This online workshop will reflect on the relationship between war and memory in the context of contemporary armed conflicts over disputed territories in Europe and Asia.

Experts will discuss how the experience of studying, observing and participating in these conflicts influences the ways in which we understand war memories and war commemorations. Their presentations will be followed by discussions with members of the DisTerrMem project and the public.

The panel of experts includes:

Dr Arsen Hakobyan, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, National Academy of Sciences of Armenia and Associate Professor at Yerevan State University, Armenia: The Second Nagorno-Karabakh War: Space, Transnationalism and Memory.

Dr Mudassir Farooqi, Assistant Professor of International Relations and War Studies at Forman Christian College, Lahore, Pakistan: Politics of Memory and Jihadi Wars in Kashmir and Afghanistan.

Dr Ivan Gololobov, Teaching Fellow in the Department of Politics, Languages and International Studies at the University of Bath, UK, with research interests in political theory: The Uses of the Past in the Russian Conservative Utopia.

Ilya Kononov, Doctor of Sociology, Professor, Chairman of the Public Organization Center for the Study of Social Processes and Humanities, Head of the Department of Philosophy and Sociology, Luhansk National University, Ukraine: The Politics of Memory of the Warring Parties During the Russian-Ukrainian War of 2022: Similarity in Mutual Exclusion.

The event will be co-chaired by DisTerrMem member Dr Tomasz Rawski, University of Warsaw, Poland and Dr Małgorzata Łukianow, University of Warsaw.

The panel will reflect on the relationship between war and memory in the context of contemporary armed conflicts over disputed territories in Europe and Asia, which, contrary to the predictions of optimists, have not disappeared. On the contrary, in recent years new waves of economic, political and migration crises, we are witnessing the re-intensification of violent conflicts. In Eastern Europe, national antagonisms which were once frozen but never fully resolved, have been escalating again, for instance in the Nagorno-Karabakh region, while new conflicts have erupted unexpectedly, for example in Ukraine. At the same time, since the 2010s, Asia and the Middle East have experienced both large violent conflicts (e.g. the Syrian war) and armed clashes on a smaller scale (e.g. the 2020 India-Pakistan border skirmishes).

This discussion panel explores how the experience of studying, observing and, perhaps, even participating in contemporary violent conflicts influences our understanding of the memories of border conflicts. Since the 1980s, the phenomena of war memories and war commemorations have received broad attention throughout the world. We seek to address a set of theoretical and empirical questions. How are current conflicts changing the ways in which national pasts are understood in particular countries? How do memory politics shape conflicts on the ground? How do different commemorative strategies operate under conditions of sustained, strong political polarisation? How do they modify local and national memoryscapes? To what extent are concepts such as memory conflict, memory struggle or mnemonic wars relevant to the contexts of ongoing violent conflicts? Last but not least, how to effectively break down antagonistic, mutually hostile modes of remembrance towards developing more inclusive, perhaps agonistic, models of understanding the past?

Who is this event for?

This event is one of a series of three 2-hour workshops taking place on 7-8-9 December 2022. These free events are aimed at policy makers, heritage professionals, NGOs, grassroots organisations, and academic and community researchers with an interest in the management of memories in border conflicts. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in discussions with the expert panel and with researchers from across the DisTerrMem project’s seven partner organisations.

Find out more and reserve your place

Please register for this free event via eventbrite at

Please note: this event will be hosted from Poland, hence event times quoted on eventbrite show Central European Time (CET), 09.30am-11.30am.

Zoom link to join event: / Meeting ID: 935 7509 3732 / Passcode: 744221

About the DisTerrMem project

Disputed Territories and Memory (DisTerrMem) is a five-year project funded by Horizon 2020, the European Union’s biggest research and innovation programme.

DisTerrMem brings together an international team of researchers from seven organisations who are working collaboratively to explore the management of competing memories of disputed territories across borders in non-conflictual ways in the context of peace-building. Read more about the project and its work.

Speaker biographies

Arsen Hakobyan received his PhD in Social & Cultural Anthropology from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, National Academy of Sciences of Armenia. He is Senior Research Fellow at the Institute, and also Associate Professor at Yerevan State University. He has received several scholarships and fellowships (DAAD, ASCN) and has conducted research at the Universities of Cambridge, Fribourg, Marburg, Tubingen and Angers. His research interests include the anthropology of violence, refugee studies, memory and diaspora studies, ethnicity, the Caucasus and the Middle East. He is co-author of Beyond The Karabakh Conflict: The Story Village Exchange (with S. Huseynova & S. Rumyantsev).

Mudassir Farooqi is a tenured academic of war and security studies. He is currently working as an Assistant Professor of IR and War Studies at Forman Christian College, Lahore, Pakistan,, Mudassir was awarded PhD in 2020 from the University of Leicester, England. His research and teaching focus on unconventional warfare, Jihadism and War on Terrorism, politics of memory, borders and wars in modern world. Mudassir has published in renowned journals and presented in well reputed conferences. He is now working on the reasons for the failure of the US-led western military alliance in GWoT, hybrid and forever wars in western military thinking and strategy. 

Ivan Golobov joined the University of Bath in 2016 as a Teaching Fellow in Politics and Russian Studies. Prior to this he was doing research at the University of Warwick. He was awarded his PhD from the Ideology and Discourse Analysis Programme, Department of Government, University of Essex.

Ilya Fedorovich Kononov is a Doctor of Sociology, Visiting Professor at Carleton University (Ottawa, Canada), Professor of the Department of Philosophy and Sociology at Taras Shevchenko Luhansk National University (Poltava, Ukraine).

Other events in this series

The Role of Museums in Managing Memories of Disputed Territories, Thursday 8 December

Cultural and Civil Society Initiatives in Managing Memories of Disputed Territories, Friday 9 December

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