Our colleagues at Nottingham University are holding an AHRC end of project symposium: ‘Conflicts of Memory: Mediating and Commemorating the London Bombings’ on the 4th and 5th of December (see project overview below). A few places are still available on both days. Refreshments and light lunch will be provided, so please let them know if you plan to attend for catering purposes (email@example.com). Please see the programme here, including a paper by the NPCU's Ben O'Loughlin.
People routinely remember and use the past by interwining personal narratives with public events. People remember where they were when dramatic events occurred. These may be highly mediated memories, in film, on television, and in print, but they are still part of our very real personal and collective memories. Personal biography intersects with history in just this implicit way, locating the unfolding details of everyday life in terms of the events of the larger society - history in the making. This project traces the linkages between the media and our everyday remembering of past events through comparing the instant and archival capacities of television with people’s own retellings of events.
Very recently, there has been a massive increase in the availability and use of mobile phones equipped with cameras and videos in the UK which has led to images and film captured by bystanders being used to help create and shape breaking news stories. Our research investigates the impact of these personal media and individual accounts on television news coverage of traumatic events (the July 2005 London bombings) and also on how these events are later commemorated on television, and how they ultimately come to be remembered by the public.
NB: The event will include an audiocast by Prof. John Tulloch, who himself became central to the mediation of the event when his face (pictured left) became an icon and adopted for political causes he was directly opposed to. Having discussed this with him this week, I can guarantee it will be make for provocative listening. We will post a link to this as soon as it is available.
For now, here's an extract from his book.