General Questions

  • How and by whom is the cultural memory of Jan Hus and the Council of Constance locally performed in ritual and discursively represented in media
  • How is the story of Constance and Hus ritualized, performed and represented in museums in Constance and Tabor?
  • What are the fundamental questions and tensions informing the commemoration of Hus, and how might these be extended and applied in other similar festival situations?
  • How can visual documentation and participant interviews of ritual, performance and museum exhibits and visits illuminate the central questions informing the study of heritage and commemorative festivals?
  • How do public events with a historically religious context, events largely sponsored by secular institutions, integrate and deal with the interests and memories of religious groups and individuals?
  • Under what circumstances do public rituals work well as vehicles of intercultural understanding and partnership, or, on the contrary, as vehicles of discord and difference?
  • What is the place of religiously significant festivals in the range of contemporary forms of religion and its intersection with public life?
  • What methods and theories are best suited for studying contemporary religiously significant festivals?

Focused Sub Areas and Papers

Authenticity in Commemorative Practices. Dominik Zelinsky. A paper on the use of authenticity in specific objects used in the ecumenical mass, Konstanz’s main church, the Münster Unserer Lieben Frau, July 6, 2015.

Narrative Genres in Cultural Memory Practices. Werner Binder. A paper applying Northrop Frye’s theory of narrative genres to the discourse and narrativizing of the Hus story.

Conceptualizing Cultural Memory through Hegel. Werner Binder. A paper of Hegelian Reflections on Hus Commemorative Practices in Konstanz, July, 2015.

Humor in Cultural Memory Practices. Peter Kuala. A paper exploring a “joking field” attached to the iconic figure of Jan Hus in commemorative events and media.

Theorizing Cultural Trauma. Barry Stephenson. A paper probing, testing, and developing Jeffrey Alexander’s theory of cultural trauma, in relation to cultural memory practices in Konstanz.

The deployment of historical narratives of Jus among visitors to Konstanz. Jenna Vanoic. An ethnographically-focused paper exploring Hus as a multilayered meaning-container, filled by a broad set of audiences and interpreters on the ground in Konstanz.

Material Objects and Cultural Memories. Nils Meise. Paper on how material objects are connected to the remembrance of Jan Hus, and how people make sense of these objects in respect to space and place.