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Published: 27 Apr, 2020

New Volume on Social Movements, Cultural Memory and Digital Media

NEWS Department of Sociology Research Fellow and DIGSUM Member, Sam Merrill is happy to announce the recent publication of a volume dedicated to social movements, cultural memory and digital media. The volume, which Sam edited with Emily Keightley (Loughborough University UK) and Priska Daphi (Bielefeld University, Germany), has been published as part of Palgrave Macmillan’s Memory Studies Series.

Establishing the digital memory work practices of social movements as an important area of research, the volume’s contributions reveal how activists use digital media to lay claim to, circulate and curate cultural memories. Interdisciplinary in scope these contributions address case studies from Germany, the USA, Sweden, Argentina, India, the UK, Russia and Italy while employing methodologies that target digitally and non-digitally entangled mobilizations of mediated remembrance.

They focus on topics including: memory’s role in transgender transmedia activism; the mnemonic appropriations of far-right movements; the human and non-human memory work of activist Facebook pages; the digital spread of historical protest photographs; the recycling of commemorative activist hashtags on Twitter; the diffusion of memories between local and transnational scales of activism; the mediatisation of memory-based performative protests via YouTube; digitally inflected notions of the living archive in contentious settings; and digital media witnessing as a future memory resource.

More details are available here:


“Weaving together diverse disciplinary perspectives, this edited volume offers an insightful exploration of the relationship between activism and digital memory. It brings together scholars from memory studies, digital media research and social movement studies to investigate practices of digital curation, circulation and claiming of memories by social and political movements. The picture that emerges is nuanced and compelling. It is also firmly grounded in empirical case studies from all over the world, from the virtual Escrache in Argentina to American transgender communities to the Navalny campaign in Russia. This is an indispensable volume for scholars interested in digital memory and social movements.” Dr Anastasia Kavada, Reader in Media and Politics, School of Media and Communication, University of Westminster, UK.

“While social movements are certainly innovative, they are also deeply rooted in traditions of contention that are embedded in the memories of past struggles. Mnemonic practices involve complex mechanisms that work offline, but also online. Covering a broad range of cases in various parts of the world and bridging studies on memory and digital media, this very interesting collection helps us understand the forms and meaning of protest.” Donatella della Porta, Professor of Political Science, Scuola Normale Superiore Florence, Italy.

“This excellent collection offers cutting-edge insights within a unified perspective. It will become required reading for everyone interested in memory and activism in the digital age.” Ann Rigney, Professor of Comparative Literature, Utrecht University, The Netherlands.