May 30, 2024

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Troubled pasts, and their implicati… – Information Centre – Research & Innovation

How do you create a popular foreseeable future from a legacy of conflict? Resolve goes a extended way, as the historical past of the EU demonstrates – but constructing bridges is not easy. EU-funded scientists are analysing collective memories of previous strife that still influences group relations today, in a bid to support advance European integration.


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The EU-funded REPAST task is discovering how societies deal with the extended shadow of previous conflicts, in a bid to crank out insights and present suggestions for policymakers and civil modern society. Scenario studies are remaining done in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Kosovo, Eire, Poland and Spain.

‘We want to comprehend what facets of various difficult legacies stay on in a problematic vogue today and make obstacles to the integration and relations of the various populations in Europe,’ claims task coordinator Dimitra Milioni of the Cyprus University of Engineering. ‘To do so, we are investigating how conflict discourses are remaining formulated and disseminated in the public sphere.’

As of March 2020, the project’s extensive details-selection workout has been finished, and the scientists have started to process the comprehensive product they have collected. The triggers and qualities of unique conflicts could vary, but the scientists still be expecting to obtain commonalities in the handling of unpleasant and probably contested collective memories, Milioni explains.

Illuminating historical past

‘Our goal is to arrive at some kind of typology of troubled previous discourses today,’ she claims. ‘We’re analysing how persons in various cultures and nations arrived to bear in mind the sources of these conflicts and how they negotiate and with any luck , renegotiate the first triggers. And we also want to see how all this is related to Europe today, and European integration.’

Northern Eire, for instance, is a single territory exactly where the previous is never ever far absent.

‘There’s a regular undercurrent of stress, in particular all around controversial problems,’ Milioni explains. ‘It is an instance of how even a settled troubled previous can re-emerge and could probably also be revived, in particular via political discourse, often via media discourse, but also via public discourse.’ In REPAST’s other scenario examine nations around the world, the situation is identical.

The project’s details selection considered 4 places of expression: politics, historical past – both equally oral and official – and the media, as well as art and culture. It integrated routines as different as interviewing locals about their individual recollections of previous occasions or about the memories that were handed on to them by elders, discovering common and citizen media, scouring party manifestos and viewing stage performances.

‘In Cyprus, for instance, we found out that various artists are doing work with political dance, which is not widely known,’ she claims. ‘We observed how this kind of artistic activity truly makes an attempt to recreate the previous, and probably also difficulties hegemonic representations of this previous.’

Rapid forward

The emphasis in the task, which is owing to conclude in April 2021, will now change from details selection to details evaluation, and to the production of sources and recommendations for policymakers – both equally in the REPAST scenario examine nations around the world and at EU degree – and civil modern society organisations such as non-governmental organisations invested in peacebuilding.

Other concentrate on audiences in places with a bitter legacy involve vacationer guides, for whom REPAST intends to organise seminars and generate e-studying elements. A details system will enable anyone with an fascination to investigate, evaluate and distinction data collected by the task and entry its various other outputs, Milioni notes. The companions are also arranging to formulate methodology to aid foreseeable future research in the industry.

One software below enhancement is an online game that fosters players’ capacity to evaluate historic data. Many diversifications of the game, which is primarily supposed for schoolchildren, will be developed to go well with various ages and national contexts.

‘REPAST strives to convey the strategy that historical past as taught in universities, for instance, or as presented in public discourse, is often manufactured,’ Milioni emphasises. ‘As citizens, we have to have to acquire a action back, we have to have to build the abilities to comprehend that what is remaining projected corresponds to a specific place of view, to a specific entry place.’