Matching Items (12)

131283-Thumbnail Image.png

Physical Landscapes as Living Memories: A Case Study of Belgrade, Sarajevo, and Zagreb

Description

Buildings and monuments serve as a communal declaration of identity and as the physical landscape upon which memories are inscribed. Through its ability to concrete identity and capacity to reconstruct

Buildings and monuments serve as a communal declaration of identity and as the physical landscape upon which memories are inscribed. Through its ability to concrete identity and capacity to reconstruct the narratives of the past, public spaces and places have the structure of memory and serve as a fundamental aspect of cultural memory from which groups derive their identities. Beyond the social function of communal spaces, as a spatial claim architecture is a political expression of the territorial imperatives of the state. Consequently, both the political and social significance of physical spaces/places lead to the direct targeting of buildings, landscapes, and recognizable monuments in the processes of war.
As evidenced by the 1991-5 War in Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia, culturally-relevant and internationally recognizable symbols of culture, like Stari Most in Bosnia and the Old Town of Dubrovnik, were destroyed with the purpose of manipulating the physical memories of the communities, thereby directly affecting the cultural identities of the communities residing there. As it stands, scholarship on the subject of memory in post-war areas has failed to consider the effects of space/place on memory, consequently failing to provide a viable theoretical framework to explain the interplay of space/place, memory, and identity. This paper is an effort to connect the current scholarship on memory, its function and effects on identity, with the realities of the physical environment in Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia and their function of imposed confrontation, and thus recollection, of the War. The purpose of my thesis is to put city landscapes (private, uncrated memories) and museum narratives (public, curated memories) in communication to demonstrate how influential a factor space/place is in determining collective memory in a Balkan context. Cultural memory is at once incredibly vulnerable to reconstruction and massively determinate of group identity, thereby necessitating a deeper understanding of its determinant factors and the present uses of such factors.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

135843-Thumbnail Image.png

Copper, Cowboys, and Converts: Resurrecting Arizona "Ghost" Towns

Description

In Arizona, people flock the streets of Tombstone in droves, chatting in period costume while gunshots ring down the street. Others in Bisbee walk in the Queen Mine, listening to

In Arizona, people flock the streets of Tombstone in droves, chatting in period costume while gunshots ring down the street. Others in Bisbee walk in the Queen Mine, listening to the tour guide discuss how the miners extracted ore. Still others drive up the precarious road to Jerome, passing through the famed Grand Hotel. As former Arizona mining towns, Tombstone, Jerome and Bisbee have a shared identity as former mining boomtowns, all of which experienced subsequent economic and population decline. Left with the need to reinvent themselves in order to survive, the past takes on a different role in each city. In Jerome, visitors seem content to "kill a day" against the backdrop of the historic town. In Bisbee, time seems stuck in the 1970s, the focus having shifted from the mining to the "hippies" who are considered to have resuscitated the town from near-extinction. Tombstone seem to inspire devotion, rooted in the influence of the 1993 film titled after the town. By memorializing portions of their past, these three towns have carved out new lives for themselves in the twenty-first century. As visitors are informed by the narrative of the "Old West," as shaped by the Western movie and television genre, they in turn impact how the towns present themselves in order to attract tourists. In all these sites, the past is present and like a kaleidoscope, continually recreated into new formations. While the designation of Jerome, Bisbee and Tombstone as "ghost towns" is disputed by individuals in each site, these stories of visitors and residents reveal the intricate ways in which these towns have acquired new life.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-05

136055-Thumbnail Image.png

The Art of Memory: Public Memorials

Description

Abstract The Art of Memory: Public Memorials Scarlett Olson In ancient times, memorials were constructed to commemorate victories in battle or to pay homage to kings and gods. Now, however,

Abstract The Art of Memory: Public Memorials Scarlett Olson In ancient times, memorials were constructed to commemorate victories in battle or to pay homage to kings and gods. Now, however, memorials focus more on the events of war and those who died fighting for their country. They are spaces designed to create an atmosphere of quiet reflection to allow us to honor the dead and to serve as a reminder of the consequences of our actions. In this paper, I will analyze public memorials, specifically the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, using the concept of collective memory. The idea of collective memory was first formulated by Maurice Halbwachs in the early twentieth century, and it is at its core the belief that a group can share the same memories regarding specific events. The ideas and theories of collective memory, when applied to the analysis of memorial, can provide a new framework for exploring the form, content, effect, and affect of these structures. Collective memory can be manipulated by society and the creation of specific memorials is one very effective way to influence public opinion about certain historical events.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2005-05

152743-Thumbnail Image.png

The ghosts of Horseshoe Bend: myth, memory, and the making of a national battlefield

Description

This research explores the various and often conflicting interpretations of the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, an event seemingly lost in the public mind of twenty-first century America. The conflict, which

This research explores the various and often conflicting interpretations of the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, an event seemingly lost in the public mind of twenty-first century America. The conflict, which pitted United States forces under the command of Major General Andrew Jackson against a militant offshoot of the Creek Confederacy, known as the Redsticks, ranks as the single most staggering loss of life in annals of American Indian warfare. Today, exactly 200 years after the conflict, the legacy of Horseshoe Bend stands as an obscure and often unheard of event. Drawing upon over two centuries of unpublished archival data, newspapers, and political propaganda this research argues that the dominate narrative of Northern history, the shadowy details of the War of 1812, and the erasure of shameful events from the legacy of westward expansion have all contributed to transform what once was a battle of epic proportions, described by Jackson himself as an "extermination," into a seemingly forgotten affair. Ultimately, the Battle of Horseshoe Bend's elusiveness has allowed for the production of various historical myths and political messages, critiques and hyperboles, facts and theories. Hailed as a triumph during the War of 1812, and a high-water mark by the proponents of Manifest Destiny, Jackson's victory has also experienced its fair share of American derision and disregard. Whereas some have criticized the battle as a "cold blooded massacre," others have glorified it as a touchstone of American masculinity, and excused it as a natural event in the unfolding of human evolution. Despite the battle's controversial nature, on 3 August 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a strong supporter of the National Park Service, approved act HR 11766 establishing Horseshoe Bend National Military Park, the very first national park in the state of Alabama. Hailed and forgotten, silenced and celebrated, exploited and yet largely unknown. This research explores what happened after the smoke cleared at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend. It is a story about the production of history, the power of the past, and the malleability of the American mind.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

155394-Thumbnail Image.png

Making space for women's history: the digital-material rhetoric of the National Women's History (cyber)Museum

Description

The struggle of the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) to make space for women’s history in the United States is in important ways emblematic of the struggle for recognition and

The struggle of the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) to make space for women’s history in the United States is in important ways emblematic of the struggle for recognition and status of American women as a whole. Working at the intersections of digital-material memory production and using the NWHM as a focus, this dissertation examines the significance of the varied strategies used by and contexts among which the NWHM and entities like it negotiate for digital, material, and rhetorical space within U.S. public memory production. As a “cybermuseum,” the NWHM functions within national public memory production at the intersections of material and digital culture; yet as an activist institution in search of a permanent, physical “home” for women’s history, the NWHM also counterproductively reifies existing gendered norms that make such an achievement difficult. By examining selected aspects of this complexly situated entity, this dissertation makes visible the gendered nature of public memory production, the digital and material components of that production, and the hybrid nature of emerging public memory entities which operate simultaneously in multiple spheres. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach and guided by Carole Blair’s work on rhetorical materiality, this dissertation explores key aspects of the NWHM’s process of becoming, including an examination of the centrality of the interpellation of publics to the rhetorical materiality of public discourse; an analysis of the material state of public memory production in national history museums in the U.S.; and an exploration of the embodied engagement that undergirds all interaction with and presentation of historical artifacts and narratives, whether digital, physical or both at once. In a synthesis of findings, this dissertation describes a set of key characteristics through which certain hybrid digital-material entities (including the NWHM) enact increasingly complex variations of rhetorical agency. These characteristics suggest a need for a more flexible analytic framework, described in the final chapter. This framework takes shape as an heuristic of functions across which digital-material entities always already enact a situated, active, embodied, and simultaneous agency, one that can account fully for the rhetorical processes through which space is “made” for women in U.S. public memory.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

154159-Thumbnail Image.png

What does the guidebook say?" (changing) historical memory at selected British palaces

Description

The constructing of visitor expectations and memory of historic sites is an important aspect of the heritage industry. This study examines the creation and change of dominant historical memories at

The constructing of visitor expectations and memory of historic sites is an important aspect of the heritage industry. This study examines the creation and change of dominant historical memories at four British palaces and ancestral homes. Through the close analysis of a variety of guidebooks beginning in the eighteenth century as well as other promotional materials such as websites and films, this study looks at which historical memories are emphasized for visitors and the reasons for these dominant memories. Place theorists such as Yi-Fu Tuan and Michel de Certeau as well as memory theorists such as Maurice Halbwachs, Pierre Nora, and Eric Hobsbawm have influenced the analysis of the project's sources. This inquiry focuses on four palaces: Hampton Court Palace outside London; Edinburgh Castle in the heart of Edinburgh, Scotland; Cardiff Castle in Cardiff, Wales; and Chatsworth House in Devonshire, England. The Victorians have played a large role in determining dominant memories at these sites through their interest in and focus on both the medieval period and objects in the home. Dominant memories discussed focus on the Tudors, medieval military importance, the myth and imagining of the Victorian medieval, the Regency period of Jane Austen, and elite family-home relationships. This study argues that the emphases on certain subjects allow us glimpses into the national spirit (past and present) of the peoples of Britain.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

152449-Thumbnail Image.png

Living relationships with the past: remembering communism in Romania

Description

In the countries of Eastern Europe, the recent history of the communist regimes creates a context rich in various and often times contradictory remembering practices. While normative discourses of memory

In the countries of Eastern Europe, the recent history of the communist regimes creates a context rich in various and often times contradictory remembering practices. While normative discourses of memory enacted in official forms of memory such as museums, memorials, monuments, or commemorative rituals attempt to castigate the communism in definite terms, remembering practices enacted in everyday life are more ambiguous and more tolerant of various interpretations of the communist past. This study offers a case study of the ways in which people remember communism in everyday life in Romania. While various inquiries into Eastern Europe's and also Romania's official and intentional forms of memorializing communism abound, few works address remembering practices in their entanglements with everyday life. From a methodological point of view, this study integrates a grounded methodology approach with a rhetorical sensitivity to explore the discourses, objects, events, and practices of remembering communism in Bucharest, the capital city of Romania. In doing so, this inquiry attends not only to the aspects of the present that animate the remembering of communism, but also and more specifically to the set of practices by which the remembering process is performed. The qualitative analysis revealed a number of conceptual categories that clustered around three major themes that describe the entanglements of remembering activities with everyday life. Relating the present to the past, sustaining the past in the present, and pursuing the communist past constitute the ways in which people in Romania live their relationships with the communist past in a way that reveals the complex interplay between private and public forms of memory, but also between the political, social, and cultural aspects of the remembering process. These themes also facilitate a holistic understanding of the rhetorical environment of remembering communism in Romania.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

152227-Thumbnail Image.png

A ",field_main_title:"good place to focus on the human cost and agony: the interpretation of violence and trauma at Gettysburg National Military Park

Description

This thesis examines the evolution of the interpretation of the battle of Gettysburg, as well as how the analysis and presentation of the battle by multiple stakeholders have affected the

This thesis examines the evolution of the interpretation of the battle of Gettysburg, as well as how the analysis and presentation of the battle by multiple stakeholders have affected the public's understanding of the violence of the engagement and subsequently its understanding of the war's repercussions. While multiple components of the visitor experience are examined throughout this thesis, the majority of analysis focuses on the interpretive wayside signs that dot the landscape throughout the Gettysburg National Military Park. These wayside signs are the creation of the Park Service, and while they are not strictly interpretive in nature, they remain an extremely visible component of the visitor's park experience. As such, they are an important reflection of the interpretive priorities of the Park Service, an agency which is likely the dominant public history entity shaping understanding of the American Civil War. Memory at Gettysburg in the first decades after the battle largely sought to focus on celebratory accounts of the clash that praised the valor of all white combatants as a means of bringing about resolution between the two sides. By focusing on triumphant memories of martial valor in a conflict fought over ambiguous reasons, veterans and the public at large neglected unsettling and difficult conversations. These avoided discussions primarily concerned what the war had really accomplished aside from preserving the Union, as white Americans appeared unwilling to confront the war's abolitionist legacy. Additionally, they avoided discussion of the horrific levels of violence that the war had truly required of its combatants. Reconciliationist memories of the conflict that did not discuss the violence and trauma of combat were thus incorporated into early interpretations of Civil War battlefields, and continued to hinder understanding of the true savagery of combat into the present. This thesis focuses on the presence (or lack thereof) of violence and trauma in the wayside interpretive signage at Gettysburg, and argues that a more active interpretation of the war's remarkably violent and traumatic legacies can assist in dislodging a faulty legacy of reconciliationist remembrance that continues to permeate public memory of the Civil War.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

150561-Thumbnail Image.png

Ghostly politics: statecraft, monumentalization, and a logic of haunting

Description

International Relations has traditionally focused on conflict and war, but the effects of violence including dead bodies and memorialization practices have largely been considered beyond the purview of the field.

International Relations has traditionally focused on conflict and war, but the effects of violence including dead bodies and memorialization practices have largely been considered beyond the purview of the field. This project seeks to explore the relationship between practices of statecraft at multiple levels and decisions surrounding memorialization. Exploring the role of bodies and bones and the politics of display at memorial sites, as well as the construction of space, I explore how practices of statecraft often rely on an exclusionary logic which renders certain lives politically qualified and others beyond the realm of qualified politics. I draw on the Derridean notion of hauntology to explore how the line between life and death itself is a political construction which sustains particular performances of statecraft. Utilizing ethnographic field work and discourse analysis, I trace the relationship between a logic of haunting and statecraft at sites of memory in three cases. Rwandan genocide memorialization is often centered on bodies and bones, displayed as evidence of the genocide. Yet, this display invokes the specter of genocide in order to legitimate specific policymaking. Memorialization of undocumented immigrants who die crossing the US-Mexico border offers an opportunity to explore practices that grieve ungrievable lives, and how memorialization can posit a resistance to the bordering mechanisms of statecraft. 9/11 memorialization offers an interesting case because of the way in which bodies were vanished and spaces reconfigured. Using the question of vanishing as a frame, this final case explores how statecraft is dependent on vanishing: the making absent of something so as to render something else present. Several main conclusions and implications are drawn from the cases. First, labeling certain lives as politically unqualified can sustain certain conceptualizations of the state. Second, paying attention to the way statecraft is a haunted performance, being haunted by the things we perhaps ethically should be haunted by, can re-conceptualize the way International Relations thinks about concepts such as security, citizenship, and power. Finally, memorialization, while seemingly innocuous, is really a space for political contestation that can, if done in certain ways, really implicate the high politics of security conventional wisdom.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

150636-Thumbnail Image.png

Baptized by saltwater: acts of remembrance and commemoration surrounding the USS Block Islands, CVE-21 & CVE-106

Description

The Second World War has been portrayed as the central event for understanding the history of America in the 20th Century. This dissertation will examine the acts of commemoration and

The Second World War has been portrayed as the central event for understanding the history of America in the 20th Century. This dissertation will examine the acts of commemoration and remembrance by veterans who served on the escort carriers, USS Block Island, CVE-21 & CVE-106. Acts of remembrance and commemoration, in this case, refer to the authorship of memoirs, the donation of symbolic objects that represent military service to museums, and the formation of a veteran's organization, which also serves as a means of social support. I am interested in the way stories of the conflict that fall outside the dominant narratives of the Second World War, namely the famous battles of land, sea, and air, have been commemorated by the veterans who were part of them. Utilizing primary source material and oral histories, I examine how acts of remembrance and commemoration have changed over time. An analysis of the shifting meanings sheds light on how individual memories of the war have changed, in light of the history of the larger war that continues to ignore small ships and sea battles.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012