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Publication Detail
Overlapping Nostalgias: Negotiating Space and Labor in the (Post)Communist City of Bucharest
Abstract
© The Author(s) 2019. This article explores infrastructural transformations within communist and postcommunist Bucharest, arguing that they constituted the foundation for divergent discourses of nostalgia. The themes of production and domesticity provide a spatial focus and a framework for the investigation of this phenomenon in relation to workers as an urban social group. In reference to (post)communist Bucharest, I go beyond the spatial and temporal ambiguity that seems to trigger nostalgia, and I suggest its concrete embodiment in the structure and praxes of the city. I propose that under the communist regime, the experience of nostalgia was a way of coming to terms with the abrupt break from precommunist material and symbolic conditions, while the theme of labor became a vehicle for the normalization of those changes. The understanding and praxes of labor in the new condition of the city became a vehicle for nostalgia, and constituted the main reference point in the appropriation of the new urban and symbolic structure.
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