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Collective Memory, Justice, and Land Disputes after the Repatriation of the Crimean Tatars

New article by Olena Sobolieva

This article is devoted to the meaning of identity and belonging in the processes of defending land rights. The 20th century was marked by unprecedentedly large processes of rejection and redistribution of land ownership in the countries of the socialist camp. Forced confiscation of property and collectivization fundamentally changed the landscape of land ownership. And in some border territories of the Soviet Union, which includes the Crimean peninsula, the events of ethnic deportations of the population had a decisive influence on the redistribution of land ownership as well. Separated from their ethnic lands, the Crimean Tatars formed an identity that had a clear connection to the lost territory and homeland. The process of political resistance, which continued during the Soviet period, and mass spontaneous repatriation took place under the main slogan - the restoration of justice and the return of Crimean Tatars to their ethnic homeland. After the return of a large part of the Crimean Tatars to their ethnic lands, the process of restoring land rights began. This process had an organized nature and great political resonance in Crimea and led to a significant reorganization of the cultural landscape of the peninsula.