The Uses and Abuses of Memory
This panel will explore the role of memory, memorials, and narratives in sustaining or ending violence in the Middle East North Africa region, with a specific focus on Palestine and Israel. There are few places on earth where violence and memory are more intertwined than in Palestine and Israel. For centuries, violence has been common, as well, in many other regions around the world where residents eventually came to terms, or at least came to accept, resolutions and arrangements that allowed some resumption of normal life. In some cases, those outcomes relied on erasing memories of the history of conflicts while in other regions, such as North America and South Africa, resolutions were achieved by recognizing, in at least some measure, historical injustices committed against indigenous populations, which in turn led to various forms of reparations. Four experts on violence in the MENA region will review the particular dynamics of memory in Palestine and Israel, how those memories shaped the past, and explore how approaches informed by the social sciences could reveal opportunities for a less violent future.
In a short conversation with Hal Plotkin, Michel Wieviorka will review the contents and findings of the IPEV Live panel discussions and reports and provide his observations and recommendations for future efforts. Wieviorka is the distinguished former president of the International Sociological Association (2006-2010) and president emeritus of Fondation Maison des Sciences d’lhomme, which organized the International Panel on Exiting Violence.