The Collapse of Memory - Memory of Collapse: Remembering the Past, Re-Constructing the Future in Periods of Crisis” in Lund 21-22 September 2016

The conference aimed to discuss how the management of crisis is affected by previous experiences and memories and how crisis, disaster or collapse affect cultural memory and political agency. We were particularly interested in contributions that address how past experiences and knowledge are re-interpreted and employed in order to overcome situations of crisis and collapse. Dealing with and mastering situations of crisis, disaster or the experience of failure depends very much (1) on cultural interpretations of these events, (2) on the epistemic community which stimulates these interpretations, and (3) on the agents who contribute to the construction of possible futures. Against this background, the theorization of collapse/disaster/crisis has to take into account not only the experience itself, but more especially its medialization throughout society (Erll, 2006), and therefore the impact of memory on crisis/collapse/disaster management. Collapse and disaster are universal or global phenomena. However, the perception and construction of an event as collapse and disaster may vary from society to society.

Conference programme "Collapse of Memory"

Call for Papers

The International Research Training Group (IRTG) “Baltic Borderlands: Shifting Boundaries of Mind and Culture in the Borderlands of the Baltic Sea Region”, a collaborative programme between the universities of Lund, Tartu, and Greifswald, invites proposals for conference papers, which discuss how the management of crisis is affected by previous experiences and memories and how crisis, disaster or collapse affect cultural memory and political agency. We are particularly interested in contributions that address how past experiences and knowledge are re-interpreted and employed in order to overcome situations of crisis and collapse. Dealing with and mastering situations of crisis, disaster or the experience of failure depends very much (1) on cultural interpretations of these events, (2) on the epistemic community which stimulates these interpretations, and (3) on the agents who contribute to the construction of possible futures. Against this background, the theorization of collapse/disaster/crisis has to take into account not only the experience itself, but more especially its medialization throughout society (Erll, 2006), and therefore the impact of memory on crisis/collapse/disaster management. Collapse and disaster are universal or global phenomena. However, the perception and construction of an event as collapse and disaster may vary from society to society.
We welcome case studies, which deal with social and cultural responses to social, cultural, political, and economic crises as well as environmental disasters. Contributions may relate to incisive contemporary issues like the current refugee crisis, or the Ukraine-Russian conflict and the regional as well as global responses. However, as current perspectives are rooted in past experiences, we also welcome contributions with a historical perspective as well as papers on historical events, like the tulip crisis in the seventeenth century, the Sepoy Revolt in Delhi in the nineteenth century, or wars in Europe and other parts of the world.

Organisation

The conference is organized jointly by researchers from the IRTG Baltic Borderlands. Further information is available on our website: here or here.

Funding

The IRTG Baltic Borderlands will fund travel and accommodation for invited speakers.

Further information

Alexander Drost (Greifswald)

Olga Sasunkevich (Vilnius)

Joachim Schiedermair (Greifswald)

Barbara Törnquist-Plewa (Lund)