Utopian Dreams or Practical Possibilities? The Challenges of Evaluating the Impact of Memorialization in Societies in Transition

Brandon Hamber, Liz Ševčenko, Naidu Ereshnee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

For countries rebuilding in the wake of violence and repression, memorials, museums and places of memory represent a critical terrain where the past is confronted and conflict can be addressed. Memorialization, however, has not always been as intentional and strategic as other transitional justice practices, and evaluation of its impact is limited. This article focuses on the work of the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience and an evaluation of the youth programs of three of its members: the Liberation War Museum in Bangladesh, the Monte Sole Peace School in Italy and the Villa Grimaldi Peace Park in Chile. The evaluation found that the sites had a number of impacts on the young people who visited them, including changing opinions, raising awareness, improving relationships, encouraging civic engagement and increasing emotional understanding of the human consequences of atrocity. The article questions how such impacts relate to wider social processes (for example, human rights reform, violence prevention and transitional justice) and how social and political processes affect the potential for individual and group impacts. It argues that transitional processes can make better use of the specific resources memorial sites have to offer.
LanguageEnglish
Pages397-420
JournalInternational Journal of Transitional Justice
Volume4
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2010

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memorial
society
museum
peace
liberation war
justice
evaluation
violence
youth program
conscience
repression
social process
Bangladesh
Chile
coalition
Italy
human rights
reform
resources
school

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Utopian Dreams or Practical Possibilities? The Challenges of Evaluating the Impact of Memorialization in Societies in Transition. / Hamber, Brandon; Ševčenko, Liz; Ereshnee, Naidu.

In: International Journal of Transitional Justice, Vol. 4, No. 2, 01.11.2010, p. 397-420.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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