This book contributes to the study of collective memory and the sociology of terrorism by analysing the role of memorialisation in relation to terrorism, its victims, and the broader society. While various social scientists have extensively theorized and analysed how trauma and memory interact, grow apart, and reinforce each other, this book puts the rights and needs of the victims centre-stage.
Departing from the prescriptive, legal blueprints of memory, this book introduces the concept of ‘memorial needs’ to challenge and complement existing victimological frameworks. It critically assesses the efficacy of public memorialisation and its success in assisting those affected by violence by exploring how victims engage with memory and memorialisation. It investigates personal and collective responses to urban terrorism in Europe that have taken a wide range of forms including media coverage, spontaneous memorials and public mobilisations, literary and artistic works, trials, and controversial counter-terrorism measures.
Making a case against the fetishization of memory as an overarching answer to curing visible and invisible wounds provoked by violence, the book sends out a practical invitation to the field to 'repair symbolic reparations' in a way that memorialisation is not just an expression of potential, an aspiration for a more moral and just society and a promise of healing for the victimised.
An accessible and compelling read, this book will appeal to students and scholars of victimology, criminology, sociology, politics and those interested in the relationship between collective memory and terrorism.