Workshop Decolonising the Eastern European Past and Memory Through the Lens of Audio-Visual Archives

Friday, 17 November

14:00 – Visit to the Film Archive of the National Archives of Estonia

16:00 – Coffeebreak

16:30-17:45 – Keynote adress (open to public, M-213)

Constellating the Past and Present: Towards a Theory of Audiovisual Counterhegemonic History Writing” Professor Alison Landsberg (Department of History and Art History, George Mason University)

18:30 – Dinner

Saturday, 18 November

09.30-11.15 – Panel 1: Legibility of the Archives: (Trans)national Tensions and Local Histories

“Soviet Film History without Russia: Reconsidering the Archives of Soviet Cinema” (Raisa Sidenova, Media, Culture and Heritage, Newcastle University)

“Unpacking my Archival Findings: Thoughts on the Chaos of Memory and Archival Resistance to Historical Legibility” (Ana Grgić, Department of Cinema and Media, Babeș-Bolyai University)

“Distant Journey through the Desktop: The Ethics of Approaching Holocaust Footage in the Online Space” (Jiří Anger, Queen Mary University of London / National Film Archive in Prague)

11:15-11:45 – Coffee Break

11:45-13:00 – Keynote address (open to public, M-213)

“The Role of Film Archives in Creating the Canons of Eastern European Cinema” Professor Ewa Mazierska (School of Arts and Media, University of Central Lancashire)

13:00-14:00 – Lunch

14.00-15:15 – Panel 2 (Re)constructing History and Memory through the Archives

“Translating Memories Through Appropriated Archival Footage from Fiction Films” (Martin Palúch, Institute of Theatre and Film Research of The Art Research Centre, Slovak Academy of Sciences)

“The Shadow of Oru Palace. The clash of narratives at the site of a national monument” (Aap Tepper, Film Archives, The National Archives of Estonia)

15:15-15:45 – Coffee Break

15:45-17:00 – Panel 3 Institutional and Legal Context of Private and Public Archives 

“Revisiting Private Memories in Hungary – The Case of the Private Photo and Film Foundation” (Lucy Szemetová, University of St Andrews)

“The Drama of Legislation: Regulating Access to the National Film Archive in Romania” (Diana Popa, Tallinn University)

17:00-17:30 – General Discussion

18:30 – Optional: Film screening (PÖFF – Black Nights Film Festival)

More than thirty years after the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, the war in Ukraine brought Eastern Europe to global attention. As Roma Sendyka (2022) recently noted, Eastern Europe today confronts the global arena with a new multivocal discourse shaped by the voices of students, doctoral candidates, young scholars and artists that demands a decolonial view of the region. This workshop proposes to take up this call to decolonise the Eastern European past from the joint perspective of visual media (broadly understood) and memory studies. It aims to map a theoretical and practice-based view of the region’s past and memory by focusing on Eastern European audio-visual archives and valorising the recent proliferation of artistic practices of archival appropriation in film and film adjacent media in the region.


Tallinn University, ERC project Translating Memories: The Eastern European Past in the
Global Arena
Film Archive of the National Archives of Estonia

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