Browsing by Author "Aarnipuu, Petja"

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  • Aarnipuu, Petja (Suomalaisen Kirjallisuuden Seura, 2008)
    The Turku castle, founded c. 1300, has changed over the centuries from a medieval defensive structure into a Renaissance palace and from a derelict jailhouse in the late 19th century into a prime example of the Medieval built heritage in Finland. Today, it is first and foremost a monument to the Medieval and Renaissance heyday of the castle. This is apparent in the architectural forms that have been carefully restored and reconstructed. It also becomes clear in all kinds of narratives, both visual (like the set of miniatures about the different stages of the construction of the castle) and textual (as during the guided tours). For the first time in the architectural history of the Turku castle, the Medieval, the Renaissance, the Modern, and the Present as architecturally constructed or reconstructed spaces can all be visited within the same hour. As a result, the monumental Turku castle may even be deemed anachronistic or inauthentic. In this study I look at the ways in which the Turku castle is, indeed, anachronistic and inauthentic. My main objective, however, is to find ways in which the anachronisms and inauthenticities are overcome in a positive way. I base my analysis of the Turku castle on three theoretical standpoints. First, I am studying the castle as space, described by Michel de Certeau as a practiced place (de Certeau 2002). Second, I am approaching the numerous narrative aspects of the castle following Paul Ricoeur s analysis of narrative as a threefold mimetic process (Ricoeur 1990). From these two theoretical settings I have summoned the concept of narrative space. The life and work at the castle are based on expectations and understandings of the historical surroundings. My third theoretical choice is to study this applied knowledge of the place as the management of blocks of knowledge in communication (Robert de Beaugrande 1980). Combining the theoretical starting points of space and narrative , I am approaching the castle as if it were an evolving set of narratives, narrated in space but also through space. Seeing e.g. the restoration teams of the mid-20th century and the present day tour guides as creative narrators, I am looking beyond the dilemma of the anachronistic spaces. What transpires is an inter-connected web of texts and spaces, tangible and intangible narratives. My analytical key to these narrative relationships is the threefold mimetic process of pre-figuration, con-figuration, and re-figuration, inspired by the writings of Paul Ricoeur (1990). This way, the past can be seen as a pool of endless possibilities to emplot place, time, and action into a narrative space. The narratives convey images of the past that may be contested by other images, and the power to narrate in the first place can be challenged and re-distributed.