A workgroup and a workshop directed by Juan Gutiérrez about the collective creation of shared memory, the subjectivity of memories and their relation with History. Specifically, concepts such as "paz de vida", violence and negative peace will be addressed.
“Commons memory could be something like a collective memory open to all, to be shared by as many people as can benefit from it, in endless enrichment, where anybody can contribute; a memory that helps each one of us to understand some key elements of our world and guide us within it. It belongs to everyone and no one.
Commons memory is the memory of something that is no longer evident, that is in danger and needs protection, also of something we can enrich by creating the tools that will enable us to do so.
Everyone has and keeps remembrances of something that has happened, something that was lived more or less directly or that has been transmitted. Memory is a fabric made of remembrances, which remain not individual but become collective ones, shareable and with a meaning. Memory is a collective construction of remembrances which supports collectives to pave their way.
Memory must not be contrasted with history as something subjective, irresponsible and full of myths as opposed to something scientific, objective, true and provable, because history also has its subjective burden, it is influenced by the dominant power, it includes myths and leaves aside immense parts of lived reality.
Memory accompanies history gathering issues that are important, but that history itself leaves aside, and invites history to enter them using its scientific instruments of definition and verification in order to confirm or redirect them.
Memory also is what is burning in history, what we question of it because we care and because we do not accept the version that we are given of it without questioning.
By constructing memory we bring attention to things that had not attracted attention. Thus we mobilize memories that had so far remained hidden and quite in citizenship.
This project is intended to construct memory of life peace, that – interwoven with violence and negative peace - has been a component of our reality since 1936 to 1978, but that has been excluded, up until now, of the memory construction of that reality – both from the official memory coined by Franco’s regime and from the memory constructed by the MRMH (The Movement for the Recuperation of Historic Memory)-.
This project assumes that in this life peace we find the quintessence of what is common, because this peace that one human being gives another – we can use as an example/icon the mother that conceives in a child in her womb and nurtures it -, is what holds the world together. We have to remember it (peace) to build with those remembrances Commons memory.
However, the labor of this life peace does not attract attention, remembering is not being used to build memory. Remembering is not being used because there are constant reencounters, it appears to be evident, nothing is left behind. Neither memory nor history of this labor are being constructed, because mothers have always given life to their children, this has been always the case, it is taken for granted and nobody fears that they will cease to do so. This life peace makes life possible, it maintains the world united, it holds history, it is poetic, it knows how to rebel. But being the eternal sister to negative peace, she is an invisible sister, one that rarely receives any attention. What remains of her are generally dispersed memories with anecdotal value, almost in the manner of curiosities or oddities. With them memory is not built and they do not emerge in history during normal times. But today we need the support of this memory to open a path to the future.
That is the challenge of this project: to bring to light remembances of the labor of lived peace, make them public, understand by interpreting their sense, thus building a memory that inspires and educates towards an interactive conviviality of mutual respect, aid, understanding and affect".
The workshop will combine theoretical sessions, such as presentations and debates of the different topics related to commons memory, with practical work sessions, where we will discuss and share stories told by the participants.
The workshop is organized in 4 stages; this does not exclude possible interim reunions.
1st Reunion: presentation of the project and the participants.
Talk that will introduce the notion of commons related to memory
Talk on the relation history-memory
The guests from Madrid, or that can make it to Madrid, will explain their approach and what they plan to do during the workshop.
17.01.2012 / 10 am - 2 pm: Seminar with Svetlana Broz (English without translation). [+info]
29.11.2012 / 17:00h: Sharing session about the present, the past and the future of this work group. [+info]
07.04.2013 / 17:00h: Presentation by Cristina Sánchez-Carretero, professor of Anthropology at the Institute of Patrimony Sciences in Santiago de Compostela around the concept of memory as patrimony, its creation, dissemination and preservation. [+info]
The call is open to everybody who would like to participate, bearing in mind that it might be limited to an optimal number of people to work in groups, we propose approximately 25 people per group.
The inscriptions will require the participants to state their motivations and expectations.