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Enduring war: Heroes’ Acre, ‘the empty throne’, and the politics of disappearance
Försvarshögskolan, Militärvetenskapliga institutionen (MVI), Krigsvetenskapliga avdelningen (KVA), Sektionen för luftoperationer (KV Luft).
2016 (engelsk)Inngår i: Critical Military Studies, ISSN 2333-7486, E-ISSN 2333-7494, Vol. 2, nr 3, s. 155-172Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert) Published
Abstract [en]

War memorials are a common and often controversial part of the commemoration of past wars. In order to better grasp their importance for the way war endures below the surface of peace, this article stages an ethnographic encounter with a Namibian monument: Heroes’ Acre. The memorial embodies the official Namibian narrative on past wars by emphasizing a nationalist and quasi-religious symbolism, a framing that has been challenged by a number of writers pointing to the need for going beyond the state discourse. This article complements and complicates the way Heroes’ Acre appears in discourse by focusing on the interstices and absences at the site. By drawing upon my own visit to the monument as well as theoretical engagements, most notably Georgio Agamben’s discussion of ‘the empty throne’, I read Heroes’ Acre as a place where political power functions through emptiness, as it allows the future of war to endure in the present. Engaging particularly with the empty graveyard at the site, I argue that its emptiness needs to be understood as a guarantee for war – not in case it occurs – but as a ready-made symbol of glory, always virtually there, waiting to be fulfilled.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
Taylor & Francis Group, 2016. Vol. 2, nr 3, s. 155-172
Emneord [en]
Critical War Studies, Namibia, Disappearance
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
Krigsvetenskap
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-5997DOI: 10.1080/23337486.2016.1149299OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-5997DiVA, id: diva2:906544
Tilgjengelig fra: 2016-02-24 Laget: 2016-02-24 Sist oppdatert: 2017-07-06bibliografisk kontrollert

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