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Exhuming Bodies, Producing Knowledge in Contemporary Spain

April 23, 2010IASEvents, | Conferences0

Exhuming Bodies, Producing Knowledge: Collective Memory, Justice, and Restitution in Contemporary Spain

An International, Interdisciplinary Conference,
Part of the Body and Knowing Symposium
of the Institute for Advanced Study

Friday, April 23, 9:00am-6:00pm
Saturday, April 24, 9:30am-6:00pm
100 University International Center (331 17th Avenue SE)

This conference will explore the role that the recent exhumations of mass graves from the Spanish Civil War and subsequent dictatorship have had in the emergence of the movement for the “recovery of historical memory” in Spain. At the beginning of the 21st century, over 30,000 bodies were still interred in mass graves throughout the country. Subsequently, the emergence of civic associations, created by ordinary citizens to undertake exhumations of these graves, has had an enormous impact on Spanish society. In part, the media impact of the exhumations has led to pressure to pass the “Law of Historical Memory” by the Spanish Congress in October 2007, a significant, if insufficient, step towards confronting the legacy of the war and dictatorship in contemporary Spanish society. We will analyze the multiple and complex relations between bodies and knowledge that arise in these exhumations and that explain their political, social, cultural and legal significance in Spain and in other post-authoritarian or post-conflict settings.

Sponsored by: European Studies Consortium, Institute for Advanced Study, Political Science, Spanish & Portuguese, Government of Spain

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