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How long does it take? 2010 : How long does it take? When, why and how do democratic societies remember and address historical injustices perpetrated against minorities?


When N/A
Where N/A
Abstract Registration Due Jul 5, 2010
Submission Deadline TBD
Categories    memory   minorities   violence   injustice

Call For Papers

How long does it take?
When, why and how do democratic societies remember and address historical injustices perpetrated against minorities?

The histories of many contemporary democratic societies are marked by the victimisation of ethnic, religious, social or political minorities. Often such injustices happened under previous (undemocratic) regimes. In some societies, such as Germany (in relation to Jews) or New Zealand (in relation to Maori), the public acknowledgment of the suffering of certain minorities has arguably become a cornerstone of national identity. In others, such as Indonesia (in relation to members of the Communist Party), there may be only brief windows of opportunity to remember and address historical injustices. In others again, such as Turkey (in relation to Armenians), the crimes perpetrated against minorities have barely been publicly remembered.

Why and how do democratic societies remember and forget the victimisation of minorities in the past? We are interested in papers that engage with the issue of the time lag between the injustice suffered by a minority group, and the redress, apology or public memorialisation authorised or demanded by the majority or at least broader sections of society than the victims or their descendants. Is it possible to identify tipping points at which the remembering becomes more important than the forgetting or vice versa? Are particular conditions necessary for addressing traumatic aspects of a collective past?

We welcome case studies that explore these questions, as well as papers that adopt a broader theoretical perspective. We are particularly interested in contributions that take a comparative approach.

Please send an abstract (300 to 500 words) and a brief bio to Kate McGregor ( You can also contact Kate if you have any questions prior to the submission of your abstract. We will acknowledge receipt of all abstracts submitted. If you do not receive a reply within a week, please re-send. We will send out invitations for the submission of full manuscripts by 20 July 2010. The deadline for manuscripts will be in early November 2010.

A selection of papers will be published in the peer-reviewed interdisciplinary journal Time and Society. Should we decide to solicit more papers than could be accommodated in that journal, we will approach a book publisher.

Closing date for abstracts: 5 July 2010

Dr Kate McGregor
Institute for Social Research
Swinburne University of Technology

Prof Klaus Neumann
Institute for Social Research
Swinburne University of Technology

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