Uses of the Past

Thematic line:
Uses of the Past: Memory and Cultural Heritage

Coordinator: Xurxo Ayán Vila


This thematic assembles researchers that have, in different ways, made the uses of the past a central issue of their cultural or scientific activity, namely:

  1. That have fostered the production, recording, and analysis of individual and collective memories;
  2. That work on programmes on tangible and intangible heritage in the framework of museological or similar institutions;
  3. That have sought to increase the historical analysis of historiography itself.

Therefore, this thematic line focuses on methods, theories, and ways of displaying the past. Combining these different areas of activity, it aims to encourage exhibiting practices that are theoretically and methodologically more informed, and which create a dialogue with issues such as the invention of the tradition, the presentification of the past and the role of “forgetting” and trauma. It also intends to encourage historians to deal with issues of growing social significance, such as touristification and commodification of the past.

This thematic line thus functions as a common platform for museologists, curators, archivists, historians, archaeologists, and anthropologists, as wells as for public and private cultural institutions and local communities.


To be announced in January 2019, in the framework of the IHC’s new strategic plan (2018-2022).


Institute of Contemporary History
Av. Berna, 26 C 1069-061 LISBOA
 Tel.: +351 21 7908300 ext. 1545


Monday to Friday
10.00h - 13.00h / 14.00h - 18.00h


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