Yugoslavism through the Syntax of Classicism: WWI Memorials in Belgrade and Ljubljana, 1931-1939
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Unlike most of the post-WWI newly established and old nation-states, the multiethnic Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (from 1929 the Kingdom of Yugoslavia) had its own ideological raison d'être in the idea of a simultaneously composite and primordial nation. The ideology of primordial Yugoslavism was a complex set of ideas referring to the multiethnic community of Yugoslavs — sharply divided not only by culture, but also by the experience in the Great War — seeking a cohesive national culture. The idea of a single, primordial nation, united by common descent and future prospects, was based on the mythologization of the people's original unity, as well as obliteration of cultural, religious and, most importantly, political differences. In this respect, the symbolic legacy of classicism had much to offer for the cultural imagination of Yugoslavism. The examples include: Roman Verhovskoj's Monument and Crypt to the Defenders of Belgrade (1931), the nearby Memorial to the Russian Sold...iers fallen in the war (1934), Ivan Meštrović's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on avala near belgrade (1934-1938) and Edvard Ravnikar's Ossuary of War Victims (1937-1939) in Ljubljana.
Keywords:Yugoslavia / War memorials / World War I / Yugoslavism / Neo-classicism / Ivan Meštrović / Roman Verhovskoj / Edvard Ravnikar / Memorials
Source:Yugoslav monuments associated with the First World War : (1918-1941) : symposium, [Moderna galerija], Ljubljana, 18-19 October 2018, 2018, 32-33
- Ljubljana : Department of Art History, Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana