Zsofia Lovei




This article examines how a Marian shrine in Csíksomlyó, Transylvania acts as a Foucauldian heterotopia for Magyar speaking individuals, residing in the Carpathian Basin, and beyond in the diaspora most especially during the annual Pentecost pilgrimage. Following introductory remarks on the site and my stance, I turn to methodology, and Hungarian scholarship on the topic. Afterwards, I provide a “thick description” of fieldwork I conducted on-site in May of 2015. I then turn to various theoretical ties, which I support with emic analysis. Lastly, I turn to ideas of heterotopias, and provide a brief formal analysis. My main incentive is to show and describe how the pilgrimage to Csíksomlyó at Pentecost changes the land of the site temporarily—whereby this Marian shrine becomes a heterotopic locus of sacrality, each year, 50 days after Easter. These findings may lead to further research on how such Marian shrines are refracted and reflected as othered spaces within the digital realm, especially as per the coronavirus pandemic of 2020.



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