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Public lecture: Trajectories of deindustrialization and the memoryscapes of industrial pasts – Towards global perspectives

Keynote with simultaneous translation / Conférence avec traduction simultanée
1:30 PM, Thursday 1 Sep 2022 (1 hour 30 minutes)
Break   03:00 PM to 03:30 PM (30 minutes)

This lecture will argue that the landscapes of industrial heritage that can be found in different parts of the world are directly related to the place-specific trajectories of deindustrialization. In other words: the different ways in which deindustrialization impacts on local communities has a direct bearing on the emergence of forms of industrial heritage. I will differentialte between deindustrialization paths and related industrial heritage regimes in a) Anglo-Saxon countries, b) continental West European countries, c) post-Communist East European countries, d) capitalist countries in the global south, e) post-Communist countries in the global south, and f) China as an officially Communist country developing a turbo-capitalist system under the label ‘socialism with a Chinese face’. 

As industrial heritage amounts to a form of memorialization of industrial pasts, the memoryscapes that are inherent in these six different industrial heritage regimes reveal the power structures that have determined the pathways of deindustrialization but they can also represent the resistance to such pathways of deindustrialization. Hence we often encounter pluralistic and multiperspectival memories that are contained in industrial heritage sites. I will relate the memoryscapes of deindustrialization to three different memory regimes: antagonistic memory, cosmopolitan memory and agonistic memory. Drawing on the theory of agonistic memory, as it was developed by Anna Cento Bull and Hans Lauge Hansen, I will argue in favour of agonistic memories of deindustrialization as these are more capable in politicizing industrial heritage landscapes and giving voice to those who seek to represent working-class communities in their struggle to counter the negative effects of deindustrialization on their respective communities.


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