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Author: Subject: Jacobs, Fabian and Lutz Laschewski: On this side and on the other Side of the Island. On the Spatial Constitution of Sorbian...
mersiowsky
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[*] posted on 7-6-2018 at 02:15 PM
Jacobs, Fabian and Lutz Laschewski: On this side and on the other Side of the Island. On the Spatial Constitution of Sorbian Culture


Lětopis Abstract 2018 1: Jacobs, Fabian and Lutz Laschewski: On this side and on the other Side of the Island. On the Spatial Constitution of Sorbian Culture

An attempt is made in this article to sketch out an understanding of culture, which enables us on the one hand to develop a spatial perspective and on the other hand to understand cultural identity as a dynamic phenomenon. Such understanding provides us with a starting point to understand the change in Sorbian contemporary culture in modern society and at the same time to formulate guidelines for action in relation to cultural praxis (the work and politics of identity). Culture derives from giving meaning to a linkage of social events occurring in a chronological sequence, according to our theoretical reflections on a dynamic understanding of culture. As a result of placing and structuring such locally connected events the cultural space is constituted as a space of social relationships. Paul Nedo in his study of 1965 examined the origins of the construct of a Sorbian “ethnic island” and considered its usefulness when placed against the background of social change. This island mentality determines to this day the public discourse surrounding the Brandenburg Sorbian/Wendish Law and the Saxon Sorbian Law, which becomes clear especially in relation to their understanding of spatial and cultural concepts. Our study illustrates this theoretical perspective using three characteristic phenomena.

It is argued in the discussion that the dynamic perspective outlined offers an opportunity to grasp and understand the change in Sorbian culture, as both the cognitive elements of culture and the institutional, material conditions, as well as the relationship between individual praxis and the collective, can be considered. This may also make it possible to treat the need for cultural security, not only symbolically, but also to translate it into effective strategies for action.

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