• 17.06.2022 - 18.06.2022
  • 🇩🇪 Deutschland / Greifwald
  • Research area "The Topicality of Cultural Heritage" of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Baltic Sea Research (IFZO), University of Greifswald
  • zur Website

Tidal Recall. Maritime Sites of Memory in the Baltic Sea Region

In the last two decades, a new thassology—a term coined and interpreted as maritime-based historiography of seas and oceans, introduced particularly by Peregrine Horden and Nicolas Purcell (2000; 2006)—proved very influential. It helped comprehend seas and seashores as historical spaces on a global as well as regional scale. Seas, harbours, shores, and objects related to those maritime environments have been envisioned as cultural crossroads, spaces of trade and conquest, sites of arrival, exile, disapora, or withdrawal. Hybridity and fluidity characterised the spatial structures of such sites. Less attention has been paid, however, to the impact of memory on the constitution of maritime spaces and places.

The workshop aims to discuss possible intersections of two aspects of maritime memory represented by two prominent notions: on the one hand, the concept of the lieu de mémoire originally based on Pierre Nora’s approach, and thassology on the other. Lieu de mémoire initially favoured a national perspective on places, concepts, and related objects of memory. However, the entangled and hybrid cultures of the sea and the shores refer to transnational spaces and need to be conceptualised accordingly, as Astrid Erll argued. We are convinced that they have to be perceived as shared sites from a regional and, more extensively, global angle. Thus, maritime sites of memory interweave, interfere, and expand multilaterally. A particular sense of liminality also defines them as border crossings, spaces in-between. Therefore, the notion of maritime sites of memory can be conceived as appropriate for exploring a more dynamic understanding of regions in their historical and contemporary perspectives.

With a particular focus set on the Baltic Sea region, we want to examine concepts of maritime lieu de mémoire related to but not limited to following questions:

  • What are maritime sites of memory in respect to the Baltic Sea region?
    How are those phenomena situated between national and supra-national/regional re-evaluation and related alignments? How does the concept of memory sites change in the age of globalization and the postcolonial context?
    Are maritime sites of memory more suitable for the conceptualization of transit processes and spaces such as migration and diaspora?
  • Do we have to distinguish between shared sites of shores, seas, islands, and, thus, to differentiate between various types of maritime lieu de mémoire?
  • How are such shared sites framed, narrativized, practised, or artistically shaped?

We invite papers that broaden and allow us to re-think the concept of lieu de mémoire regarding maritime sites, places, and objects in the Baltic Sea region and which foster the understanding of regional trajectories in a global framework.