Cultural Memory

Cultural Memory

The Cultural Memory strand is about memory as placing, cultural connection and creation. It is led by Professor Juliet Simpson FRSA, FRHistS.

Research within the Cultural Memory strand explores the significance of sites, objects, artworks, images and texts in shaping identities of memory and belonging. Asking new and in-depth questions about why the past matters now and for future memory-making, it encompasses art works, places, cultures and communities – how and in what ways their histories and unseen stories of art, cultures and people pivotally shape ideas of belonging, ownership and identities of the present.

Comprising art historians, historians, specialists in literature and languages, visual and material cultures, visual artists and curators, key research interests include:

  • Afterlives of medieval and Renaissance objects
  • Images and cultural memory in transforming modern and contemporary art and cultures
  • Press histories and memory – exploring regional voice, place and site in connecting histories and local community
  • Corpora and culture – new knowledge of how linguistic patterns and diversity communicate and shape collective language acts and memory
  • Ancient Greek Comedy as prefiguring and opening new light on modern and contemporary ideas of performance and the ‘performative’
  • Material cultures of commemoration
  • Revealing unheard migrant voices, through unseen memoirs and travelling texts, and new engagements with embodied memory and loss probing how art navigates trauma and reimagines being and connection

For research enquiries, please email

Image credit: Unknown artist. Monument for Sir Lawrence Tanfield (detail of Elizabeth Cary). St. John the Baptist, Burford (after 1625). Photo: Patricia Phillippy.

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