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Remembering Activism: The Cultural Memory of Protest in Europe

Languages of Protest

(Duration of the project Feb 2021 – Jan 2023)

How has the verbal and discursive framing of activism developed since the late nineteenth century? And how has this affected the retrospective alignment of different movements? My project considers how language has shaped the narrative understanding of protest on the part of participants and observers. I will study how this lexicon of protest has changed over time, and who have been main drivers behind these changes. By looking at historical newspapers as well as activists’ own cultural production, I hope to show how language carries and re-creates memory. My analysis combines both traditional text analysis and distant reading methodologies to study patterns at scale and over longer periods of time.