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Picture of Remembering Home in a Time of Mobility

Remembering Home in a Time of Mobility

Memory, Nostalgia and Melancholy

Editor(s): Maja Mikula

Book Description

Memory, nostalgia and melancholy have attracted considerable scholarly attention in recent decades. Numerous critics of globalisation, transnationalism and cosmopolitanism have posited an overwhelming feeling of homelessness not only among people who have been displaced from their original home/lands, but also among those who feel estranged from their places of origin due to rapid social change or environmental decline. Arguably, homesickness is prevalent in today’s developed world, and can be – and sometimes indeed is – felt even for times and places unrelated to someone’s personal roots.

Memory has been mobilised to justify recent conflicts, to question mainstream interpretations of past events, or to demand compensation for the suffering of earlier generations. Nostalgia has been employed as a “utopia in reverse”, revealing more about our unattainable “ideal present”, than about the elusive “lost” past it invokes. A corollary of nostalgia in the late modern politics of loss, melancholy has been a way of dis-identifying from both the horrors of recent history, and the growing insecurities of the present.

The volume raises complex questions related to the ways people have coped with displacement and time-space compression, arguably the two most manifest symptoms of late modernity. How do we grapple with the traumatic experience of the loss of home? What strategies do we use, and what is their underlying politics? How do they intersect with identity positions, such as gender, class and sexuality? How might they contribute to the preservation of national cultures? How has our understanding of home changed in a time of mobility and flow?

Spanning multiple Eurasian and Northern American cultural contexts, the book is of interest to an international academic readership within the fields of cultural studies, memory studies, gender studies, literature, art, performance, film and media studies.


ISBN-13: 978-1-4438-8644-4
ISBN-10: 1-4438-8644-0
Date of Publication: 01/07/2017
Pages / Size: 260 / A5
Price: £61.99


Maja Mikula has worked as a senior lecturer in international studies and cultural studies at the University of Technology Sydney, and as a senior lecturer in global studies at Nottingham Trent University. Her research and publications focus on issues of national identity, cultural memory, gender, borders, transnationalism, digital technologies, heritage and popular culture, with a focus on Europe’s Eastern peripheries. From 2013 to 2015, she was a beneficiary of a Marie Curie Incoming International Fellowship. Her most recent publications include “Historical Re-enactment: Narrativity, Affect and the Sublime” in Rethinking History (2015); “Vernacular Museum: Communal Bonding and Ritual Memory Transfer among Displaced Communities” in International Journal of Heritage Studies (2015); “The Island Monastery of Valaam in Finnish Homeland Tourism: Constructing a ‘Thirdspace’ in the Russian Borderlands” in Fennia-International Journal of Geography (2013); and a compendium of Key Concepts in Cultural Studies (2008).