Modern Languages Open (Aug 2020)

Agonistic Memory and the UNREST Project

  • Anna Cento Bull,
  • Hans Lauge Hansen

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 0, no. 1


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This paper reflects on some of the findings from a Horizon 2020 research project, Unsettling Remembering and Social Cohesion in Transnational Europe (UNREST, Horizon 2020, funded 2016–2019,, which aimed to test and apply an agonistic mode of remembering in different settings. The analysis focuses on the potential advantages of promoting agonistic representations of past conflicts in museums through the adoption of ‘radical multiperspectivism’, as opposed to the ‘consensual multiperspectivism’ informing most contemporary exhibitions and displays. The paper argues that such an approach, which foregrounds socio-political passions by drawing on both artistic interventions and contrasting narratives, can deepen visitors’ understanding of violent conflicts and help counter the growing shift towards antagonistic memory, by turning enemies into adversaries.