Memorialisation discourses in northern Uganda; A study on motivations, ambitions and expectations of memorialisation

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In post-conflict societies, memorialisation is increasingly considered to have a role in reconstruction and peacebuilding efforts. However, the impact of memorialisation in such societies is variable and can include negative effects. We nevertheless see that people often have particular expectations about its functioning and contribution. Through a case study of northern Uganda, this study analyses the assumed roles that are ascribed to memorialisation by different actors and how their prevalence can be understood within the broader post-conflict context. The study is based on an analysis of news articles from the most prominent Ugandan news agencies. It shows that a distinction can be made between assumed roles of memorialisation that are based on supposed inherent values of remembering and commemorating, and others that are based on more instrumental values of memorialisation. The different roles also reflect emphases on different aspects of the circumstances and needs in the aftermath of the conflict between the LRA and the Ugandan government. Furthermore, it was found that even when different actors promote similar roles of memorialisation, the actual motivations for promoting them can differ significantly.
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