Remembrance and Commemorative Work Multi-Directional Memory in a Practical Test

Over three days, “Latitude” presented artistic contributions and debates.
Illustration: © EL BOUM
  • 01. September 2021 — 31. December 2022

  • München (Germany); Berlin (Germany); Hamburg (Germany)

Together with institutions and initiatives, the project enters the possibility spaces of current remembrance and commemorative work and “tests” to what extent multidirectional memory is a helpful concept. In each of initially three events, two people from (district) museums, places of remembrance or memorial sites will talk about their work and the diverse positions of remembrance and commemoration that they negotiate.

The German translation of Multidirectional Memory. Remembering the Holocaust in the Age of Decolonization by Michael Rothberg, Professor of Holocaust Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of California, was published in February 2021. Rothberg explores the pressing question about the simultaneous existence of memories of painful periods in the history of a nation.
Is national memory a zero-sum game, and is therefore memory competition inevitable, or does multidirectional memory make a different, productive perspective possible?
How useful are Rothberg’s reflections on memory that is conceived and practised in a multidirectional and multi-layered manner for the institutional commemorative work in a German context?

Negotiating memory multidirectionally
30 September 2021, 6 pm–7:30 pm, digital, with interpretation in German sign language 
What can commemoration and remembrance work that understands itself from multiple perspectives and is oriented towards diversity look like? What is thereby the relationship between institutional structures and communities? Which positions and perspectives become efficacious and what significance does multidirectional memory have in this context? Natalie Bayer (FHXB Friedrichshain‑Kreuzberg Museum) and Susann Lewerenz (Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial) talked about remembrance and commemorative work by way of these and other questions. The discussion was moderated by Regina Sarreiter (Goethe‑Institut).
The event took place in cooperation with the FHXB Friedrichshain‑Kreuzberg Museum and the series “Entanglements: Racism and Anti-Semitism in Past and Present” of the Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial in collaboration with the Hamburg State Centre for Civic Education.

Memory – Acknowledgement or Unease?
21 October 2021, 7:00 pm, at the NS Documentation Centre in Munich and digital via live stream 

The history of the murder of people with disabilities and of forced sterilisation by the Nazis found little place in public memory until recently. Thousands of families were and are affected by these terrible crimes, and some of their relatives still do not know what really happened. How do institutions deal with this responsibility, and how can memory be preserved and commemoration shaped, including with regard to the death of contemporary witnesses?

A panel consisting of Prof. Dr. Peter Brieger (Medical Director of the kbo‑Isar‑Amper Clinic Munich), Dr. Mirjam Zadoff (Director of the NS Documentation Centre Munich) and Margret Hamm (former Managing Director of the Association of “Euthanasia” and Forced Sterilisation Victims) discuss these questions. The event will be presented by Shoshana Liessmann (Goethe‑Institut).

The event will be conducted in German and is organised in cooperation with the NS Documentation Centre in Munich. 

Project partners

FHXB Museum Berlin
Neuengamme Concentration Camp Memorial
NS Documentation Centre Munich
​German-Russian Museum Berlin Karlshorst