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Cultural Exclusion and Frontier Zones

Rivista di Estetica (1/2018)

Advisory Editors

Alexander Chertenko (Research Center for Cultural Exclusion and Borderland Areas, Russia)

Janna Nikolaeva (Saint-Petersburg State University)

Sergey Troitćkii (Saint-Petersburg State University)

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Deadline for submission

January 30th, 2017


Every cultural memory has two sides. On the one hand, it implies the formation of memory zones which accumulate our knowledge of the past. On the other hand, those memorial zones are always accompanied by the emergence of suppression zones covering the experiences and phenomena which were excluded, for some reason or another, from conventional cultural practices. The scope of excluded phenomena is as broad as possible and reaches from inconvenient events, works of art, historical or cultural figures to certain forms of expression, gestures, emotions, material objects, attitudes, discourse frameworks and narration patterns. Although excluded, those phenomena can hardly ever be forgotten. Being repressed as they are, they still influence the drawing of cultural borderlines and the processes of identity construction. We designate such zones as cultural exclusion zones (the term of Sergey Troitćkii referring to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone). Created by dominant ideology, they are a constant challenge to philosophy, literature and the arts, inciting them to re-actualize deliberately marginalized cultural phenomena, to overcome oblivion and, eventually, to deconstruct and to eradicate cultural exclusion zones themselves. An investigation of mechanisms of cultural interaction underlying these processes remains an important issue, as construction and deconstruction of cultural exclusion zones is still taking place nowadays.

Though topographical explorations of national culture, including various approaches to study of geographical borders and, specifically, theories of “cultural borders”, are not anymore uncommon in the field of the humanities, borderlines are nevertheless frequently regarded as a characteristic of a territory.

2) There is: Instead, we want to place special emphasis on the multifold influence of borderline phenomena and experiences upon the contents of culture, thereby considering the interaction of cultures not only in form of frontier zones, i.e. imbrications of elements of two and more interacting cultures, but also in terms of exclusion zones, i. e. areas of cultural suppression which enfold the elements envisaged as questionable or undesirable by the interplaying cultures.

The objective of this issue of Rivista di Estetica is thus to discover and to describe cultural exclusion zones and the mechanisms of their formation in different cultural contexts.

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