le 17 mai 2022
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Publié le 12 mai 2022 Mis à jour le 13 mai 2022

Présentation : Dr. Elizabeth Kryder-Reid - Spatial and Temporal Dimensions of Toxic Heritage: Industry, War, and the Politics of Memory

Elizabeth Kryder-Reid, Indiana University, Indianapolis (IUPUI) Presentation for PLACES Lab, May 17, 2022, 15h45 - 16h30 Salle 130 bâtiment des Chênes 2


Spatial and Temporal Dimensions of Toxic Heritage: Industry, War, and the Politics of Memory

Presentation for PLACES Lab, May 17, 2022,
15h45 - 16h30 
Salle 130 bâtiment des Chênes 2

This presentation focuses on the toxic heritage of industry and war manifested in the intersections of environmental harm and memory practices. Against the backdrop of case studies in industrial toxic heritage in the USA and UK, the presentation focuses on the toxic heritage of La Grande Guerre. World War 1 has a well-known history of formal and informal memory practices in museums and memorials, as well as the ongoing interpretation of historic sites associated with the war. Less well-known are the war’s environmental burdens created primarily by both the use of artillery during the war and the post-war destruction of conventional and chemical weapons across southern Belgium and northern France in the area designated as La Zone Rouge. These “dechets de guerre” continue to affect people’s health through unexploded ordinance, the harmful effects of heavy metals such as arsenic, antimony, mercury, and lead, and widespread perchlorates and other chemicals contaminating soil and water (Hubé 2016). I explore the intersections of the war’s environmental harms and memory practices within the theoretical context of slow violence (Nixon 2011), focusing on the temporal and spatial dimensions of WWI’s toxic heritage.

Dr. Elizabeth Kryder-Reid

Dr. Elizabeth Kryder-Reid is Chancellor’s Professor of Anthropology and Museum Studies at Indiana University, Indianapolis, where she is the Director of the Cultural Heritage Research Center and former Director of the IUPUI Museum Studies Program. With anthropology degrees from Harvard and Brown, and professional experience in archaeology, art museums, and historic sites, her transdisciplinary research investigates how the tangible and intangible remnants of the past figure in the contestation of social inequalities across gender, race, class, ethnicity, and religion. Her past research on the intersections of landscape and power, including Keywords in American Landscape and California Mission Landscapes: Race, Memory, and the Politics of Heritage. Her current research is on toxic heritage investigating how places of environmental harm are treated as heritage and examining the ways heritage sites are addressing aspects of their environmental harm, particularly as it intersects with environmental justice issues. As a Fulbright Research Scholar (2022), Dr. Kryder-Reid’s research in France explores the landscapes of ruination associated with military conflict, particularly the ecological and social consequences of munitions in the WWI battlefields in the areas designated as the “Zone Rouge.” While at CY Cergy, she is working with Dr. Anne Hertzog, and also participating in the Ruines de Guerre seminars on Martyred Villages.