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Citizens’ Memories and Imaginaries: Democratic Citizenship

Project leader:
Marina Gržinić (IBK)

Project team:
Sophie Uitz, Jovita Pristovšek

1 year
extended until 31.8.2023

Funded by:
FWF – Austrian Science Fund | Top Citizen Science (TCS119)


FWF | Top Citizen Science
led by Marina Gržinić, Institute for Fine Arts
Duration: 1.3.2022 – 31.8.2023

This project investigates the imaginaries of Jewish, queer, and migrant citizen groups in post-Nazi Austria from 1945 until today, specifically imaginaries formed through memories: How are memories and imaginaries from Jewish, queer and migrant communities manifested within majoritarian narratives of Austrian society? How do members of these communities position themselves in relation to broader hegemonic discourses of state and nationhood in Austria today? To what extent are counter-discourses to dominant historic narratives performed in these communities? And how do they challenge the predominant construction of citizenship?

Democratic citizenship constitutes the outcome of a process of political performativity through e. g. remembering, retelling, reimagining and is based on a constant seeking of dialogue and opposition to the differentiations of the majoritarian citizens from those who are not – or should not be – citizens. It is the performance of this process by citizens themselves that this project seeks to facilitate.

The proposed project is a relative novelty, combining citizen science with arts-based research. Imaginaries are a collective and relational form of knowledge that is experiential, pluri-spatial and pluri-temporal. CS and arts-based research are an innovative way of gaining insights onto such imaginaries and their potential for democratic citizenship. The exploration of memories and imaginaries of the three marginalized communities is timely and has the potential to inform the citizen humanities.