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Publication details for Dr Stefanie Kappler

Kappler, Stefanie (2017). Sarajevo’s Ambivalent Memoryscape: Spatial stories of peace and conflict. Memory Studies 10(2): 130-143.

Author(s) from Durham


This article focuses on Sarajevo’s memoryscape to investigate the ambiguous nature of artefacts of commemoration. Suggesting that memorials impact the ways in which people relate to the past and future, the article suggests that they represent important platforms on which different versions of peace and social justice are implicitly narrated and discussed. Depending on the artist/designer, the location, the shape, the audience and the surrounding socio-political discourses, memorials inspire and transform stories of war and peace. The controversies around the Sarajevo roses or monuments dedicated to the international community in Sarajevo mirror controversial societal debates around the nature and politics of peace(building). Conflict and contestation can thus be read through closer investigation of the maps of meaning underpinning the commemoration of certain events. Due to their ambiguous nature, monuments can be used as a platform for the constant transformation of discourses of peace into conflict, and vice versa.