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The article is dedicated to the analisis of historical landscape of the cities of Transnistria from the standpoint of notions of the regional past. Among the components of historical heritage considered in the article there are monuments erected during the times of Transnistrian Moldovan Republic (TMR), objects of architecture, urban toponymy, museum exhibitions. The process of development of historical memory infrastructure on the events of the end of the 20th century in the de facto republic is revealed. Particularly, the text demonstrates that it is the memory of a brief 1992 war against Moldova that constitutes the core thematic element of Transnistrian historical and cultural landscape referring to the present period. Major concepts that are reflected in building monuments to the war veterans are «grief», «gratitude for peace» (whereas not for Transnistrian «victory» as a conclusion of the conflict could have been interpreted), and «protection» of peace. Consequently, the notion of «the peacemakers», as a part of the Russian military contingent in TMR, assumes special semantic and emotional load. Their mission is simultaneously presented as continuation of the historical aims of Russian Imperial Army and Red Army. Transnistria possesses developed museum infrastructure by which, as well as by urban toponymy, the concepts of historical continuity of that de facto state with Soviet Moldovan statehood are translated. Significance of exploitation of that Soviet symbolic heritage is, by and large, opposition to Romanian national idea under conditions of confrontation with Moldova. Specifics of Transnistria is erection of monuments to the foreign historical figures (for instance, Ivan Mazepa or the Swedish military of Charles XII) who have played any role in the regional history. An example of such use of new monuments as a tool of cultural diplomacy is an attempt to open up a monument to Mazepa in the run-up to 2010 Ukrainian presidential election, later replaced by opening of a set of memorials to more «consensual» Ukrainian historical figures.

About the authors

M. Ya. Medinets

Samara National Research University

Author for correspondence.
Master’s Degree Student, post-graduate student of the Department of Foreign History, International Relations and Records Management


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Copyright (c) 2018 Medinets M.Y.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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