RC4: History & Memory
Coordinator: Dr. Maria Mälksoo
This research cluster explores the political contestation between different mnemonic communities and memory regimes of the EU and Russia over the right to shape a common European understanding and remembrance of World War II and Soviet communism. The emphasis is on analysing the politicization of history in Russia and some new EU member states in particular, in order to understand the ongoing conflicts of memory and their implications for broader EU-Russian relations. The RC addresses the shifting social frames of the collective European remembrance of World War II and Soviet communism. It traces the asymmetrical patterns of recognition-seeking, ignorance, and denial of this twentieth-century legacy, which are mediated by the divergent historical experiences and political interests of new and old EU members, and Russia. We depart from an assumption that the way in which the wider European community favours some histories over others lays bare the political balance between ‘old’ and ‘new’ Europeans, between traditional and emergent actors in European politics. The critical investigation of the politics of the common European remembrance of the various experiences of totalitarianism hence reveals much about the current transformation of the modern European polity. The cluster is supported by Maria Mälksoo’s MOBILITAS post-doctoral fellowship (2010-2014) and a HERA grant for studying cultural dynamics of memory in Poland, Russia, and Ukraine (2010-2013).
The main objectives of the RC are:
- mapping the competing mnemopolitical initiatives vis-à-vis the legacy of Soviet communism in Russia, the EU and pan-European organisations (e.g., OSCE, Council of Europe);
- analysing the links between memory politics and ontological security in multiple EU countries and Russia;
- conceptualising the pan-European organisation and institutionalisation attempts of the public remembrance of totalitarian regimes.
Researchers associated: Heiko Pääbo, Eva-Clarita Pettai, Olaf Mertelsmann, Martins Kaprans, Peter Švik
Cooperations and Projects:
The research cluster “Memory & History” is engaged in a number of research networks or projects.
For more details please visits “Ongoing projects”