Journalism


7. RIJEKA ITALIANS IN ROME

When winners write down history, important facts are most often suppressed, ignored or forgotten. When, besides that, there is a city which inside a single century changes so many directions, administrators, armies and police posts, as well as the official languages, one can only imagine a historical chaos in which an old square keeps standing on the very same spot, but changes address every twenty years. Such is the case with our very own city of Rijeka and its history during the expired century. RomeThose who - in time to come - would attempt to create 'una vera storia di Fiume' will at least face the problem of parallel histories, each of them deficient, which maybe could be brought together to create one whole objective.
Turning the leaves of the books whose titles indicate that the content will reveal Rijeka's history, the 'malicious' reader will observe that virtually all of them contain a black hole in memory of Rijeka between two great world wars, and particularly of the period of the total change of the Rijeka population structure after WWII, which is better known as the exodus of the Italians, also known as Fiumans (from Italian to Rijeka, Fiume). Even the more recent 'histories of Rijeka', despite their stressed brevity, succeed to remain superficial towards the fact that fifty years ago the whole city on the right bank of the river Rjecina emptied, and the 'new city moved in'.
Rijeka 'esuli' or refugees who today live in Rome have a name for the city that disappeared. They call it the 'City of Memories'. Changes of the political environs, and the rise of the independent Croatian state helped them to re-discover their lost Atlantis, and vice versa, because as late as some ten years ago, 'esuli' were considered a taboo... pic pic pic

<previous::next>