Civil War Canon: Sites of Confederate Memory in South CarolinaIn this expansive history of South Carolina's commemoration of the Civil War era, Thomas J. Brown uses the lens of place to examine the ways that landmarks of Confederate memory have helped white southerners negotiate their shifting political, social, and economic positions. By looking at prominent sites such as Fort Sumter, Charleston's Magnolia Cemetery, and the South Carolina statehouse, Brown reveals a dynamic pattern of contestation and change. He highlights transformations of gender norms and establishes a fresh perspective on race in Civil War remembrance by emphasizing the fluidity of racial identity within the politics of white supremacy. Despite the conservative ideology that connects these sites, Brown argues that the Confederate canon of memory has adapted to address varied challenges of modernity from the war's end to the present, when enthusiasts turn to fantasy to renew a faded myth while children of the civil rights era look for a usable Confederate past. In surveying a rich, controversial, and sometimes even comical cultural landscape, Brown illuminates the workings of collective memory sustained by engagement with the particularity of place.
What Can and Can't Be SaidAn original study of monuments to the civil rights movement and African American history that have been erected in the U.S. South over the past three decades, this powerful work explores how commemorative structures have been used to assert the presence of black Americans in contemporary Southern society. The author cogently argues that these public memorials, ranging from the famous to the obscure, have emerged from, and speak directly to, the region's complex racial politics since monument builders have had to contend with widely varied interpretations of the African American past as well as a continuing presence of white supremacist attitudes and monuments.
Civil Rights Memorials and the Geography of MemoryThe creation of memorials dedicated to the civil rights movement is a watershed event in the commemoration of southern and American history, an important reversal in the traditional invisibility of African Americans within the preservation movement. Collective memory, to be sure, is certainly about honoring the past―whether it is Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthplace in Atlanta or the memorial to Rosa Parks in Montgomery―but it is also about the ongoing campaign for civil rights and the economic opportunities associated with heritage tourism.
Excavating Memory: Sites of Remembering and ForgettingThe chapters in this volume represent an intriguing, interdisciplinary approach to the study of memory, touching on issues of heritage, storytelling, and reconciliation. The central concern of this volume is not only how we remember the past in the present, but who remembers the past, opening up an engagement with descendant communities and public scholarship.
The New Berlin: Memory, Politics, and PlaceThe New Berlin reveals a city haunted by ghosts from difficult pasts and "remembered futures," a place where past, present, and future collide in unexpected ways as individuals and groups search for what it means to be German. Karen Till skillfully moves through the spaces and times of a city marked by voids, ruins, and construction cranes to search through material and affective landscapes of intentional forgetting and painful remembering. In doing so, she deepens our understanding of the practice and politics of place making - and of how particular places embody and narrate distinct national pasts and futures, stories of belonging, and the absences and presences of social memory-work. Four locations frame The New Berlin: the Topography of Terror, the much-debated Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, the Jewish Museum, and Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Memorial and Museum. Through these and other sites, we encounter people unexpectedly colliding with and evoking ghosts from multiple Berlins as they dig through social and material landscapes, claim public spaces, market the city, go on tours, or debate what national past should be remembered, for whom, where, and in what form. Through a complex interweaving of field notes, interviews, archival texts, personal narratives, public art, maps, images, and other sources, Till deftly describes how these places and spaces uniquely exemplify the contradictions and tensions of social memory and national identity in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Highlighting an interdisciplinary "geo-ethnographic" and nonlinear temporal approach to place making and memory in postunification Germany, The New Berlin introduces readers to people confronting loss and past injustices amid the construction sites and ghosts of the contemporary city.
Monument Culture: International Perspectives on the Future of Monuments in a Changing WorldThe book presents a broad view of the challenges facing individuals and society in making sense of public monuments with contested meanings. From the United States to Europe to Africa to Australia and New Zealand to South America and beyond, the contributors tackle the ways in which different places approach monuments in a landscape where institutions and ideas are under direct challenge from political and social unrest. It also discusses sharply changed attitudes about the representation of history and memory in the public sphere.