- Column: “A travel story of Sarajevo – Sarajevo through the eyes of a foreign traveler” (MediaPulse Production (Sarajevo), 2020)
Column: “A travel story of Sarajevo – Sarajevo through the eyes of a foreign traveler”
“I visited Sarajevo in July 2019. I was impressed by the marvellous memorial monuments dedicated to the innocent victims of the war – pain that we should never forget. Remembering their efforts, existence and identity means contributing greatly for the preservation of the international peace and security. The innocent war victims were our brothers and sisters part of our global human family. Forgetting them is an intentional betrayal for the whole humanity and our common sense of empathy. May the horrors of the war never repeat again. Hope never dies”.
(A message from Hristina Crenn)
History is a perpetual commencement. The cultural features of Sarajevo are unprecedentedly unique as a reflection of the existant original symbiosis of the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian influences. The rhythm of the heart of Sarajevo vibrates around the impeccable charm of the city center, the wonderful smell of the delicious ‘Ćevape’ (kebap), the ambrosial flavour of the ‘baklava’ (Turkish delight) in the old town and the numerous historical monuments that constitute the soul of transitional justice. More precisely, Sarajevo is a veritable melting-pot of the Balkan region.
The Museum of Childhood reflects the painful journey of the survivors and heroes of the war atrocities. The universal message of this museum is the preservation of children’s memory as a constant reminder of the necessity to establish the indispensable existence of peace through the prism of time. Remembrance is the perennial mechanism of transitional justice that portrays simultaneously the fundamental process of constructing the durability of peace.
In addition to the cultural trajectory of Sarajevo, there is the National Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina as the most emblematic cultural institution of the country that represents the perfect labyrinth for History lovers. Diving deeply in the historical past of our ancestors is the infinite journey of collecting the various pieces of the unsolvable puzzle called life. The various memorial monuments encompass the eagerness for preserving the values of tolerance, patience, religious harmony, common consciousness and most notably ensuring the well-being of the inhabitants. Thus, the significant presence of cultural diversity of the Jewish, Christian and Muslim communities depicts the colourful centennial history of mutual harmony established meticulously over time.
The most distinguished memorial center is the Children’s Square of Sarajevo as a vivid remembrance of the innocent souls and victims of the merciless and hostile war acts. Walking in the park of the square and reading the carved marble inscriptions containing the names of the murdered children generates moments of sadness, tearfulness, emotions, anger and perplexity at the same time. Sadness for the deceased children, anger for the oppressors. The multiple meanings of the word Justice refer to the slowness of the obsolete jurisdictional mechanisms that fail to grant reparations to the families of the victims within a specific period of time due to the absence of reciprocal research of evidence for establishing the truth.
The most incredible place of the city is the monument of the ‘Eternal flame’ that literally ‘prolonges’ the life of the innocent victims through the lenses of the phenomenon of remembrance. Sarajevo is definitely the place everyone must visit, at least once in a lifetime.
2.Column: “The Mosaics of ancient Heraclea Lyncestis Macedonia – Elements of a colorful recorded history” (MediaPulse Production (Sarajevo), 2020)
Column published on the website of Media Pulse Production House of Sarajevo: https://pulse.ba/index.php/pulse-lifestyle/3472-the-mosaics-of-ancient-heraclea-lyncestis-macedonia-elements-of-a-colorful-recorded-history
*Hristina Crenn is a bachelor student of Law at Paris 1 Panthéon – Sorbonne University (France) and History and Political Science and International Relations at Ibn Haldun University (Turkey).
Column: “The Mosaics of ancient Heraclea Lyncestis Macedonia – Elements of a colorful recorded history”
The art of crafting historical imprints is probably the most valuable heritage of the Roman Era. Therefore, the Roman mosaics are wonderful masterpieces of the craftsmen of the epoch depicting the real conception of the society. The motifs of the mosaics include animal portraits reflecting peculiar meanings. As we know, the Roman world was a polytheistic construction of divinely appointed gods and goddesses. The traditional values and customs promoted largely the importance of the rulers. The kings represented the will of the gods. Moreover, they served as an intermediary between the gods and the people. A unique portrait of the symbol of power of the central administration present in the periphery of the Roman Empire.
The primordial aspect of the Roman Art is shaped by the existence of floor mosaics. Thus, the most famous Roman mosaics are the ones excavated in the archaeological city of Heraclea Lyncestics (nowadays Bitola). Bitola is one of the cosmopolitan cities of the southern part of Macedonia. Heraclea Lyncestis as a Roman Municipium was constructed roughly around the 4th century BC. The city was located on the crucial trade route Via Egnatia. Overtime, the famous phrase ‘All the routes lead to Rome’ emerged. The floor mosaics are incredibly decorated with colourful stone tiles representing the essence of the diverse animal portraits. The Roman craftsmen were very skilled and talented.
The rectangular shape of the floor mosaics is a fascinating demonstration of the sensitivity of the Roman art and culture. The natural elements present on the mosaics reveal the secrets of the local observations of the harmonious cycle of the nature. Trees, birds, leaves, flowers and animals are the main figures of the theatrical scene of the mosaics. A structural emphasis of the four seasons of the year is widely noticeable as well. The popular saying that ‘the strong will survive and the weak will perish’ is vividly represented on the mosaics: the tiger attacking the deer and the lion attacking the bull. Indeed, such animal fights explain the veritable position of the state power based on the hierarchical structure of the society and the strong place of the Church. Some interesting local beliefs mention that the process of emancipation was prevalent by following strict traditional rules. For example, one of the interesting stories or myths were that a young boy had always to hunt a lion in order to become an adult. The transition from adolescence to adulthood was socially determined.
The floor mosaics are the remains of an early Christian Roman Cathedral in Heraclea Lyncestis known as the Small Basilica and the Great Basilica. The excellent preservation of the Basilicas signifies abundantly about the longevity of the Roman art. The astonishingly beautiful columns around the Basilicas testify about the process of urbanisation or city planning. The Romans were pioneers in this matter by establishing aqueducts, forums and legal courts.
Only by remembering the beauty of the past, we can never forget the history of one of the greatest world civilisations in terms of cultural transmission and legal enterprise. If you travel in the southern part of Macedonia, visit the city of Bitola and discover the colourful mosaics of Heraclea Lyncestis.