Transforming a Totalitarian Edifice: Artistic and Ethnographic Engagements with the House of the People in Bucharest

  • Ger Duijzings
Part of the Modernity, Memory and Identity in South-East Europe book series (MOMEIDSEE)


Bucharest’s House of the People, renamed Parliament Palace after the end of socialism, is one of the largest edifices ever built. Erected during the 1980s and finished in the post-socialist period, it has been described as one of the most radical and violent interventions into the fabric of a city in history. Socialist urban forms and landscapes provide some of the best examples of the symbiotic relationship between power and architecture, even though now they form just the remnants, the tangible and visible legacies, of a rejected totalitarian past. This chapter looks at people’s social exchanges related to and memories, images, and daily use of the material setting. The reflective nostalgia caused by the demolitions of homes and neighbourhoods has been silenced and overwritten by a politically hegemonic restorative nostalgia that defines the building as a great national achievement of the Romanian people.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ger Duijzings
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für GeschichteUniversität RegensburgD-93047 RegensburgGermany

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