Panel discussion

Navigating the Complexity: Interpreting Neglected and Dissonant Heritage

This panel aims to explore the complex discourse surrounding neglected or dissonant cultural heritage in post-socialist societies of Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. These countries have experienced significant political and social transformations in recent decades, resulting in changes in cultural narratives and the preservation of heritage. This has led to the marginalisation or exclusion of certain aspects of cultural heritage that do not align with dominant narratives or ideologies, creating a dissonance in the representation of these societies’ history and identity. Within the context of museum practices and interpretation, this panel will critically examine the roles and responsibilities of cultural institutions in confronting and addressing neglected or dissonant cultural heritage. Museums play a crucial role in shaping collective memory and constructing historical narratives, yet they also have the potential to erase. By exploring how museums in Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina engage with neglected or dissonant cultural heritage, this panel seeks to highlight the challenges and opportunities. How to Navigate the Complexity – how to interpret dissonant or neglected cultural heritage?

Milica Božić Marojević

Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, Serbia

Milica Božić Marojević completed her bachelor, master and PhD studies in Art History and Heritage Management at the Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, where at present she teaches as Associate Professor. In 2019, she was elected as director of the Centre for Museology and Heritology. For more than 20 years, she has been interested in the problems of heritage dissonance and reconciliation through art and culture, memory studies and especially in identity construction through heritage memorialization. In addition to the social role of heritage, its policies, governance, presentation and interpretation, her areas of expertise are also promotion of activism and civic education. Her Ph.D. thesis “Sites of Conscience as Guardians of the Collective Memory” was the first study in the field of heritage dissonance and its role in post war reconciliation processes conducted in the region. Her first book (Ne)željeno nasleđe u prostorima pamćenja. Slobodne zone bolnih uspomena/(Un)Wanted Heritage in Remembrance Spaces. Free Zones of Painful Memories was published in 2015, as the result of pioneering research in war heritage memorialisation in Yugoslav spaces, and is the first publication of its kind in the Serbian language.

Kosjenka Laszlo Klemar

Technical Museum Nikola Tesla in Zagreb, Croatia

Kosjenka Laszlo Klemar, Art historian and Ethnologist/Cultural Anthropologist, PhD in Humanities. She works in the Technical Museum Nikola Tesla in Zagreb (Croatia) as EU and Investment Project Manager and a curator of the Textile technique collection. In her professional work, she focuses on industrial heritage with an emphasis on the industrial heritage of socialism and on gender topics in the context of industry, science and technology. She is the author of numerous museum exhibitions and educational programs and projects, including “Tailored Futures?” (ESF funded project about women workers in textile industry), “Factories and letters” (museum project about cultural amateurism of the socialist industrial workers), “Sanja Iveković: Nada Dimić File 2023/ Nada Dimić – reconstruction of the Cultural Heritage” (exhibition project about Nada Dimić textile factory) etc.

Elma Hodžić

History Museum of BiH

Elma Hodžić is a curator at the History Museum of BiH with a deep passion for art, history, and museology. She has devoted her career to revitalising the History Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Throughout her career, Elma has conducted many activities to engage the museum with society, fostering dialogue about the past, and providing new social contexts for the museum’s collections. With a focus on interpreting heritage from various perspectives, she has curated numerous exhibitions and collaborated with prominent artists to bring new life to the museum’s exhibits. Elma believes in the transformative power of museums and aims to provoke changes in society through the presentation of cultural heritage and museum stories.

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