Empty spaces and the value of symbols: Estonia's 'war of monuments' from another angle

Burch, S. ORCID: 0000-0001-8293-1850 and Smith, D.J., 2007. Empty spaces and the value of symbols: Estonia's 'war of monuments' from another angle. Europe-Asia Studies, 59 (6), pp. 913-936. ISSN 0966-8136

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Taking as its point of departure the recent heightened discussion surrounding publicly sited monuments in Estonia, this article investigates the issue from the perspective of the country's eastern border city of Narva, focusing especially upon the restoration in 2000 of a 'Swedish Lion' monument to mark the 300th anniversary of Sweden's victory over Russia at the first Battle of Narva. This commemoration is characterised here as a successful local negotiation of a potentially divisive past, as are subsequent commemorations of the Russian conquest of Narva in 1704. A recent proposal to erect a statue of Peter the Great in the city, however, briefly threatened to open a new front in Estonia's ongoing 'war of monuments'. Through a discussion of these episodes, the article seeks to link the Narva case to broader conceptual issues of identity politics, nationalism and post-communist transition.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Europe-Asia Studies
Creators: Burch, S. and Smith, D.J.
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Place of Publication: Abingdon
Date: 2007
Volume: 59
Number: 6
ISSN: 0966-8136
Divisions: Schools > School of Arts and Humanities
Record created by: EPrints Services
Date Added: 09 Oct 2015 10:37
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2017 13:34
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/15577

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