3 November 2020

"Nature as a space of commemoration in the Jewish-Israeli memory culture" (PhD dissertation, Marie Piekarska)

The project, rooted in material-semiotic approach to memory studies and combining them with environmental humanities, contemplates two phenomena – environmental memorial as a national text of culture, and nature’s agency as part of such mnemonic assemblages. Tracking the continuous, yet evolving, Jewish-Israeli culture of remembrance in natural spaces since state’s creation till today, the analysed commemorations are examined as memorials that engage organic material as both the building and the symbolically signifying substance. As such, they strongly associate the object of commemoration with socially constructed pastoral features of nature, therefore naturalizing the represented national past. Additionally, their organic substance significantly influences the commemorative outcomes, often disrupting them."