Dr. Borislava Manojlovic, Professor of Conflict Analysis and Resolution, presented her research on Historical Narrative and Representations of the Collective Trauma of Guernica at the Recognition Reparation Reconciliation – The Light and Shadow of Historical Trauma Conference, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa (December 5-9, 2018). She also chaired a panel at the conference titled “Just another tale of volatile times: Making sense of experiences with transformation in higher education.”
The conference aimed to deepen understanding of the transgenerational repercussions of traumatic pasts in a range of cultural contexts, to explore how different disciplines represent this transgenerational phenomenon, and through a comparative lens, to contribute to new knowledge production in this area of research. The starting point is that engaging in this comparative reflection is more essential than ever, to advance scholarship and to create a new archive that understands memory and traumatic pasts as transnational and cross-cultural. The discussions were focused on strategies that might quell the haunting repercussions of genocide, slavery, colonial oppression, and mass violence that play out in the lives of affected individuals and groups from both sides of these acts.
Dr. Manojlovic said in her presentation, “Awareness of the selectivity of memory and the cyclical nature of historical narrative is the first step to reconciliation. Second step is creation of the political and cultural spaces in which diverging narratives of the past can co-exist despite the differences.”