Forskning ved Københavns Universitet - Københavns Universitet


How cultural traumas occur on social media: The case of the Ukrainian famine 1932-1933

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningfagfællebedømt

This article concerns how a century-old cultural trauma occurs on social media today. The article first maps a history of a cultural trauma and its memorialisation and then proceeds with its construction on social media. Theoretically, the article combines the literature on cultural trauma and digital media with the scholarship on “dark” tourism and social media. The article argues that while the current literature on cultural trauma focuses on how digital media becomes an alternative space for articulation of contesting narratives against the mainstream media and the state, we need to look at the role of social media in encouraging solidarity in cultural trauma making between different institutional and non-institutional actors. Moreover, without undermining participatory potential of digital media, the article suggests that we should also look at how social media affordances, such as commercial practices and algorithms, can influence the content of cultural trauma narratives online. The essay therefore reconceptualises the role of intellectuals and experts in articulation of cultural trauma by suggesting that everyone becomes a carrier of a cultural trauma narrative in a digital age. Empirically, the article focuses on the Ukrainian famine 1932-1933 and mediation of its national memorial site from Kyiv on Instagram. It studies how social media users discuss the nature of a historical tragedy, its victims and perpetrators through uploaded images from an offline memorial site to an online platform. The article concludes with a suggestion to pay more attention to mediation of historical events on social media.
TidsskriftInternational Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society
StatusUdgivet - 2020

ID: 232825708