This volume pursues a new line of research in cultural memory studies by understanding memory as a performative act in art and popular culture. The authors take their cue from the observation that art and popular culture enact memory and generate processes of memory. They do memory, and in this doing of memory new questions about the cultural dimensions of memory arise: How do art objects and artistic practices perform the past in the present? What is their relationship to the archive? Does the past speak in the performed past (or do we speak to it)? To what purpose do objects "recall"? And for whom do they recollect?
Here authors combine a methodological focus on memory as performance with a theoretical focus on art and popular culture as practices of remembrance. The essays in the book thus analyze what is at stake in the complex processes of remembering and forgetting, of recollecting and disremembering, of amnesia and anamnesis, that make up cultural memory.
"Moving from embodied to externalized, from generational to historical and spectral memories, this collection of essays discusses challenging methodological problems that can revitalize the study of memory." -- Aleida Assmann, Universität Konstanz, Germany
1. Performing Memory in Art and Popular Culture: An Introduction Liedeke Plate and Anneke Smelik Part I: Staging Memory 2. Life or Theatre, Diary or Drama: On the Performance of Memory in the Visual Arts Lisa Saltzman 3. Multidirectional Memory and the Implicated Subject: On Sebald and Kentridge Michael Rothberg 4. Phantom Pains: Dramatising Flemish Collaboration with Nazism Klaas Tindemans Part II: Spectral Memories 5. Memories of Catastrophes Yet To Come: New Brutalism and Thing-Memory Ben Highmore 6. Haunted by Hunger: Images of Spectrality in Literary Recollections of the Great Irish Famine, 1850-1900 Marguérite Corporaal 7. Naming the Unnameable: (De)constructing 9/11’s Falling Man László Munteán Part III: Embodied Memories 8. If These Walls Could Walk: Architecture as a Deformative Scenography of the Past Kris Pint 9. Bodies With(out) Memories: Strategies of Re-enactment in Contemporary Dance Timmy de Laet Part IV: Mediating Memories 10. Punctuating National Histories: History Painting and Performativity Louise Wolthers 11. ‘Forget Me Not’: The Performance of Memory in Xena: Warrior Princess Wim Tigges 12. Textures of Time: A Becoming-Memory of History in Costume Film Elise Wortel and Anneke Smelik