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Teaching political science through memory work
Unformatted Document Text:  demonstrations, sport-events and graduation days were possible to analyse in relation to constructions of gender and nation. The stories were thereby conceptualised in new ways. This led to a fruitful shift between theory and empirical material and a reduction of the gap between abstract theoretical reasoning and personal everyday life. Finally, we would like to highlight the importance of the way memory work challenges conventional and reductionist concepts in political science. In this discipline the construction of the “political” and the science of the political has traditionally marked out its own limits by claiming universality while excluding “personal” everyday experiences. This construction has also conventionally entailed an exclusion of women and of what is perceived as femininity. By working with memories in this way, the everyday and the seemingly personal, the banal or “non- political”, is moved from the margins to the centre. In itself, this has the potential of bringing new and fruitful understandings of and perspectives on the ways in which social and political orders are created and re-created. 20

Authors: Wendt, Maria. and Åse, Cecilia.
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demonstrations, sport-events and graduation days were possible to analyse in relation to
constructions of gender and nation. The stories were thereby conceptualised in new ways. This
led to a fruitful shift between theory and empirical material and a reduction of the gap between
abstract theoretical reasoning and personal everyday life.
Finally, we would like to highlight the importance of the way memory work challenges
conventional and reductionist concepts in political science. In this discipline the construction of
the “political” and the science of the political has traditionally marked out its own limits by
claiming universality while excluding “personal” everyday experiences. This construction has
also conventionally entailed an exclusion of women and of what is perceived as femininity. By
working with memories in this way, the everyday and the seemingly personal, the banal or “non-
political”, is moved from the margins to the centre. In itself, this has the potential of bringing new
and fruitful understandings of and perspectives on the ways in which social and political orders
are created and re-created.
20


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