As part of the project Povești Nespuse – Untold Stories, this week we have organized an artistic happening entitled Piața Roma-nă. The general theme of the happening was the challenge of the ingrained idea that it is acceptable for the period of Roma slavery to be excluded from the official history presented in the textbooks. The absence of a minimum amount of information regarding the 500 years of Roma slavery in the Romanian Principalities leads to the continuation of the status quo in which this period of history is ignored, distorted and rendered invisible.
The location of the happening was Piața Romană in Bucharest. Piața Romană was chosen for various reasons. Firstly, this is a very circulated and popular place in Bucharest, fit for highlighting the need to bring true history in the public space. Secondly, we wished for Piața Romană to become for several minutes Piața Roma-nă, a space in which we could articulate a way to create together an inclusive and adequate history that comprises the experiences and history of Roma people in Romania.
At the beginning of our artistic manifestation, the participants to the happening transmitted the main message of this activity: History is being told by whom? Later on the passer-byes were invited and took part in short discussions on the absence of mentions regarding Roma slavery in the history textbooks, on the importance of listening to Roma voices and on the necessity of these subjects’ presence in the public space. We were happy to have beside us Roma and non-Roma activists as well as Roma artists and actresses like Mihaela Drăgan and Zita Moldovan.
Thank you for your participation and your involvement!