By Michael Herzfeld
Michael Herzfeld describes what occurs whilst a paperwork charged with old conservation clashes with a neighborhood population adverse to the nation and suspicious of tourism. concentrating on the Cretan city of Rethemnos, as soon as a middle of studying lower than Venetian rule and later inhabited by way of the Turks, he examines significant questions confronting conservators and electorate as they negotiate the "ownership" of heritage: Who defines the previous? To whom does the previous belong? what's "traditional" and the way is that this decided? Exploring the meanings of the outfitted surroundings for Rethemnos's population, Herzfeld unearths that their curiosity in it has extra to do with own histories and the rapid social context than with the formal historical past that pulls the conservators. He additionally investigates the population' social practices from the standpoints of family and family members workforce, political organization, local, gender ideology, and the consequences of those on attitudes towards domestic possession. within the face of modernity, the place culture is an item of either reverence and commercialism, Rethemnos emerges as a massive ethnographic window onto the ambiguous cultural fortunes of Greece.
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Additional info for A Place in History: Social and Monumental Time in a Cretan Town (Princeton Studies in Culture, Power, History)
Official Hellenism has already quietly begun, a mere two years after liberation and thirteen years before union with Greece, to tune the often shabby recent past to the neo-Classical sonorities of an irredentist present. The property sale documents give an interesting picture of Muslim Christian relations. The common language seems usu ally to have been Greek. The notaries were of both faiths ; one Muslim, a certain Pertiv Dhervisakis ( "son of the Dervish "), was especially active in sales involv ing his coreligionists .
With the Turk- 20 CHAPTER ONE ish defeat of the Greek armies in 1 922, however, the irredentist vision evaporated in ignominy and recrimination ( see Llewellyn Smith 1 973 ) , and the Treaty o f Lausanne ( 1 923 ) sent a flood o f refugees from Asia Minor into Greece . Rethemnos, a poor and confined space now in com mercial decline, was not attractive to the more ambitious and entrepre neurial of the newcomers, and many of them stayed only briefly. From the beginning of the century to the 1 92 8 census, the population dropped by nearly 3 ,000.
Conservation-in Greek, anapaleosi, literally, "reantiquating"-en capsulates a n d defines t h e forms of tradition and history. From the per spective of residents who have gradually modified their physical envi ronment without making radical changes, it is a shocking destruction of the familiar : not continuity, but radical change . Maurice Halbwachs ( 1 98 0 : 1 3 5 ) , a French social thinker who was himself directly implicated in town planning for the state (see Rabinow 1 9 8 9 ), observed that destruc tion of a town 's physical fabric may generate considerable anxiety, and that after a while the elements of familiar society will reappear, imprinted afresh on the new setting.
A Place in History: Social and Monumental Time in a Cretan Town (Princeton Studies in Culture, Power, History) by Michael Herzfeld