Historical legacies and everyday-life in the Macedonian-Albanian border area.


24 June – 3 July 2014

Robert Pichler received his PhD in history at Karl-Franzens University Graz where he works as lecturer and researcher at the Centre for Southeast European History and Anthropology. He conducted extensive field research in Northern and Southern Albania as well as in Western Macedonia. He published widely on family and kinship, migration and transnationalism, upland communities and political history. As a photographer, he works at the interface of documentary and art photography.

The event and the catalog (in Albanian language) were supported by Austrian Embassy and Raiffesein Bank.


Exploration of a landscape is the outcome of a multi-annual involvement with historical legacies and post-socialist life-worlds in the Macedonian-Albanian border area. The multi-layered legacies have left their traces in the landscape; they are reflected in the multicultural constitution of the region, in the ongoing ethno-national struggles and the social and economic relations. Overcoming the dictatorial regime in Albania and the authoritarian order in Macedonia has not led to the hoped-for upturn so many people had dreamt of. The neo-capitalist system has created new dependencies, swept away social security and transported inequalities that are significantly more pronounced than in the West. On the other hand, the opening of the border has triggered a hitherto unprecedented mobility, which put the region in a short time in relationship with the world. The dynamics of social transformations has vastly accelerated without a clear direction would be recognizable. Too complex are the processes of change and too contradictory are their orientations.