Aspirational Iconography: Becoming European in Postcommunist States

Thursday, July 13, 2017
Gilbert Scott Conference Room - 251 (University of Glasgow)
Juliet Johnson , Political Science, McGill University
Benjamin Forest , Geography, McGill University
This paper analyzes the ways in which post-communist states have used EU iconography (eg, the EU flag symbol) to signal and (re)build European identities since 1989. EU-specific symbols assert both aspiration and constructed reality, saying through imagery that a particular state belongs (or should belong) to the European community. Using our original database on the evolution of monuments and memorials in 26 post-communist states since 1989, we give a general overview of the use of EU-specific iconography in post-communist EU member states and Eastern Partnership states. We then have a case study section looking at the evolving use of the EU flag during and after the Euromaidan protests in Ukraine.