CULTURE UNBOUND: Journal of Current Cultural Research

Special Issue:

Uses of the Past – Nordic historical cultures in comparative perspective
Nordic cultural representations have a historical reputation that stretches from an older bellicose layer to a modern welfare dimension. Images and narratives span the Vikings and the Thirty Years’ War to a Nordic welfare state characterized by a generous public sector, gender equality, strong child protection and so on – all of which are communicated within Norden and abroad. The Nordic states themselves have had rather varied experiences of statehood and violence which, in spite of similarities in political culture, are thus reflected in different historical cultures. Class, gender and regional differences are negotiated – but at different nodes in the historical culture and with diverse stories reaching hegemonic strength. Perhaps there is less in common than the Scandinavian rhetoric suggests? Studies of the uses of the past have for more then a decade been a prominent trait of cultural research when it comes to such fields as nationalism, monuments, museums, commemoration and popular culture. Too seldom, however, have empirical and theoretical contributions from the Nordic countries been placed into a dialogue with international research. Two exceptions to this rule are Holocaust studies and research on national museums. These reveal a new drive for comparative reflection – something that this CFP seeks to build on. A comparative outlook on the uses of the past is therefore open both for intra-Nordic and international comparative stances relating to:

– images of Nordic history produced in Europe and overseas
– institutionalised historical culture in museums negotiating politics and knowledge
– public debates on uses of the past, construction of canons and curricula
– the public role of the past in celebrations, jubilees and education
– the popular uses of the past in re-enactments, local societies and theme parks
The call is open for articles on topics pertaining to uses of the past in the comparative cross-road of research on historical cultures both in and on contemporary and historical Nordic societies.
Abstracts and expressions of interest, of no more than 250 words, can be sent to the editor, Peter Aronsson.

CULTURE UNBOUND: JOURNAL OF CURRENT CULTURAL RESEARCH is a new peerreviewed academic journal for border-crossing cultural research, including cultural studies as well as other interdisciplinary and transnational currents. It is globally open to articles from all areas in thislarge field, easily accessible for downloading as open access, and a forum with a wider scope than existing journals for cultural studies or other, more specific subfields of cultural research.