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Europe: a Cultural Border, or a Geo-cultural Archipelago

[journal article]

Horga, Ioan; Brie, Mircea

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Abstract The image of the European culture is given by the association of the concepts people – culture – history – territory, which provides certain local features. From this relation, we identify a cultural area with local, regional and national features beyond a certain European culture. Thus, we identify at least two cultural identity constructions on the European level: a culture of cultures, that is a cultural area with a particular, local, regional and national strong identity, or a cultural archipelago, that is a common yet disrupted cultural area. Whatever the perspective, the existence of a European cultural area cannot be denied, although one may speak of diversity or of “disrupted continuity”. The paper is a survey on the European cultural space in two aspects: 1. Europe with internal cultural border areas; 2. Europe as external cultural-identity border area. From a methodological point of view, we have to point out that despite the two-levelled approach the two conceptual constructions do not exclude each other: the concept of “culture of cultures” designs both a particular and a general identity area. The specific of the European culture is provided precisely by diversity and multiculturalism as means of expression on local, regional, or national levels. Consequently, the European cultural area is an area with a strong identity on both particular and general levels.
Keywords Europe; cultural relations; cultural diversity; cross-border cooperation; cultural identity
Classification Ethnology, Cultural Anthropology, Ethnosociology
Document language English
Publication Year 2010
Page/Pages p. 155-169
Journal Eurolimes (2010) 9
Issue topic The Cultural frontiers of Europe
ISSN 1841 - 9259
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution