International conference V: Nostalgia on the Move

International conference V: Nostalgia on the Move
Museum of Yugoslav History, Belgrade, Serbia
29-30 September 2016

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Nostalgia is present in a variety of manifestations in different niches of contemporary culture. This concept has grasped the attention of researchers who have traced it in a wide range of appearances from media, popular culture, marketing, politics, personal memories, in an attempt to understand how we commemorate and remember our past, and what is the role of nostalgia in these processes. On the other hand, the spread of nostalgia throughout post-communist countries has often been looked upon as a kind of maladjustment to the present and its requirements. Nevertheless, more than a few researchers have proposed that we should listen more carefully to messages conveyed by nostalgic narratives and practices.

The Museum of Yugoslav History is one of the key places of remembrance of Yugoslavia. Within its premises is the House of Flowers where Josip Broz Tito was buried. It attracts many visitors and curious tourists but also numerous Tito’s admirers who still commemorate dates that were respected or celebrated in Socialistic Yugoslavia. The central motif of yugonostalgia and titostalgia is the celebration of May 25 that was in time of SFR Yugoslavia the main celebration of Tito’s birthday and the Day of Youth. More than three decades after Tito’s death and two decades after the dissolution of Yugoslavia, the celebration is still living, but it is no longer organized by the state authorities, but by individual memory keepers and their associations. These personal memories are often at odds with discourses reinforced by official narratives.

By organizing the conference we would like to address the following questions and topics: representations of nostalgia, nostalgia and museums/heritage sites, musealization of nostalgia, performing nostalgia, commercialization of nostalgia, nostalgia and identity, political dimension of nostalgia.

Furthermore, we aim to use this as an opportunity to test our own methods and approaches and confront different attitudes towards ethical issues that we as museum professionals face. The conference is to gather researchers from different disciplines, artists, curators to join us in discussion on key issues and dilemmas underlining our/museum work: how we should deal with nostalgia in heritage sites and what challenges museums are confronting when dealing with nostalgia.

We feel this will also be a fruitful opportunity for others interested in the matters of memory, remembrance and nostalgia.

More information will be available on www.mij.rs

PROGRAMME (download programme here)

Thursday, 29. 9. 2016 

15:30–16:00 Registration of participants

16:00–16:30 Welcome speech
Neda Knežević MA, director of the Museum of Yugoslav History and representative of the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Serbia

16:30–17:30 Guided tour through MYH

17:30–18:00 Coffee break

18:00–19:30 Who’s afraid of nostalgia?  Political potentials of nostalgia
Dr. Mitja Velikonja: Ideological potentials of Yugonostalgia
Dr. Tanja Petrović: Why is nostalgia (politically) important; memory of industrial work in socialist Yugoslavia
Dr. Dragan Markovina: The New reading of Yugoslavia: From nostalgia to articulated political resistance

19:30–20:00 Discussion

Friday, 30. 9. 2016

10:00–11:30 Nostalgia – from passive sentimentalism to the possibility of articulated resistance
Dr. Branislav Dimitrijević: Class character of nostalgia
Dr. Ana Hofman: Politics of sentimentality: towards affectivity of post-socialism
Milica Popović, MA: Yugonostalgia – the meta-national memory narratives of the last pioneers

11:30–11:45 Discussion

11:45–12:00 Coffee break

12:00–13:30 Personal memories vs. official narratives – Opposing dominant discourses
Dr. Nevena Skrbić Alempijević: Embodying memory, commemorating the past: the Day of Youth celebrations in Kumrovec
Dr. Muriel Blaive: Writing the history of communism in the Czech Republic: Political correctness vs. nostalgia/retro
Dr. Nikolai Vukov: Former day of socialist victory: The 9th of September in the ritual ceremonies of post-1989 Bulgaria

13:30–14:00 Discussion

14:00–15:15 Lunch

15:15–17:15 Musealization of Nostalgia? – Museum as a Mediator of Memory
Dr. Svetla I. Kazalarska: “Childhood of mine, real and magical.” Post-communist nostalgia at the museum of communism
Marija Đorgović: Museum as a mediator of memory – Dealing with nostalgia in the Museum of Yugoslav History
Nataša Jagdhuhn: Walking heritage. Performance as a method of transmitting confiscated memory and identity
Dr. Nela Milić: Performing Nostalgia

17:15–17:45 Discussion

17:45–18:00 Coffee break

18:00–18:45 Concluding remarks

The conference takes place in the framework of the international interdisciplinary project Heroes We Love. Ideology, Identity and Socialist Art in New Europe supported by the Creative Europe 2014 – 2020 Programme of the European Union and Allianz Kulturstifung.

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