Editors' welcome, PORTAL, Vol 7, No 1, January 2010

Paul Allatson


Abstract

‘Fields of Remembrace,’ is a special issue of PORTAL Journal of Multidisciplinary International Studies guest-edited by Matthew Graves (University of Provence) and Elizabeth Rezniewski (University of Sydney). The issue focuses on what the guest editors call the ‘world-wide turn to commemoration in recent years,’ which is typified by the diverse drives by states, organisations, institutions and interest groups to reclaim spaces for overlooked, disputed and/or rehistoricised and refashioned memories in ways that appear to place memory at discursive odds with history. Taking a transcultural rather than transnational approach to the memory-history dyad, and attending to the potential abuses of history as pasts are rehistoricised and refashioned in line with contemporary political and cultural paradigms, the special issue makes an important contribution to contemporary memory debates. It is also a timely contribution, given the vituperative qualities of so-called history and culture wars in Australia, the USA, many parts of Europe, and throughout many parts of the decolonised world. The contributions to the special issue were first presented at a workshop entitled ‘Histories of Forgetting and Remembering’ in October 2008. The workshop was jointly sponsored by the faculty of Arts at the University of Sydney, which hosted the event, and the Transforming Cultures Research Centre at the University of Technology Sydney.

The special issue is dedicated to the memory of François Poirier (1947-2010), Director of the Centre for Intercultural Research in the English- and French-speaking Worlds, at the University of Paris XIII, who showed the way as one of the first scholars in France to work on the transnational dimension of memory studies: ‘Whispering lunar incantations / Dissolve the floors of memory’ (TS Eliot).

Keywords

Allatson; memory studies; Portal Journal of Multidisciplinary International Studies: Article Review Request

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