Head of the Organising Committee
Sanna Turoma
sanna.turoma [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Coordinator
Kaarina Aitamurto
kaarina.aitamurto [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Secretary
Maarit Elo-Valente
maarit.elo-valente [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Intern
Miikka Piiroinen
miikka.piiroinen [at] helsinki.fi

Conference e-mail:
fcree-aleksconf [at] helsinki.fi

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki
phone +358-(0)50-3565 802

aleksanteri [at] helsinki.fi


Past Aleksanteri Conferences

Maria Matskevich (Sociological Institute of Russian Academy of Sciences)

Collective Memory as a Resource in Conflicts

There are a lot of situations when a common past and a common collective memory become a problem if there are conflicts. The states of the former USSR give us plenty of examples, especially when the given state had been a part not only of the USSR but of the Russian Empire as well. Now they need to construct their own history and history schoolboks separate from the imperial ones and they inevitably meet many issues, as Marc Ferro had shown in his well-know book. Some ex-USSR countries are involved in conflits with Russia over their past, but they also have issues with collective memory within themselves. For instance, the generational gaps are tremendous sometimes, as sociological surveys and opinion polls reveal. The common memories, at the same time, present issues and become a political resource. For instance, in the Ukranian-Russian confrontation the memory resources are widely used by both parts outside and inside the states. Each political force pretends to be the only might labeling their enemies 'fascist', inside and outside the country. The point is that there is still not a generation in Ukraine and Russia which could neglect such label and some other labels traced to their common past because the common collective memory is still prevailing.