Memoryscapes (digital, locational, imagined) NUBS 3.15
Jul 06, 2023 13:30 - 15:00(Europe/London)
20230706T1330 20230706T1500 Europe/London 7.13. Everyday Memory and Post-industrial Contested Memoryscapes

This panel aims to explore how post-industrial communities negotiate their relationship with their past by responding and adapting to the change of their memoryscapes. The starting point of our exploration stems from two observations. The first observation reminds us, the rupture of the industrial landscapes and the ruins of modernity that this process left behind. The second observation brings to the fore the fact that the violent process of deindustrialisation stripped communities of their social cohesion and the ontological security of their lived environments. As a result, the fast pace of the deindustrialisation process changes the present living conditions and reshapes the significance of the past and the everyday memory of these communities. Current research about the interaction between memory and deindustrialisation tends to focus either on the social impact of deindustrialisation, or on the future of industrial ruins. Drawing upon the idea of memoryscape as social construction, this panel proposes that we can understand how post-industrial communities respond to the newly construed post-industrial memoryscapes, if we explore the symbiotic relationship of industrial ruins with the lived experiences of post-industrial communities.To achieve our aim ,we draw upon our research and engagement with different post-industrial communities nationally (North West and North East of UK), and internationally (Southern Illinois in US) and compare how lived experiences of post industrial communities at different locations describe the relationship of their memories with industrial past. More importantly, we develop in conversation four complementary claims which help us understand how post-industrial memoryscapes are crafted, and how post-industrial communities utilise the ...

NUBS 3.15 MSA Conference Newcastle 2023 conference@memorystudiesassociation.org
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This panel aims to explore how post-industrial communities negotiate their relationship with their past by responding and adapting to the change of their memoryscapes. The starting point of our exploration stems from two observations. The first observation reminds us, the rupture of the industrial landscapes and the ruins of modernity that this process left behind. The second observation brings to the fore the fact that the violent process of deindustrialisation stripped communities of their social cohesion and the ontological security of their lived environments. As a result, the fast pace of the deindustrialisation process changes the present living conditions and reshapes the significance of the past and the everyday memory of these communities. Current research about the interaction between memory and deindustrialisation tends to focus either on the social impact of deindustrialisation, or on the future of industrial ruins. Drawing upon the idea of memoryscape as social construction, this panel proposes that we can understand how post-industrial communities respond to the newly construed post-industrial memoryscapes, if we explore the symbiotic relationship of industrial ruins with the lived experiences of post-industrial communities.

To achieve our aim ,we draw upon our research and engagement with different post-industrial communities nationally (North West and North East of UK), and internationally (Southern Illinois in US) and compare how lived experiences of post industrial communities at different locations describe the relationship of their memories with industrial past. More importantly, we develop in conversation four complementary claims which help us understand how post-industrial memoryscapes are crafted, and how post-industrial communities utilise these memoryscapes to negotiate their relationship with their industrial past from their present living conditions.

The first claim focuses on the role of uncertainty in negotiating the past via everyday memory. Uncertainty occurs when post industrial communities contest between the memories of a place where industry was alive, and the present memories when industry is lost. Following from this, the second claim reminds us that if uncertainty is present in the contestation of memoryscapes, it is important to understand how contested memoryscapes operate as the second argument explains and what they entail for the negotiation of the post-industrial communities' past.

The third claim presents an example of how post industrial memoryscapes can be crafted by introducing the idea of everyday industrial heritage according to which industrial ruins cannot be separated from the memories and the lived experiences of post-industrial communities. The example of the symbiotic relationship between industrial ruins and lived experiences is significant because it underlines the new context where post-industrial memoryscapes develop and what this entails for the future of the post-industrial communities. The fourth claim focuses on the idea of lived experiences among members of post-industrial communities and explores how football at industrial cities such as Newcastle UK, provides the link between the past and present memoryscapes at a city which tries to balance between its industrial past and its post-industrial present and the consequent uncertainty of this balancing act.



Andreas Pantazatos

Mining Heritage: Everyday Memory and Uncertainty

Place evokes memories providing a useful tool about what we remember and how we remember the past. As a result, places play an important role in the making of what is broadly understood as memoryscapes. A good example of memoryscape is our living place. We build different associations and develop social relationships via our living place and at our living place. At the same time, we provide historical narratives rooted in the associations and relationships with our living place. A degree of familiarity with our living space is necessary to locate our memories at this place, and to provide us with ontological security as we navigate through our built and non built environment.
The account of memory and place I sketched can help us understand how we negotiate our relationship with the past in circumstances of certainty, but it does not accommodate the role of uncertainty. In this paper, my aim is to explore the interaction between memory and uncertainty, and the role of this interaction in our relationship with the past. I present my arguments in two parts.
In the first part, drawing upon my research in mining (post industrial) communities at the coalfield of Durham at the North East of UK, I defend the claim that the everyday memory of these communities negotiates the contest of memories between their lives before and after the rupture of deindustrialization. The contest of the everyday memory leads to what I call the 'fog of uncertainty', according to which life at a place that was once seen as attractive is not appealing in the present, even if the place remains the same.
In the second part, reflecting on my research about Durham's Miners Gala, I argue that current post industrial communities negotiate their everyday memory by leading and developing the heritagisation of their own past. In this respect, industrial heritage is a tool to respond to the 'fog of uncertainty' because it adds a new layer to the future memoryscapes of these communities that helps them navigate through change restoring some degree of ontological


Helaine Silverman

Contested Memoryscapes of the Southern Illinois Coalfields

A century ago the southern Illinois coalfields were the locus of dramatic and especially violent labour strife, both of miners rebelling against exploitative mine operators and miner versus miner. The latter has created a contested memoryscape in the region.
Memoryscape is a social construction whose act of creation can be contested by virtue of its claim to locational space and invocation or narration of imagined space. Memory is especially important in reconstructing the past for the present when cues are missing on the landscape. Memorials facilitate memory.
In 1922 a labor dispute in Herrin became so shocking it made the front page of national newspapers and contributed to the county being known as "bloody Williamson." Local union miners murdered outside scab miners brought in by the coal company to break a strike. Although it took almost one hundred years to find the physical evidence of the massacre, knowledge of it had been quietly retained in Herrin where various residents are descendants of the perpetrators or of the mob observers of the event. Following discovery of the bodies private donations enabled the purchase of a fine granite tombstone, inscribed with the names of victims, but not of the donors.
In 2000, more than twenty years before the centennial of the massacre and seemingly with no thought to that future, the entire mining heritage community of Herrin came together to erect in the downtown a very large Coal Miners Memorial inscribed with the names of coal miners who died natural deaths, or in mining accidents, or simply were commemorating their years of service in particular mines surrounding Herrin.
Herrin thus has two coal miner memorials, which construct two very different historical narratives and generate a dialogic memoryscape between them. One memoryscape tells the dominant story of miner pride of occupation. Less than two miles to the east, in the heterotopic space of the potters' field in the municipal cemetery, lay the butchered victims of mob violence, now recovered and remembered, but painfully so. Herrin's two memorials contest the past and residents choose which or both memoryscapes


Kieran Gleave

Manchester's Northern Quarter: The Role of 'Everyday Industrial Heritage' in Shifting Post-industrial Memoryscapes

Tangible remains of historic industry surviving from the 18th-20th centuries are omnipresent across contemporary Britain. From Cornwall to the Caledonian Canal, industrial-era housing, transport infrastructure, production sites, warehouses and commercial structures populate our natural and urban landscapes. Whilst some of these structures and landscapes are protected by legislation and serve as dedicated heritage attractions, the vast majority are often uninterpreted and unassuming.
These sites of 'Everyday Industrial Heritage' are homes, places for work and recreation and are familiar sights in local landscapes for many of us today. Their integration into the very fabric of our landscapes necessitates that Everyday Industrial Heritage plays an eminent role in memory creation and renewal for post-industrial communities and individuals. Sites and landscapes populated with Everyday Industrial Heritage, not managed industrial heritage attractions, represent the key points of contact that contemporarily situated post-industrial communities across Britain have with the industrial past. Despite this, the concept of memory in industrial heritage has been primarily consigned to the settings of managed heritage sites and collections or to (de)industrial ruins.

This paper aims to broaden explorations of memory in industrial heritage contexts by examining the explicit and nuanced roles that Everyday Industrial Heritage plays in memory creation and renewal amongst post-industrial communities. Utilising ethnographic, photographic and questionnaire data collected in Manchester's Northern Quarter in July 2022, I explore the roles that Everyday Industrial Heritage can play in the formation, transformation and upholding of post-industrial Memoryscapes.


Josh Bland

How Can a Community Deal with Change? Football, Memory and the Post-Industrial Identity Void in Newcastle

Newcastle-upon-Tyne is a city forged in the fire of industry. Not only was Newcastle's nineteenth century social development predicated on local mining, shipbuilding, and heavy engineering, but these industries themselves were crucial to the process whereby locals constructed civic identities (Nayak, 2003). Since the 1970s, the reorientation of the city's economic base into a service-based economy has seen Newcastle subjected to three destructive social processes: the deconstruction of towns' industrial economic base, the retrenchment of the state's social functions and market-driven urban redevelopment (Hazeldine, 2021). These changes have not only precipitated material social and economic consequences, but the loss of the city's foundational industries has also undermined citizens' ability to forge civic identity and positive affective ties with their home city and memoryscape.
In lieu of the material and institutional culture of industry that once defined the town, Newcastle's football club – Newcastle United F.C. - represents one of the only remaining institutions in the city which is instantly recognisable to outsiders, generates tangible communities of belonging and continues to operate beyond the industrial historical moment which birthed it. In the modern context, the club not only acts as a cultural representative of Newcastle, but its function as a repository of memory, hub of community activity and link back to the industrial era suggests its potential to act as a crucial pillar for the formation of stable place identity (Gomez-Bantel, 2016).
Drawing upon data from my PhD research, which focuses on Newcastle United F.C. as a case study, I want to explore whether support of a local football club may help communities living in a post-industrial city foster a connection to the town memoryscape itself. By extension, I want to explore whether any stable civic identity formed in connection to the club may ultimately go some way to filling the post-industrial identity void in Newcastle.


University Assistant Professor in Heritage Studies
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University of Cambridge
Dr./Professor
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University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
PhD Student
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University of Cambridge Department of Archaeology
PhD Researcher
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University of Cambridge
University Assistant Professor in Heritage Studies
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University of Cambridge
Lecturer
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Fukuyama City University
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