2011

Here are details of the papers given at the 2011 conference.

Approaching Ottoman Heritage in Greece.

Elizabeth Cohen, Cambridge University. esc35@cam.ac.uk

The Ottoman occupation of Greece (c.15 – 19th century) left tangible impressions on the built landscape in the form of mosques, imarets, barracks, cemeteries, etc. Although Greek legislation protects all its cultural heritage (Law 3028/2002), not all periods and groups are equally represented. Ottoman heritage, for example, is largely absent or neglected (Llewellyn – Smith, 2004; Bintliff, 2007) while for Philliou it is present but not perceived (Philliou, 2008). That there has been no thorough registration of Ottoman monuments (Katenaki, 2005) causes a preservation issue that can only be remedied when all post-Byzantine monuments are recorded. Whilst much has changed in the last 30 years, archaeological revision of this area is still limited and much Ottoman heritage still remains destroyed, under protected or under conserved (Bintliff, 2007). I want to understand how a selective version of Greece’s past has emerged in the heritage record, with a focus on how the Ottoman heritage virtually disappeared from the cultural landscape and why and in what ways it is reemerging. But in order to grapple this task, I need to ascertain just what sort of heritage this is. Is it a shared heritage or a post-colonial heritage? Both? Or neither? Using the Tzistarakis Mosque in Athens as a case study, I will attempt to determine just whose contested heritage this is and why it matters.

The Spanish-Cuban-American War (1895-98): the potential for archaeology in an almost forgotten ‘modern’ conflict

Alberto P. Martí. apm34@alumni.leicester.ac.uk

The war for Cuban independence, which began as the latest attempt in a series of insurgency movements against the Spanish rule, led to a major international conflict between Spain and the United States in 1898. In the end, after less than four months of open hostilities, Spain accepted the loss of the majority of its remaining overseas colonies in the Caribbean, South-eastern Asia and the Pacific. The so-called ‘Disaster of the 98’ became the starting point for a U.S. foreign policy that has shaped the military and political history of the 20th century. Surprisingly, it has not been until quite recently that archaeologists have slowly started to explore this crucial conflict through its spaces and material remains. The potential for this approach looks really promising, as it might offer new insights into modern phenomena such as the precocious use of (re)concentration camps or the expression of contested memories related to ‘humanitarian’ interventions. In this paper I will review the state-of-the-art and identify some possible directions for the future archaeological research in this area.

Spooky spectres or sacred symbolism: conflicting interpretations of the Hell-Fire Caves

Aisling Tierney, University of Bristol

The Hell-Fire Caves at West Wycombe are the source of much modern-day speculation. Built under the direction of Sir Francis Dashwood in the mid 18th century, their original purpose is clouded in mystery. From the 1950s, a descendent of Dashwood opened the cave system as a tourist attraction and began altering its features for both safety and amusement. Today, the caves are the site of a bustling family tourist trade, complete with café and kitschy merchandise. The owners regale the visitor with tales of hauntings and the paranormal. Children are invited to join the School of Witchcraft for courtyard games, face painting, and spooky fancy dress competitions. It is not only tourists who visit the site, however. The cave complex has become an important spiritual Mecca for many followers of modern occult and alternative religions. Their interpretations range from readings of secret symbols to associations with Satanism. This paper will analyse the conflicting interpretations presented by the caves’ owners and that of one particular spiritual group. A further contrasting assessment, from an archaeological perspective, will be presented in order to show how the physicality of the cave complex has been reinterpreted to suit the needs of each group.

Kaiser Bill, Asterix and The Mad Brute – the Pickelhaube as a cultural symbol

Martin Brown, University of Bristol

From British Sign Language to Asterix via the mantelpieces of Great War veterans the Pickelhaube helmet has become inextricably associated with Prussian militarism and the German Army of the Great War. While the helmet became the signifier of a barbaric enemy for the allied propagandists, it remained part of the German military panoply, even after its utility ceased on the battlefield. Today the helmet retains its value as widely recognised trope of an imagined Germanitas but it has also been subverted in popular culture, everywhere from outer space to the top shelf, via the heads of family pets. Nevertheless, the pickelhaube remains a potent military symbol, still seen on the parade ground as a symbol of power and prowess. This paper will examine the mutability of the pickelhaube as symbol and examine the contested and sometimes comic nature of the artefact, exploring the value placed on it during the conflict and in more recent times.

Picturing War: A recently discovered diary from the First World War

Matt Leonard, University of Bristol

Stranded midway between the mass destruction of industrialised war and the personal struggle for survival are the uniquely mediating objects of conflict that are the pocketbooks, sketchbooks, and diaries kept by those who fought in the trenches.  These intimate objects communicate to us, often in everyday language, the mental and physical landscapes in which the soldiers lived, fought, were wounded, and sometimes died. This paper investigates the diary written by William Albert Muggeridge, who served in France and the Middle East as a Rifleman. During this time, he kept a pocketbook, and filled it with drawings and pictures representing the worlds he encountered. This object survives today, despite the fact that all other records of his military service have long since disappeared. Muggeridge’s illustrated diary communicates his identity and memory, as a pen-and-ink memorial to the man, and the fallen.

The Post-Conflict Response of the Republic of Korea (South Korea) to the built heritage of the Japanese Occupation

HyunKyung Lee, University of Cambridge

This paper aims to explore the relationship between the built heritage and the formation of national identity through architecture dating to the period of the Japanese Occupation in South Korea. I will focus on the post-conflict response of South Korea to the built heritage of the Japanese Occupation, and will also look at the conflicts between Korean tradition and Japanese modernisation that are apparent by the changes in the built heritage. Moreover, I will investigate the changes of perception and treatment of the built heritage by South Koreans throughout different political presidencies starting from the Liberation (1945) to the present. Four case studies will be examined to see the current use and the style of the commemorative events influenced by South Koreans in the present. Even though the impact of trauma on built heritage have been theorized by, among others, Bevan (2006), and Foote (1997), these relate only to European and American contexts. Due to significant changes in the treatment of heritage sites during different periods of presidency, these models cannot adequately describe the Korean situation. As a result, I will propose a model that describes the impact of occupation on built heritage, which is tailored to the Korean situation.

Tales from the Broken City:  redefining the meaning of home during the bombing of British cities

James Greenhalgh, University of Manchester. james.greenhalgh-2@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

The house as home has been conceptualised as the haven of safety and controlled space in the urban environment. Situated in a familiar neighbourhood, its importance as a defensible delineated area- crucial in the process of locating ourselves in space, creating place and as a psychological touchstone where we retreat from the world- has been stressed by many writers. However, as cities were reframed as landscapes of fear during the bombing campaigns of the Second World War, the intersection of the meanings of home with destruction and death also brought into focus the relationships of individuals with the home and city. As historians and archaeologists this interplay between the physical and conceptual is essential to our understanding of the past. Consequently, this paper deals with the manner in which ideas of home were altered by the effects of bombing and looks at the process by which this occurred. Crucial to this is the idea of the home in mid-twentieth century Britain and I argue that whilst the Blitz was an act of physical destruction, which brought with it concerns about shelter, possessions and physical harm, bombing also transgressed conceptual boundaries of the home, altering the relationship of the individuals to their homes.

On Conflict, Cacti and Material Culture: an Archaeological Anthropology of the Chaco War and its Aftermath

Esther Breithoff, University of Bristol. esther.breithoff@hotmail.co.uk

The Gran Chaco is a vast and under populated, semi-arid, lowland plain in South America. From 1932-1935, it also was the setting for the bloodiest and one of the most obscure wars in twentieth century South America. The Chaco War was a tragedy for the indigenous peoples of the area, and beyond, as they were the proxies of the Hispanic elites who created and prosecuted the conflict. Academic research, however, has primarily focused on the military history of the war, largely neglecting the indigenous experience of this armed conflict. The Mennonites form another group, which has largely been neglected in the history of the Chaco War. They are an evangelical free church that originated in the Low Countries of northern Europe during the sixteenth-century Reformation era. Persecution and restriction of religious freedom continuously forced them to emigrate, and in 1927 the first group of Mennonites arrived in Paraguay with the hope of starting a new life in the Chaco wilderness, where they established both relationships with the soldiers and the indigenous people. The Mennonite introduction of agriculture and western Christian values, and the arrival of industrialised warfare with the Bolivian and Paraguayan armies, imposed themselves onto a predominantly hunter-gatherer landscape, resulting in a fusion of three completely different worlds amidst the Chaco’s thorny shrubs and arid plains. This paper is an attempt to identify new landscapes and objects generated by the destructive force of modern warfare, to locate their archaeological remains, and to analyze their altered meanings in the context of material culture anthropology.

Desert Fort – Archaeology of the French Foreign Legion

Capt R P Jeynes BA, MA, FRGS

The French colonial operations in Morocco during the early twentieth century were relatively unknown by many in France, or anywhere else in the world. The Great War overshadowed the whole operation whilst the use of foreign troops in the twenties and thirties kept campaigns from this period out of public attention. The campaigns were hard fought and the fighting between the French occupation forces and the Berber tribes was particularly fierce. The French constructed many forts and smaller outposts in an attempt to dominate large areas of terrain. Most were eventually abandoned and destroyed by the French army or overrun and destroyed by the Berber. A few forts that did survive were taken into use by the Moroccan army, converted into hotels and cafes or used as “quarries” for building material by local farmers. As such there remains very little evidence in the archaeological record of these important structures. The proposed presentation will report on the results of a recent expedition (March 2011) to locate and study the remains of one fort, and associated outposts, located in SE Morocco.

Dragon’s Teeth: The Archaeology of Second World War Anti-invasion Defences in Wales

Jon Berry, University of Birmingham. jonathan.berry@wales.gsi.gov.uk / jab743@bham.ac.uk

The preparation of defences against a possible German invasion profoundly affected the landscape of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. A wide range of defensive structures were built and the majority subsequently demolished. As part of ongoing research into the anti-invasion defences of Wales, this paper addresses the establishment of the chronology, location, type and extent of the defences constructed at a national scale, with a view to identifying useful areas to be used as case studies. Confronted by a virtual absence of published information, the researcher has applied a methodology that combines traditional archaeological approaches with historical documentary sources, including archived aerial photography and military war diaries. This paper will focus on progress achieved. Research to date has focused on the undertaking of an archaeological desk-based assessment to gain information about the known or potential archaeological military defence resource within Wales. The appropriateness of utilising an archaeological approach to research the recent past will be examined. The merits of employing a cross-disciplinary and complementary approach will be discussed. A landscape scale of analysis rather than a site-specific approach is advocated. An overview of deep archival research at The National Archives will be presented.

‘Enverism Nostalgia’ or Albanian Cultural Heritage Icon: Conflicting Perceptions of Tirana’s Pyramid

Emily Glass. University of Bristol

The Tirana Pyramid was built in 1987 in the centre of Albania’s capital city. It measures 11,000 sq metres in size and was constructed of concrete with marble cladding as a memorial to the deceased dictator Enver Hoxha (1908-1985). It housed a propaganda-based museum dedicated to the former leader. After the fall of communism in 1991 it became, variously, a cultural centre for the arts, a venue for trade fairs, a nightclub, and a TV/Radio station. However, since 2008 it has been allowed to descend into a living ruin by being stripped of its marble and left to become an eyesore, particularly since the partially completed restoration works were shelved in 2009.

Since its construction, the Pyramid has evolved into a symbolic urban landscape feature, whose meaning has morphed alongside the contemporary Albanian psyche. Unfortunately not all recent events at the Pyramid have been constructive. In January 2011 the Pyramid became the focus of renewed protest after four civilians were shot dead by the National Guard during anti-government demonstrations.  These events returned the Pyramid to its original role as a memorial space and place of remembrance, in this case for those killed and injured during the violence.

In late 2010, the Albanian government announced that the pyramid was to be demolished, citing the need for a new Parliament building. These plans have met with strong resistance from the UN, opposition parties, architects, the general public and the ‘Protect the Pyramid’ protest group, all of whom have been dismissed by the current Prime Minister as guilty of ‘Enverism Nostalgia’.

This paper will explore how, after the fall of communism, the Pyramid has been appropriated by a wider society and infused with new meanings, values and memories. It will also discuss what the dynamic interrelations of public and political perceptions of this structure can signify for its future preservation.

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