Heritage of silenced memories
Katja Hrobat Virloget (University of Primorska)
Michèle Baussant (CNRS, ISP)
Start time:
22 June, 2015 at 10:30
Session slots:

Short abstract:

The social processes of establishing a consensual collective memory include the contest of different groups for the hegemony of their memory and the obliteration of the "other". The aim is to identify the silenced parts of memory and heritage with the utopian question of their reconciliation.

Long abstract:

According to Halbwachs the individual memory can support the collective memory, but if it does not fit into the dominant image of the past, it can be rejected. The research question includes not just silenced memory but also heritage, perceived as an ideological apparatus of memory. The consequence of the reorganisation of Europe on the base of the nationalisation processes was not just the exclusion of "the other", the expulsion of people, the creation of the national minorities, but also the persistence of groups of people, that because of the nationalization remained in the home-country as "foreigners" or marginalized, since they did not share the dominant national identity. Moreover, as they represented the previous oppressors and were collectively held guilty, their existence and memories were silenced and their heritage left falling into oblivion. The silenced memories are not limited just to different national, ethnic identities, but also to the groups identifying with defeated alternative political ideologies, religions or the denial of the colonial (or other) past. In this panel, we would like to grasp, from an interdisciplinary perspective, how this process is being built, according to the social, historical and political context. How the memories of lived or recounted experience find meaning in the framework of more "institutional", official or historical interpretations which today pepper certain public discourses on the past, exacerbating tensions and conflicts. In what way do these marginalized memories produce nostalgic forms of the past from which utopian project ideas may arise?