International Partners & Cooperation:

Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero, Argentina

Universidad Nacional de Córdoba, Argentina - IRSES

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium - IRSES

Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil - IRSES

Université Blaise Pascal Clermont-Ferrand 2, France - IRSES

Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico - IRSES

Universiteit Utrecht, The Netherlands

Universidad del País Vasco, Spain

Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Spain

Universitet Stockholms, Sweden

University of Cambridge, UK

University of Roehampton, UK - IRSES

University of California, Los Angeles, USA - IRSES

Columbia University, USA

IRSES (International Research Staff Exchange Scheme) - Transit

„Transnational Memories“

Universität Konstanz

Universidad Nacional de Córdoba

Université Blaise Pascal Clermont Ferrand 2

Presentation and objectives

This Workpackage is devoted to the analysis of memory beyond the national and nationalising framework that has prevailed in the field, focusing instead on the transnational and multidirectional dimensions of memory.

Description of work

In the last decades, the expansion of cultural memory studies has taken the nation state as the most obvious framework to analyse the political disputes about remembering the traumatic experiences of the past. In this view, there is a strong link between memory and territory: memory belongs to the cultural heritage of a nation and is located, fixed in significant places (“lieux de mémoire”, Nora 1984/1992). However, this concept of memory has been questioned by approaches emphasising the “transnational” and “multidirectional” dimensions of commemoration. According to Rothberg (2009), the histories and legacies of different groups interact in complex ways, in dialogue with the dynamic transformations and the multifaceted struggles that define globalization. Memories emerge in relation to other memories, from which they borrow resources, recognition or models of interpretation.

The Hispanic world appears as a significant case to analyse the transnational dimension of memory, taking into account that Latin America as well as Spain underwent traumatic experiences of political violence in the 20th century. The dictatorships of the 1970s in South America corresponded to a coordinated plan exceeding the framework of the nation state. The exiles caused by the Franco regime in Spain spread the political conflict outside the boundaries of the nation. Seen in this light, transnationality appears as a key dimension to understand not only the political events but also how, after the recovery of democracy, the struggles around memory in each country interact dynamically with other memories in the Hispanic world. This interaction takes place not only inside the Hispanic World but also in dialogue with memories that appear as paradigmatic, such as the Holocaust.

This WP counts three lines of research that will enter in close dialogue:

Task 1: Study the Holocaust as a paradigm to understand other experiences of political violence, with a special attention to its use in relation to Latin American dictatorships. (UBP)

Expertise in the Holocaust as a (possibly) paradigmatic experience for historic experiences of violence in other countries is present at Clermont-Ferrand and Konstanz. In both cases, experts work from a clearly comparatist outlook, explicitly involving Spain and the Spanish Civil War in one case (UBP), Latin America in the other (Konstanz).

Task 2: Analyse how the “desaparecido” (disappeared) has migrated from the Cono Sur (Argentina and Chile)to other political scenarios, particularly the disputes about the victims of the Civil War in Spain. (UKON)

Expertise on this particular subject is present at Konstanz, where an ERG has constituted a research team working on the relationship between violence and the fantastic in Latin America. Exchanges will provide them with supplementary and comparative cases for Spain.

 Task 3: Analyse the Human Rights politics as a transnational discourse that involves a complex dialecticsbetween the national/regional and supranational demands. (UNC)

The Workpackage implies a clearly interdisciplinary focus on memory and violence, including attention to the ethical and juridical dimension. This aspect is mainly represented by Córdoba, where the departments of anthropology and media studies are involved, but is also echoed by the interdisciplinary interest of the teams