Transnational and Global Dimensions of Justice and Memory Processes in Europe and Latin America

Transnational and Global Dimensions of Justice and Memory Processes in Europe and Latin America

University of Paris Ouest Nanterre, Institute for Social Sciences of Politics (ISP), Paris; University of Exeter
From - Until
08.06.2017 - 09.06.2017
Natalie Taylor

Justice and memory processes that had accompanied the “third wave of democratisation” have been the subject of a large body of academic literature. These works have commonly taken certain approaches. Some have analysed these processes within national borders or by providing comparative accounts of countries seen as discrete units, disconnected from transnational or global developments. Others, by contrast, have tried to account for the criminalization of dictatorships and conflicts in terms of the emergence of international norms based on an ethics of human rights and a “cosmopolitan memory” – often driven by a decontextualized remembrance of the Holocaust. This scholarship has however tended to overgeneralize global trends without always grasping the complexity of local attempts at dealing with the past. In the last ten years, a third approach, focusing on specific transnational entanglements, has gained ground. This emerging literature has started to analyze empirically transnational activism, exchanges of knowledge and expertise at bilateral, regional or international levels, the impact of legal and mnemonic narratives outside their countries of origin, and the role of international organizations and NGOs in dealing with mass violence.

Focusing on Europe and Latin America, this conference aims to take stock of this transnational turn in justice and memory studies and to develop a socio-historical analysis of the circulation of norms, repertoires of collective action and models adopted to deal with the legacies of authoritarian regimes and armed conflicts. It seeks to trace the interconnections and mutual influences of these processes both within Europe and Latin America and between the two regions, as well as the mobilizations of European and Latin American actors in international institutions, global NGOs, or at venues on other continents. The conference welcomes theoretically grounded empirical investigations from a range of different disciplines in the social sciences and the humanities that adopt a critical stance on post-dictatorial/post-conflict justice and memory processes and move beyond abstract and normative perspectives. Possible topics include, but are not restricted to, the following subjects:

- Theoretical perspectives on the study of transnational/global phenomena of dealing with the past.
- The role of Europe and Latin America in globalizing narratives and norms of dealing with the past.
- Circulation of ideas across national borders in various professional and social fields (e.g. law, memorialization sites and practices, historiography, forensics etc.).
- The role of transnational advocacy networks/epistemic communities/professional associations.
- Victims’ activism in transnational perspective (forms of mobilization, cooperation/competition, appropriation of representation etc.).
- The interplay between various places and scales of mobilization: how are processes aimed at dealing with the past articulated on national, transnational, regional and global levels?
- Re-appropriation and resistance of local actors to ideas and paradigms originating in other national or global venues.

Please submit your proposal including authors’ names, email addresses and affiliations, a short CV and an abstract of around 300 words by 10 January 2017 to: The conference organizers will provide a response to the proposals by 30 January 2017. Selected participants will be invited to submit their papers (max. 7,000 words including tables, figures, and references) by 10 May 2017.

A selection of papers will be published in English, in a special issue of an international academic journal. Funding opportunities for travel and accommodation are available, but we ask that contributors also explore funding opportunities at their home institutions. The conference is organized by the University of Paris Ouest Nanterre, the Institut de Sciences Sociales du Politique (CNRS), and the University of Exeter. The Cluster of Excellence LABEX Pasts in the Presents (France) and the Arts and Humanities Research Council – Care for the Future (UK) support the event within the joint funded project The Criminalization of Dictatorial Pasts in Europe and Latin America in Global Perspective


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Raluca Grosescu

Laure Neumayer
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