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Book review: Anne Nike van Dam on Kristina Jõekalda, et al., Debating German Heritage: Art History and Nationalism during the Long Nineteenth Century

7 November 2015

The many possibilities of debating German heritage

Review of:

Kristina Jõekalda, Krista Kodres, eds, Debating German Heritage: Art History and Nationalism during the Long Nineteenth Century. Special issue of Kunstiteaduslikke Uurimusi 2014, vol. 23, no. 3/4.

Anne Nike van Dam 13/AvD1

Abstract: This review discusses the volume Debating German Heritage, a special issue of the journal Kunstiteaduslikke Uurimusi. This issue focuses heritage and art historical knowledge production in relation to nationalism, containing an introduction and six essays on a variety of subjects related to this main theme. The essays each approach heritage practices in the nineteenth century from different a perspective, ranging from canon formation to heritage preservation efforts at theatres of war. This review takes a closer look at each of the essays and studies the main contribution of the volume to the field of art history and heritage scholarship. Overall, this special issue offers interesting insights in the relationship between the dynamics of heritage preservation, art historical scholarship and nationalism from the point of view of Eastern and Central European scholarship with a ‘German connection’. In all, the essays are invariably well researched, often innovative in their approach and pleasant to read.

Keywords: Germany, art history, heritage, nationalism, Baltic States, nineteenth century

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