Dimensions of Heritage and Memory: Multiple Europes and the Politics of Crisis, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Dimensions of Heritage and Memory

Multiple Europes and the Politics of Crisis, 1st Edition

Edited by Christopher Whitehead, Susannah Eckersley, Mads Daugbjerg, Gönül Bozoğlu


288 pages

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Hardback: 9781138589469
pub: 2019-08-12
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Dimensions of Heritage and Memory is a landmark contribution on the politics of the past in Europe today. The book explores the meanings of heritage in a time of crisis, when the past permeates social and political divisions, identity contests and official projects to forge a European community.

Providing an overview of the literature and an analysis of the assumptions, values and philosophies embedded within European-level policy, the book explores different dimensions of heritage and memory, from official sites, museums and policy, to party politics, historical re-enactments and the everyday ways in which people use the past to make sense of who they are. The volume explores how different understandings of and attachments to the European past produce different ‘Europes’ in the present, accounting for today’s tense social and political relations. The book also explores formative histories for European identities that are neglected or hidden because of political circumstances and non-official heritage. Contributors consider the meanings of interlocking crises, such as economic fallout, xenophobia and the fragmentation of the EU, for new understandings of Europe’s past in the present.

Dimensions of Heritage and Memory will be of great interest to researchers, academics and postgraduate students in the fields of heritage and memory studies, museum studies, history, cultural studies, sociology, anthropology and politics. The book will also be interesting to practitioners and cultural heritage policymakers.

Table of Contents

List of figures

List of tables

List of contributors


List of abbreviations

  1. Dimensions of European Heritage and Memory: a Framework Introduction
  2. Christopher Whitehead, Mads Daugbjerg, Susannah Eckersley and Gönül Bozoğlu

  3. Remapping European Heritage and Memory
  4. Christopher Whitehead, Gönül Bozoğlu and Mads Daugbjerg

  5. The Instruments of European Heritage
  6. Anthony Zito, Susannah Eckersley and Sam Turner

  7. Reversion and Reprisal: the Allure of Going Back and the Negotiation of Historical Identities
  8. Mads Daugbjerg, Gönül Bozoğlu and Christopher Whitehead

  9. Edges and Centres: the Forcefields of European Heritage
  10. Christopher Whitehead, Mads Daugbjerg and Gönül Bozoğlu

  11. Situating Belonging at the Intersection of Multi-scalar, Multi-dimensional, and Multi-directional Heritage: the Case of Post-industrial Communities in Gdańsk
  12. Katie Markham, Rhiannon Mason and Ramona Ślusarczyk

  13. Difficult Heritage in Europe: Paradoxical Dimensions of Time, Place and Memory
  14. Susannah Eckersley with Gönül Bozoğlu

  15. On the Politics of Selective Memory in Europe: Rethinking ‘National’ Histories in an Imperial Context
  16. Gurminder K. Bhambra

  17. Who is Europe? Staging the Making of Europe in Creative Documentary film
  18. Ian McDonald, Christopher Whitehead, Gönül Bozoğlu, Susannah Eckersley and Mads Daugbjerg

  19. Final Thoughts: Dimensions of Heritage and Collectivity

Christopher Whitehead, Gönül Bozoğlu, Mads Daugbjerg and Susannah Eckersley


About the Editors

Christopher Whitehead is Professor of Museology at Newcastle University, UK, and Professor II in Cultural Heritage Studies at the University of Oslo, Norway. He publishes on the theory and politics of museums heritage and memory to inform critical and innovative practice. He co-ordinated the Horizon 2020 CoHERE (Critical Heritages of Europe) project from which this book arises.

Susannah Eckersley is a lecturer at Newcastle University, UK, with expertise in museums and difficult heritage, in particular relating to the German past in the present. She was the deputy co-ordinator of the CoHERE project and will lead en/counter/points - a new collaborative research project on culture and integration in Europe from 2019-2022.

Mads Daugbjerg is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Aarhus University, Denmark. His main research concerns the contemporary practices and dynamics relating to cultural and natural heritage, social memory, national and transnational identity and cultural tourism, with a particular interest in performative, experiential and immersive approaches to heritage.

Gönül Bozoglu has a PhD from Humboldt University’s Centre for Anthropological Research on Museums and Heritage (Germany) and works on European and Turkish museums, heritage and memory. After working on the Horizon 2020 CoHERE (Critical Heritages of Europe) project, she has taken up a Leverhulme Fellowship at Newcastle University, UK, to study Greek-Istanbuli memory culture.

About the Series

Critical Heritages of Europe

The Critical Heritages of Europe series seeks to explore the cultural and social politics of the European past in the present. Bridging theoretical and empirical research, the series accommodates broad understandings of Europe – a shifting and historically mutable entity, made both of internal tensions and exogenous encounters, re-imaginings and influences. ‘Heritage’ too is taken as an expansive paradigm, made in myriad practices where the past is valorised for the present, from folk traditions to museums and memorials, the management of historic sites and traditions, and everyday matters such as education, political discourse, home life, food consumption and people’s relations with place.

Books in the series engage with European heritages in critical times – in all senses – when Europe and mobilizations of its heritages and memories are called upon to solve problems, and when contests over the meanings of the past are part of wider social and political relations and tensions. Heritage practices are variously informed by civil and uncivil visions, the politics of difference and co-presence, difficult pasts, relations with the ‘outside’, borders, margins, and migrations. Critical questions include:

  • What is the European past made to do in the present and for the future?
  • What counts as European heritage? To whom, and why?
  • How and why do relationships with, and attitudes to, the past inform identity positions, social orders and moral values in, or in relation to, Europe?
  • When and where in the (wider) world do European heritages configure identities?
  • What are the contemporary meanings and effects of global encounters, mobilities and trajectories in which Europe has played roles?
  • What theoretical and critical perspectives can be articulated to contribute new understandings of European heritages? How might these be made relevant for current and future heritage practice?
  • What are the relations between theory, criticality, ethics and heritage practice in the European dimension?

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / Europe / General
LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Library & Information Science / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Archaeology