience of living among architectural monuments gave rise to proprietorial feelings about heritage. This provoked a range of emotions, from pride to frustration, and even melancholy in connection with the contemporary fate of these buildings.

Keywords:   patriotic discourses, historic towns, heritage landscape, local heritage, oral testimony, heritage politics, architectural monuments

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