Exploring the public perception of Communist Heritage in Post-communist Albania

Fig.1This paper focuses on a case study from contemporary Albania and represents one of the first attempts at addressing the social significance of the remnants of the recent communist past in this country. Our results suggest that there is a considerable widely shared interest in the material remains of the past regime and that this cultural heritage cannot be easily reduced to its sole traumatic elements.

Abstract

More than a quarter of a century after the fall of the eastern bloc (broadly intended), former communist countries have dramatically changed. Yet the memory of the recent communist past is sometimes perceived as being accompanied by a considerable sense of unease. This process is mirrored clearly in the way some countries have dealt with the physical remains of the regime. This paper will focus on a case study from contemporary Albania and represents one of the first attempts at addressing the social significance of the remnants of the recent communist past in this country. It is undertaken not only through a theoretical and historical investigation, but also via a direct survey of the public (in this case a sample of citizens of the capital city Tirana). Our results suggest that, contrary to our initial assumptions, there is a considerable widely shared interest in the material remains of the past regime and that this cultural heritage cannot be easily reduced to its sole traumatic elements.

Francesco Iacono,  Klejd L. Këlliçi

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