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Kaliningrad and Cultural Memory

Cold War and Post-Soviet Representations of a Resettled City


Edward Saunders

In 1945, the Soviet Union annexed the East Prussian city of Königsberg, later renaming it Kaliningrad. Left in ruins by the war, the home of Immanuel Kant became a Russian city, a source of historical and cultural fascination for settlers, former inhabitants, visitors and observers alike. New settlers replaced the German population in the years that followed. This book looks at three aspects of Kaliningrad’s relationship to the memory of Königsberg through cultural and literary sources and visual representations. First, it addresses the symbolism of Königsberg as a memory site in German culture and nostalgia for the city after 1945. Second, it discusses imagined and satirical literary-cultural adaptations and deconstructions of the idea of «Kant and Königsberg» during the Cold War and afterwards. Third, it explores and reflects on discourses of memory, history and nostalgia in representations of the city by poets, photographers and filmmakers visiting Kaliningrad from the 1960s onwards. The book provides an introduction to the memory debates relating to Königsberg-Kaliningrad, as well as new critical readings of literary texts, films and photographic works.


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Part II Literary Allegories of the Philosophical Canon: ‘Kant and Königsberg’ as a Co-ordinate of Cold War Memory


Part II Literary Allegories of the Philosophical Canon: ‘Kant and Königsberg’ as a Co- ordinate of Cold War Memory Chapter 4 Toppling a Monument: Adapting Biomyths in Satires on ‘Kant and Königsberg’ ‘A powerful site of memory’, says Astrid Erll, ...

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