Deindustrialisation and Reinventions NUBS 3.06
Jul 05, 2023 11:00 - 12:30(Europe/London)
20230705T1100 20230705T1230 Europe/London 3.16. Equitable Futures in Industrial Memories II

Industrial communities shape and struggle through changes not only to their landscape, place, and environment, but the means by which such amorphous communities might narrate their own stories, shape collective memory, and dictate industrial heritage. Considering such change not just through a lens of sustainability or authenticity focused upon past culture and experience, but with a keen eye towards equitable futures highlights instead the connectedness of past, present, and future in (post)industrial spaces. Equitable futures for industrial memories can illustrate the connectedness between opening alternative narratives past and present, shaping alternative futures, and the planning and utility of memory and heritage work by self-defined and contested communities in the context of economic and cultural sustainability with varying (in)equitable impacts within and beyond the community. In this session we wish to not only champion equitable means of engaging industrial memory and heritage, but critically reflect upon the very concepts of industrial heritage, collective memory, sustainable heritage, and the industrial community. Such terms are indeed social constructions, shaped through myriad contexts, but have also been at the root of social and environmental inequity and violence. Far from the taken-for-granted benefits of community-based scholarship, heritage work, and sustainable development, we wish to step back and assess the violence of community, heritage, and development in industrial contexts while uplifting memory work aimed at the reduction of harm through equitable futures from industrial memories.While rooted in geographical traditions, we take different approaches to our own questions thinking primarily through industrial transitions, tourism, and herit ...

NUBS 3.06 MSA Conference Newcastle 2023 conference@memorystudiesassociation.org
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Industrial communities shape and struggle through changes not only to their landscape, place, and environment, but the means by which such amorphous communities might narrate their own stories, shape collective memory, and dictate industrial heritage. Considering such change not just through a lens of sustainability or authenticity focused upon past culture and experience, but with a keen eye towards equitable futures highlights instead the connectedness of past, present, and future in (post)industrial spaces. Equitable futures for industrial memories can illustrate the connectedness between opening alternative narratives past and present, shaping alternative futures, and the planning and utility of memory and heritage work by self-defined and contested communities in the context of economic and cultural sustainability with varying (in)equitable impacts within and beyond the community. In this session we wish to not only champion equitable means of engaging industrial memory and heritage, but critically reflect upon the very concepts of industrial heritage, collective memory, sustainable heritage, and the industrial community. Such terms are indeed social constructions, shaped through myriad contexts, but have also been at the root of social and environmental inequity and violence. Far from the taken-for-granted benefits of community-based scholarship, heritage work, and sustainable development, we wish to step back and assess the violence of community, heritage, and development in industrial contexts while uplifting memory work aimed at the reduction of harm through equitable futures from industrial memories.

While rooted in geographical traditions, we take different approaches to our own questions thinking primarily through industrial transitions, tourism, and heritage, as we seek out inter- and transdisciplinary work which also explores the (im)possibilities of equitable futures in industrial memories.



Dr. Amy Walker

"Ideas are the New Coal": Memory and the De-resourcification of Coal and Miners in Mining Communities in Transition

Reflecting on fieldwork in the South Wales coalfield and in the Mitteldeutschland region of Germany, this paper considers the ways in which memory may be mobilised as both reconciliation and mitigation of the detrimental impact of deindustrialisation. The two regions have been historically defined by marginalised coal-mining communities, and experienced the long-standing decline and reorganisation of the coal mining industry, as well as associated industries and infrastructure. In these communities, heritage resources are often organised as an opportunity for redevelopment or as a form of consolation for the loss of community-defining work. Furthermore, the negotiation of memory extends into debates surrounding sustainability, climate change, and processes of resourcification.

This presentation considers how the repositioning of coal occurred during the political upheaval of the British industrial action in the 1980s and reunification of Germany between East and West, as well as in the context of ongoing and planned coal phase-out across the EU. Coal is conflictingly positioned in national discourse as dirty and outdated, as well as vital and, according to posters throughout Mitteldeutschland, ready to be replaced with "new ideas". In turn the coal miners, who were formally the backbone of these industrial communities, are positioned as national heroes, political enemies, or reactionaries hostile towards anti-fossil fuel environmental policies. By attending to forms of collective memory, this presentation aims to illuminate multiple interwoven and diverging histories of coal mining, industrial work, and the communities it has defined, to consider how these histories may inform continuing moves toward equitable post-mining futures.


Dr. Michael Hawkins

Place name, memory, and the link to both football and industrial heritage in the United Kingdom.

Football is an important aspect of cultural heritage for many communities in the United Kingdom. Often football is an integral part of the landscape and is influenced by the industrial heritage of that community. Place name is an important aspect of the link between football and industrial heritage. Physical locations associated with the football club are often linked to important locations in the history of the football club. Those histories are often related to the industry of that region. As English football becomes more of a global phenomenon, it also becomes more corporate with investments from foreign ownership, with ownership that is often not familiar with a town's heritage or landscape. Therefore, this corporatization leads to direct impacts on the built landscape and the community, thus an effect on memory and identity in those communities. Economics of post-industrial communities have meant football clubs have felt lasting effects as well. Often, these ideas can be witnessed in popular documentaries such as Sunderland Till I Die and Welcome to Wrexham. This paper explores the impact of post-industrial economics on memory and identity in football communities and provides a theory on the idea for football clubs and communities to create equitable futures.


Mark Alan Rhodes II

Living Memorials of Industrial Heritage: Named heirlooms and their memory work upon industrial agriculture

Heirloom and heritage agricultural varieties of vegetables, fruit, and grain reflect the modern face of extractive and indifferent industrial agriculture. Part neo-liberalization of subsistence agriculture and part resilient reaction to the hybridized, commercialized, and privatized monocultures dominating industrial agriculture, heirlooms and the agency of heritage varieties navigate their potential futures in complex ways. This study focuses not only upon their (in)ability to resist industrial agriculture, but the role of naming as a process of memorial embeddedness into these varieties. With over 250 varieties of grain, fruit, and vegetable named as a memorial to someone unaffiliated with the variety's development, this study steps back to ask two questions. First, to what extent have these named varieties, these living memorials, navigated our neoliberal foodwebs? Which varieties reflect a deeper heritage of alternative foodways and which were created for the very purpose of extracting capital from embodied memory? Second, how do these living memorials compare to broader trends within memory studies and industrialization? Do their memoryways reflect our standard histories of inequality and inequity within the memorial landscape and industrial heritage or do they escape the trends and offer up more alternative and equitable futures? Combining archival and digital methods and content and narrative analyses, I explore these living memorials within the context of industrial heritage.

Lecturer and Researcher
,
Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg
Assistant Professor, Data Librarian
,
Kent State University
Assistant Professor of Geography
,
Michigan Technological University
 Mark Rhodes
Assistant Professor of Geography
,
Michigan Technological University
Lecturer and Researcher
,
Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg
Assistant Professor
,
Department of Geography and Meteorology, Ball State University
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