Chernivtsi’s Squares and Monuments in the Context of Distinctive Bukovinian Identity, Cultural Heritages and Urban Historical Memory

15 October 2020


Authors
VALENTYNA BOHATYRETS AND LIUBOV MELNYCHUK
Pages
45-77
Abstract

Since the twentieth century, the interdisciplinary field of ‘memory studies’ has become especially topical and drawn upon a variety of theoretical perspectives, while offering a plethora of empirical case studies exploring the politics of memory and urban space, cultural heritage and cultural identity that mould a space’s distinctiveness. This study draws on a comparative analysis to theoretically prove and develop a multifaceted memory of Chernivtsi’s significantly transformed and enriched urban landscape through an interdisciplinary approach involving various methods and instruments for handling the essential societal resources of history, memory and identity.

The city of Chernivtsi and the region of Bukovina, historically part of Central Eastern Europe and geo-strategically the heart of Europe, has recently strengthened its voice in becoming culturally and economically bound to the European Union. As a well-preserved city ruled, at different times, by the Habsburg Empire (1900-1918), Romania (1918-1939) and the USSR (1940/41-1991), Chernivtsi (Czernowitz, Cernăuţi, Chernovtsy) serves as a case study for exploring the human fingerprints of every epoch. The city’s architectural diversity offers testimony as to how Chernivtsi’s urban society preserved its unique landscape of identity, embodied in a patchwork of ethnic, linguistic and confessional affiliations, while integrating representational claims and moderating its space.

This study analyses the policies and practices of these three epochs in Chernivtsi’s history, in terms of how the city attempted to promote, develop and preserve its cultural heritage, while preserving the collective memory and shaping supranational identity.

Keywords

Bukovinian supranational identity, cultural heritage, urban space, memory studies, Chernivtsi

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[48] In the Soviet period, this church served as an archive.

List of illustrations

Fig. 1. Central Square (1911). Source: http://www.lvivcenter.org.

Fig. 2. Museum of Fine Arts, mosaic on façade, realised in Zsolnay majolica tiles. Source: https://www.alamy.com/stock-photo/ukraine-mosaic.html.

Fig. 3. Town Hall; View of the Square (Ringplatz) (photograph from 1898). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 4. The Pietà monument (photograph from c. 1900). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 5. Monument to the Virgin Mary (photograph from August 6, 1917). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 6. The Pietà at Sedgura Cemetery (photograph from 2008). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 7. Heiliger Kreuz-Platz (photograph from 1898). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 8. The Unirii (Unification) Monument. Source: https://romaniaimaginideierisiazi. wordpress.com/2013/05/03/monumentul-unirii-din-cernauti/.

Fig. 9. The back of the Unification monument.

Fig. 10. Star flowerbed at the foot of the Unification monument (photograph from 1944–1946). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 11. Obelisk bearing the arms of the Soviet Republics, erected on the base of the Unification monument (photograph from 1950). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 12. Monument to Vladimir Lenin, Leader of the Soviet Bolsheviks; inaugurated in 1951 and demolished in 1991 (Central Square). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 13. Elisabethplatz (photograph from between 1907 and 1918). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig.14. Statue of Friedrich Shiller, in front of Chernivtsi Theatre (photograph from 1908). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 15. Beheaded monument to V. Lenin, in front of the Chernivtsi Theatre (photograph by Willy Pragher, 1941). Source: Сергій Воронцов, “Ставити на чорне. Як на Буковині фашизм любили” [Black Hats are Highly Motivated. How Bucovinians Worshiped Fascism],” https://shpalta.media/2019/05/20/staviti-na-chorne-yak-na-bukovini-fashizm-lyubili/].

Fig. 16. Bust of Olha Kobylianska. Source: Сергій Осадчук, Володимир Заполовський, Наталія Шевченко. Пам'ятники Чернівців / Denkmaeler von Czernowitz. Чернівці: Зелена Буковина, 2009.

Fig. 17. Austria Platz and Franz-Josefs Platz on a Map from 1911. Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 18. Monument to Austria (photograph by Anton Kluczenko of circa 1875). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 19. Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, seen from Franz-Josef Platz (photograph from the 1860s). Source: Archival photographic collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 20. Monument to Johann von Nepomuk. Source: Осадчук, Заполовський, Шевченко. Пам'ятники Чернівців / Denkmaeler von Czernowitz..

Fig. 21. Monument to Empress Elizabeth, Franz-Josef Platz (photograph from 1911-1918). Source: Archival photograph collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 22. Bust of Mihai Eminescu in Grădina Arboroasa. Source: Archive photograph collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 23. Bust of Romanian Prime Minister Ion I. C. Brătianu in Grădina Arboroasa. Source: Archive photograph collection of Edward Turkiewicz.

Fig. 24. Obelisk of Victory, erected by the Soviets in 1946 on the site of an unfinished monument to an Unknown Soldier. Source: “Докієн Олександр, 6 фактів про монумент Перемоги у Чернівцях” [6 Facts About the Monument of Victory in Chernivtsi], https://shpalta.media/2019/05/09/6-faktiv-pro-monument-peremogi-u-chernivcyax/.

Fig. 25. Plan of Czernowitz, Ludwig West Map, 1896, dating from the Austrian epoch (1775-1918). Source: City Archival stock document.

Fig. 26. Plan of Cernăuţi, Ion Onciul Map, 1930, from the Romanian epoch (1918-1940). Source: City Archival stock document.

Fig. 27. The current official map of the city of Chernivtsi. Source: Організація Національної спілки архітекторів України в Чернівецькій області [Organization of the National Branch of Architects of Ukraine in the Chernivtsi Region], https://www.facebook.com/archibuk.org/photos/pcb.1560623314202414/1560622934202452/.