The mass rapes of 1945 in contemporary memory culture: The (gender) politics of metaphor and metonymy

TitleThe mass rapes of 1945 in contemporary memory culture: The (gender) politics of metaphor and metonymy
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsStone, Katherine
JournalEuropean Journal of Cultural Studies
Volume4
Date Published07/2017
Abstract

This article takes Jenny Erpenbeck’s provocative novel Heimsuchung as an opportunity to consider how the mass rape of German women in 1945 has functioned as a ‘mnemonic signifier’, that is, a symbolic figuration of broader memory discourses. Through a close reading of this work, I show that this mnemonic signifier often dovetails with cultural ‘rape scripts’ that determine whether and how sexual violence is addressed, recognized and understood. Exploring how wartime rape has been remembered thus opens up new perspectives on the social and political salience of memory.

URLhttp://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1367549417718207
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