Place for Something Else


The importance of place and material culture for identity-construction in contemporary European regionalism is here brought up in an investigation of the region of Istria in Croatia and Slovenia. Theories of modernity tend to regard place either as disappearing in a time-place compression or as a compensation for the uprooting in a world of globalisation and insecurity. A slightly different perspective comes to the fore when focus is being put on how regions actually are used in a contemporary praxis: as basis for people’s culture building and identification. Not as a place to defend or escape to, but as an “opening”, a possibility. From a phenomenological point of view the imaginary potentials of things and heritage are being discussed, arguing that lived experience and agency must be studied in parallel to narrations and cultural constructions. Regions also could be seen both as outcomes of micro-nationalism and as cultural imaginaries where something different is formulated.

How to Cite

Frykman, J., (2002) “Place for Something Else”, Ethnologia Europaea 32(2), 47-68. doi:

Publisher Notes

  • This article was previously published by Museum Tusculanum Press.


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Jonas Frykman (Lund University)



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