Women Mobilizing Memory

Edited by Ayşe Gül Altınay, María José Contreras, Marianne Hirsch, Jean Howard, Banu Karaca, and Alisa Solomon

Columbia University Press

Women Mobilizing Memory

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Pub Date: August 2019

ISBN: 9780231191852

544 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $35.00£27.00

Pub Date: August 2019

ISBN: 9780231191845

544 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $105.00£81.00

Pub Date: August 2019

ISBN: 9780231549974

544 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $34.99£27.00

Women Mobilizing Memory

Edited by Ayşe Gül Altınay, María José Contreras, Marianne Hirsch, Jean Howard, Banu Karaca, and Alisa Solomon

Columbia University Press

Women Mobilizing Memory, a transnational exploration of the intersection of feminism, history, and memory, shows how the recollection of violent histories can generate possibilities for progressive futures. Questioning the politics of memory-making in relation to experiences of vulnerability and violence, this wide-ranging collection asks: How can memories of violence and its afterlives be mobilized for change? What strategies can disrupt and counter public forgetting? What role do the arts play in addressing the erasure of past violence from current memory and in creating new visions for future generations?

Women Mobilizing Memory emerges from a multiyear feminist collaboration bringing together an interdisciplinary group of scholars, artists, and activists from Chile, Turkey, and the United States. The essays in this book assemble and discuss a deep archive of works that activate memory across a variety of protest cultures, ranging from seemingly minor acts of defiance to broader resistance movements. The memory practices it highlights constitute acts of repair that demand justice but do not aim at restitution. They invite the creation of alternative histories that can reconfigure painful pasts and presents. Giving voice to silenced memories and reclaiming collective memories that have been misrepresented in official narratives, Women Mobilizing Memory offers an alternative to more monumental commemorative practices. It models a new direction for memory studies and testifies to a continuing hope for an alternative future.
This volume confirms a shift of paradigm in the field of memory studies, linking it now to the mobilizing force of historical imagination. Without minimizing the devastating effects of violence and destruction, these authors demonstrate that the past is an archive of unlived possibilities and unpursued futures. Time shifts as one reads each of these pieces, grounded in an uncertain aftermath of dictatorship and war, or continuing colonization. They tell histories that release ways of imagining what could have been and even what should have been, experimenting with tense to open political pathways and affirmative politics from the sustained and discerning reflection on abysmal loss. Opposed to revisionism, these authors probe more deeply into the past than positivist histories have ever done, following the flash of possibility into the future. A brilliant, timely, and singular volume. Judith Butler, University of California, Berkeley
This is more than an extraordinary book—it is a fascinating journey around the world. It links the North and Global South through Europe, Chile, Turkey, and the United States in the name of innovative feminist practices able to rethink, reframe, and give new insight into memories of a traumatic past and difficult present. Showing the limitations of institutionalized forms of memorialization, this work truly opens up new paths for alternative forms of knowledge and political resistance. Patrizia Violi, University of Bologna
Reclaiming the word “mobilizing” from its militarized context, the authors of this book set an example of how transnational feminist scholarship can produce much-needed understanding of how memories of painful pasts can be interpreted beyond trauma in an empowering way, offering a livable vision of the future for all. Andrea Pető, Central European University, Budapest
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Practicing Feminism, Practicing Memory, by Marianne Hirsch
Part I. Disrupting Sites
1. Stadium Memories: The Estadio Nacional de Chile and the Reshaping of Space through Women’s Memory, by Katherine Hite and Marita Sturken
2. The Metamorphosis of the Museal: From Exhibitionary to Experiential Complex and Beyond, by Andreas Huyssen
3. Kara Walker: The Memory of Sugar, by Carol Becker
4. Curious Steps: Mobilizing Memory Through Collective Walking and Storytelling in Istanbul, by Bürge Abiral, Ayşe Gül Altınay, Dilara Çalışkan,and Armanc Yıldız
5. Pilgrimage As/Or Resistance, by Nancy Kricorian
Part II. Performing Protest
6. Traumatic Memes, by Diana Taylor
7. Memory as Encounter: The Saturday Mothers in Turkey, by Meltem Ahıska
8. Aquí: Performing Mapping Practices in Santiago de Chile, by María José Contreras Lorenzini
9. #NiUnaMenos (#NotOneWomanLess): Hashtag Performativity, Memory, and Direct Action against Gender Violence in Argentina, by Marcela A. Fuentes
10. Mobilizing Academic Labor: The Graduate Workers of Columbia Unionization Campaign, by Andrea Crow and Alyssa Greene
11. “Nobody Is Going To Let You Attend Your Own Funeral”: A Funeral for a Trans Woman and Naming the Unnamed, by Dilara Çalışkan
12. Black Feminist Visions and the Politics of Healing in the Movement for Black Lives, by Deva Woodly
Part III. Interfering Images
13. Instilling Interference: Lorie Novak’s Frequencies in Traumatic Time, by Laura Wexler
14. Siting Absence: Feminist Photography, State Violence, and the Limits of Representation. by Nicole Gervasio
15. Carrie Mae Weems: Rehistoricizing Visual Memory, by Deborah Willis
16. “When Everything Has Been Said Before . . .”: Art, Dispossession, and the Economies of Forgetting in Turkey, by Banu Karaca
17. Treasures, by Silvina Der-Meguerditchian and Marianne Hirsch
18. Blank: An Attempt at a Conversation, by Susan Meiselas and Işın Önol
Part IV. Staging Resistance
19. Interventionist Theater: Challenging Regimes of Slow Violence, by Jean E. Howard
20. Making Memory: Patricia Ariza’s and Teresa Ralli’s Antígonas, by Leticia Robles-Moreno
21. Theater of the Mothers: Three Political Plays by Marie NDiaye, by Noémie Ndiaye
22. Who Knows Where or When?: AIDS and Theatrical Memory in Queer Time, by Alisa Solomon
Part V. Rewriting Lives
23. El Edificio de los Chilenos (The Building of the Chileans): Heroic Memory Revisited by a Post-Revolutionary Daughter, by Milena Grass Kleiner
24. Remembering “Possibility”: Postmemory and Apocalyptic Hope in Recent Turkish Coup Narratives, by Sibel Irzık
25. Müfide Ferit Tek’s Aydemir Meets Neşide K. Demir, or How Women in Mourning Impede Gendered Memories of a Genocidal Past, by Hülya Adak
26. Hilando en la Memoria: Weaving Songs of Resistance in Contemporary Mapuche Political Cultural Activism, by María Soledad Falabella Luco
List of Contributors
Index

About the Author

Ayşe Gül Altınay is professor of cultural anthropology and director of the Gender and Women’s Studies Center of Excellence at Sabancı University.

María José Contreras is a performance artist and associate professor at the Faculty of the Arts of the Universidad Católica de Chile.

Marianne Hirsch is professor of English, comparative literature, and gender studies at Columbia University.

Jean Howard is professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University.

Banu Karaca is assistant professor of anthropology and a Mercator-IPC Fellow at the Istanbul Policy Center.

Alisa Solomon is professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, where she directs the MA Arts and Culture concentration.