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How people remember a violent past determines how they envision the future. Focusing on transgenerational and performative memory work of young people, we investigate the transformative potential of memory and factors facilitating/hindering a creative engagement with the past towards peace.
In many post-conflict settings, performative and transgenerational remembrance are seen as pathways towards more peaceful futures. To facilitate transformation and to potentially generate hope, such memory work requires 1) creative approaches that open up spaces for reflection, reconstruction and engagement, and 2) supportive wider contexts. Together, they allow for the negotiation of desired futures. In this panel, we want to investigate the transformative potential of memory and ask which factors support hopeful processes of remembering and which factors hinder, discourage or undermine a creative and transformative engagement with the past - be it, for instance, a specific political climate, lack of access to creative means or the lack of motivation to engage in such work. With our focus on transgenerational and performative memory work, we are particularly interested in how young people who grew up during violent conflict or were born in its aftermath remember that violence. We also ask how the youth is part or a target group of national/international programs or interventions aimed to create transgenerational memoryscapes. How do young actors creatively engage with memory, for instance through social media, arts, storytelling, alternative participatory transitional justice tools and others and how are these practices inspired by both global patterns and aesthetics of memorialisation and local cultural approaches to reconciliation and remembrance? For our panel, we invite scholars who study and/or themselves engage in such transformative creative memory work and analyses based on both empirical field research material as well as conceptual reflections that resonate with our panel themes.
Anna-Karina Hermkens (Macquarie University)
Malek Rasamny (EHESS)
Mareike Scherer (University of Zurich)