South Tyrol: Identity and Spaces

By: Starla Coffee '15

Advising Faculty: Robert Proctor

Although some scholars claim that the people of South Tyrol now maintain peaceful relations, the society remains divided. This paper demonstrates how South Tyrol’s architecture and urban landscape have come to reflect historical tensions between linguistic groups and stand as symbols of divided cultural memories in the region today.

Efforts have been made to decrease social strains in South Tyrol and to create a unified regional identity by “neutralizing” contested spaces in the region. This paper deconstructs these efforts to “neutralize" contested spaces and to rework cultural memory and reveals the issues associated with attempting to establish social unity while simultaneously avoiding a full confrontation of historical controversy.

This paper emphasizes the fact that social tensions can only be eased naturally with time and through an honest confrontation of the past.

This honors thesis may be read in its entirety at Digital Commons @ Connecticut College.

Related Fields: Italian Studies