03 November 2009

On the Usefulness of Walls for Politics (7) ~ Visualizing Transcience

"Events, by definition, are occurrences that interrupt routine
processes and routine procedures." ~ Hannah Arendt

"If this proposal is correct, then it is easy to appreciate why
we so often identify or describe events in terms of their causes
and effects. Not only are these features that often interest us
about events, but they are features guaranteed to individuate
them in the sense not only of telling them apart but also of
telling them together." ~ Donald Davidson

A short while ago I posted links to a couple of essays, reflections on the collapse of communism in 1989 and the aftermath of that event actually set of events. Today I came across this pretty impressive photo essay at Spiegel Online. The series - entitled "The East-West German Border, Then & Now" - is by Jürgen Ritter and, as the title indicates, is a sort of 'before and after,' affair. In many respects it brings to mind the similar project by Brian Rose about which I posted here a couple of years back. Here, though, many of the photographs depict changes in patterns of activity, prompting one to imagine how the inhabitants now tell together things that they used to tell apart.
Both Photographs © Jürgen Ritter. Here are his captions:

(1) "The border on the peak of a mountain, 1984: The border ran along the top of the Junker Mountain by a Thuringian town called Lindewerra, in what used to be East Germany. At this altitude, Lindewerra was one of the few villages that could be observed directly from the West. This photograph was taken in 1984 in what was then the Erfurt region."

(2) "Junker's Peak, 2009: Now the only thing dividing the scenic Thuringian region is the Werra River. The scar created by the border is also slowly healing."

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