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Memorial Sites in Post-communist Europe

Venue: Birkbeck Main Building, Malet Street

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Join us for the fifth seminar in the series on Memorial Sites: Acts of remembering through media and visual culture. We welcome discussant, Piotr Cieplak (University of Sussex), and speakers, Ljiljana Radonin (PI ERC project “Globalised Memorial Museums”, Vice-director of the Institute of Culture Studies and Theatre History, Austrian Academy of Sciences), Zuzanna Dziuban (ERC project Globalized Memorial Museums, Austrian Academy of Sciences), and Ivo Plsek (Masaryk University).

The session includes three talks:

  • Globalized Memorial Museums – Victim Hierarchies and Travelling Musealization Trends, Ljiljana Radonin
  • Forensic Reframings of Museums and Memorial Sites at the former Nazi Camps, Zuzanna Dziuban
  • Lidice – From “Ground Zero” to the Present, Ivo Plsek

Welcome to this event organised by Marcos Centeno (University of Valencia. Birkbeck, University of London) as part of the BIRMAC series on Memorial sites, in partnership with:
Repercri (Contemporary Representations of Perpetrators of Mass Crimes),
Frankfurt Memory Studies Platform,
TRAME (Center for the Semiotic Study of Memory),
Perpetrator Studies Network
CITur (Cinema Imaginary and Tourism)

Contact name:

  • Ivo Plsek
  • Ljiljana Radonic -

    MA in political science and philosophy as well as in translation studies (Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian and English) at the University of Vienna. 2006–2009 PhD fellowship at the Initiativkolleg „Cultures of Difference. Transformation Processes in the Central European Region“. PhD graduation in 2009 at the University of Vienna. Since 2004 lecturer at the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna. 2009-2013 postdoc-coordinator of the PhD program „Austrian Galicia and its Multicultural Heritage“ funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) at the University of Vienna. Visiting professor at Gießen University in Germany in the summer semester 2015: Interdisciplinary professorship for Critical Theory of the Society. Research fellow at the International Research Center for Cultural Studies (IFK) in the winter semester 2016/17. In the summer semester 2017 visiting professor at the Centre for Jewish Studies, Graz University. Since 2013 employed at the Institute of Culture Studies and Theatre History (IKT) at the Austrian Academy of Sciences - first within the context of her habilitation project about World War II in Post-Communist Memorial Museums (from 2013-2017 APART post-doc fellowship at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, 2018/19 funded by the Elise-Richter-Program of the Austrian Science Fund – FWF). 2020 habilitation at the Department of Political Science at the University of Vienna. She was then awarded an European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grant in 2018 and heads a project on "Globalized Memorial Museums. Exhibiting Atrocities in the Era of Claims for Moral Universals" from 2019-2024. Since 2021 group leader at IKT (ERC project). Since 2019 member of the Young Academy of the ÖAW. Since 2023 member of the Austrian delegation to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).

  • Piotr Cieplak -

    Piotr is a filmmaker, writer and academic. He obtained his PhD and MPhil from the University of Cambridge and, prior to joining Sussex, held positions at SOAS (University of London), Africa Research Institute and Brunel University London.

    Piotr's films have won awards and screened widely at international film festivals, conference and TV. The Faces We Lost (2017) - Piotr's research documentary about how Rwandans use personal and family photographs to remember and commemorate their loved ones who died during the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi - was nominated for the Best Research Film at the 2018 AHRC Film Awards and won the 2018 British Association of Film, Television and Screen Studies Best Practice-as-Research Award (runner-up).

    In 2018, Piotr was awarded the British Academy's Rising Star Engagement Award for a project: "Public deaths, private archives: image-based commemoration and remembrance in Rwanda and the Global South'

    Piotr’s work combines academic research and creative practice and is concerned with the interaction between memory and the still and moving image, especially in the context of the depiction of genocide, political violence, mourning and individual and collective trauma in film and professional and domestic photography. His focus is primarily, but not exclusively, on Africa and South America. Piotr’s research also touches on the politics of representation when it comes to portrayals of non-Western conflict, victimhood and violence, and issues of voyeurism, permission, transgression, witnessing and perspective.

    Piotr has written extensively about image-based representation of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, including one of the few monographs on the topic: Death, Image, Memory: The Genocide in Rwanda and Its Aftermath in Photography and Documentary Film (Palgrave, 2017).

    As a practitioner, Piotr is particularly interested in documentary film, scriptwriting, alternative narrative forms and the relationship between image and sound. 

  • Zuzanna Dziuban -

    MA in cultural studies at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland, where she also studied philosophy. PhD in cultural studies in 2009 at the same university. 2011-2012 postdoctoral fellowships from the DAAD and Max Planck Forschungspreis (Prof. Aleida Assmann) at the University of Konstanz. 2012 Fritz-Thyssen Stiftung fellowship at the Humboldt University in Berlin and House of the Wannsee Conference. 2012-2014 Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung fellowship at the University of Konstanz (Research Group ‘Geschichte & Gedächtnis’) and Humboldt University of Berlin. 2013 research fellowship at the Herder-Institut für historische Ostmitteleuropaforschung, Marburg, in the framework of the research project ‘GEOIMAGINARIES - Digital Atlas of Geopolitical Imaginaries of East Central Europe in the 20th Century’. 2013-2014 Postdoctoral fellowship at the International Institute for Holocaust Research, Yad Vashem, Europe Research Stay, Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung fellowship. 2014-2015 Postdoctoral fellow at the Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies. 2015-2017 Postdoctoral researcher at the University of Konstanz and research fellow at the Amsterdam School for Heritage and Memory Studies, the University of Amsterdam, with a position founded by the DAAD/Marie-Curie cofound program P.R.I.M.E. 2016-2019 Postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the School for Heritage, Memory and Material Culture, University of Amsterdam, and Freie University of Berlin, iC-ACCESS /HERA “Uses of the Past” project. 2016-2017 visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study, Kulturwissenschaftliches Kolleg, University of Konstanz. Since 2016 affiliated researcher at the ACCESS EUROPE Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence, Amsterdam (European Identity and Culture). 2019-2024 senior postdoc in the ERC Consolidator project "Globalized Memorial Museums. Exhibiting Atrocities in the Era of Claims for Moral Universals".