Preliminary Programme

Wed 12 April
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Thu 13 April
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Fri 14 April
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Sat 15 April
    08.30 - 10.30
    11.00 - 13.00
    14.00 - 16.00

All days
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Wednesday 12 April 2023 16.30 - 18.30
Y-4 ORA03 Oral History and Family Memory
Västra Hamngatan 25 AK2 138
Network: Oral History Chair: Samira Saramo
Organizers: - Discussants: -
Tiiu Jaago : Mothers and Daughters: either Intergenerational Conflict or Conciliatory Negotiation?
The collection of Estonian life histories includes more than 3,500 manuscript life stories, which provide a cross-section of changes in both society and mental attitudes over the past 30 years.
In the life stories told in the 1990s, it is rare to see a depiction of intergenerational conflict. The narrators of ... (Show more)
The collection of Estonian life histories includes more than 3,500 manuscript life stories, which provide a cross-section of changes in both society and mental attitudes over the past 30 years.
In the life stories told in the 1990s, it is rare to see a depiction of intergenerational conflict. The narrators of these stories were mostly born before World War II in the independent Republic of Estonia. As expected, their attention is focused on the conflict of people and political power caused by the establishment of Soviet power in Estonia. Family relationships were portrayed mostly as harmonious. Conflicts within the family were spoken of as misunderstandings, that occurring from time to time, which did not, however, lead to tragic or traumatic consequences.
However, in the stories told in the 21st century, the issue of alienation between parents and children is becoming more and more important. On the one hand, this is due to the separation of children from their parents, either because of the war or political imprisonment, as well as because of the way of life after the war. Often parents left their young children with their grandparents to somehow organize their own lives. But next to it, it is obvious that the understanding of the family and the organization of internal relations inside of the family has changed radically in the second half of the 20th century.
Based on some examples chosen from the life stories’ collection, the questions will be ask: (1) what manifestations and the factors that cause them come to light when daughters talk about the conflicts between themselves and their mother; (2) why in some cases we can talk about the daughter's accusations, but in other cases we see how the narrator tries to understand the mother; (3) what changes in the relationship between mother and children that took place in Estonian society in the second half of the 20th century can be highlighted based on the observed stories; (4) how the rules of storytelling have changed when the topic of conversation is family relationships. (Show less)

Michael John : Rich, Philanthropic, Rothschild. Aspects of a Family History and its Perception
On January 29, 1938, six weeks before the seizure of power by the National Socialists in Austria, an article about the Nathaniel von Rothschild Foundation (“Am Rosenhügel”) described the institution as a “great foundation with incredible development potential! 20 million that may never be touched, over 800,000 Crowns interest available ... (Show more)
On January 29, 1938, six weeks before the seizure of power by the National Socialists in Austria, an article about the Nathaniel von Rothschild Foundation (“Am Rosenhügel”) described the institution as a “great foundation with incredible development potential! 20 million that may never be touched, over 800,000 Crowns interest available every year.” Indeed, Baron Nathaniel von Rothschild (1836–1905) formulated his testament in 1900 allocating 20 million Austrian Crowns to be used for the construction and operation of psychiatric hospitals for the treatment of patients without means not regarding the confession or national origin of the patients or of the doctors – the highest sum in these days donated by a private person for social purposes. Nathaniel Rothschild was an interesting personality. The Jewish philanthrope donated not only two modern hospitals for people without means he as well possessed a luxurious castle in the countryside which he placed at the disposal of a home for invalid veterans; and he also financed several more charitable activities. Nathaniel von Rothschild was a leading member and donator of the Viennese Camera Club, he is also credited with having co-introduced football into Austria. With his gardens and finance, a club primarily by Rothschild´s gardeners was formed in 1894, the First Vienna Football Club. The teams dress was in the Rothschild colours blue and yellow, which the club still uses today. Nathaniel Rothschild´s life was full of charity and philanthropic activities. Another type of character was his brother Albert von Rothschild (1844 – 1911), who concentrated more on banking, in 1900 he was the richest man in Europe. The Rothschild family was always confronted with attacks because of their wealth accompanied by conspiracy theories. Albert Rothschild and his son Alphonse as well as Louis Nathaniel guaranteed the philanthropic orientation of the Vienna branch of the family till 1938, when the Nazis “Aryanized” Nathaniel Rothschild´s foundation. It never was restituted. The presentation focuses on biographic details of the Viennese Rothschild branch in the 19th and 20th centuries as well as on the perception of this high-income family up to our days when the philanthropic activities and the non-restitution came into discussion in Austria again. The proposed presentation is based on archival material, memoirs and as well on oral history interviews (perception questions; family descendants). It is inspired by the Oral History and Life Stories Network Call of Papers raising questions on combining oral history and life story methods, what are the themes today in that field, up to reflecting on ethical issues. (Show less)

Ulla Savolainen : Mnemonic Affordances of Family Photographs: Exploring Memorability of Soviet Repression of Ingrian Finns on Multiple Scales
Ella Ojala (1929–2019) wrote three memoirs and published a book of family photographs at the turn of the 1990s in Finland. Born in the Soviet Union, in the historical area of Ingria located around the city of Leningrad, Ojala belonged to a group called Ingrian Finns. During her childhood she ... (Show more)
Ella Ojala (1929–2019) wrote three memoirs and published a book of family photographs at the turn of the 1990s in Finland. Born in the Soviet Union, in the historical area of Ingria located around the city of Leningrad, Ojala belonged to a group called Ingrian Finns. During her childhood she experienced Soviet deportation and German occupation of her home village. In 1943, Ojala and her family were relocated to Finland where she lived the rest of her life. In her books, she reflects on her growing up in the midst of these continuous uncertainties, and dispersal of her family through a family photographs that travel with her across national borders, political regimes, and times. In 2020, Ojala’s family photographs were archived at the Finnish Literature Society’s archives as part of an oral history and data collection project focusing on memories and heritage related to Ingrian Finns.

In this presentation, I will contribute to the discussions on memorability through a theoretical notion of mnemonic affordance. As a case study, I will analyze Ojala’s family photographs’ multiple becomings and their affordances in the mediation of the memory of Soviet repression, forced migrations, and the dispersal of family on multiple scales. My analysis consist of three parts. I will explore affordances of photographs in the mediation of 1) the memory of dispersed family, 2) Ojala’s life story, and 3) the memory of Ingrian Finns’ past more generally. My aim is to highlight analytical benefits of the notion of mnemonic affordance in theorizing memorability and its preconditions on the scales of personal, family, and public memory and to develop novel methodological tools for research of oral histories, life stories, and memory in culture. (Show less)

Radmila Svarickova Slabakova : Family Memories, Oral Histories and the Senses
What is the role of the senses in remembering past events? How can sound, smell, taste or touch help us to recollect our family pasts? Which kind of memories do they reveal? The case of the scent and taste of a little crumb of madeleine dredging up a long-lost memory ... (Show more)
What is the role of the senses in remembering past events? How can sound, smell, taste or touch help us to recollect our family pasts? Which kind of memories do they reveal? The case of the scent and taste of a little crumb of madeleine dredging up a long-lost memory in Proust´s case is well known but what sounds, smells, tastes or touches can be remembered when recollecting one´s own childhood? The presentation is based on interviews held with three generations of thirteen families in the Czech Republic. During semi-structured interviews, all three generations - of grand-parents, parents and adult children - were challenged to recollect sounds, smells, tastes and touches of their infancy and youth. Were there generational differences in recollecting the senses? How are these recollections connected to family functioning and family relations? Similar questions will be explored and answered profiting from the findings of family psychology and cognitive neuroscience of remembering. The results point to a social construction of sensory memories, to generational differences in case of the scents and sounds of outdoor experiences and to a different character of the memories of sound and smell. Sensory memories should not be omitted when doing oral histories. (Show less)



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