In the aftermath of the 1989 Revolution, Romanian mainstream culture set out to reclaim the pre-Communist legacy of the country. The ‘golden age’ of interwar was the obvious choice; both popular and academic debates on Romanian identity looked back at the time of the so-called Greater Romania. The present day Suceava County is singular in its regional identification with the former Habsburg Duchy of Bukovina. The Austrian occupation of the Northern part of the historical principality of Moldova between 1775 and 1918 provides an identity building opportunity to the locals who seem to find fault with Moldovan regional designation. Bukovina comes into the picture of the hospitality industry mostly, yet there is more to the Bukovinian identification. The literature published by Suceava County Council appears to employ a marketing strategy for the same hospitality industry that dwells on what is, essentially, the colonial past of the area. At odds with Romanian self-identification, the narrative of Bukovina underpins the discourse of local government as a means to foster brand awareness for the entire county, although Southern Suceava was never incorporated into the Habsburg/Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Dr Onoriu Colăcel is Lecturer of British Studies and English Literature at the Faculty of Letters and Communication Sciences of Ștefan cel Mare University, Suceava, Romania. His work focuses on contemporary English literature and patterns of self-identification in literature and popular culture