A Discontinued Project, a Current and a Prospective Monument in Sweden




postmemory, monument, countermonument, difficult heritage, Sweden


In Sweden, a wave of new monuments can currently be observed, both in terms of what is being monumentalized, and in how it is being executed. This article seeks to understand what is at stake in these processes, which bear similarities to various international examples, by employing the concept of postmonuments. Inspired by Marianne Hirsch’s notion of postmemory, the concept focuses on the temporal and commissioning aspects of the “post,” rather than on the transmission of memory. The three projects discussed were all initiated between 2018 and 2019 and, at the time of writing remain incomplete. The first of these is a discountinued monument commemorating Swedish colonialism, the second is an LGBTQI+ monument soon to be realized, and the third a prospective Antiracist monument.


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Author Biography

Rebecka Katz Thor, Stockholm University, Sweden

Is a researcher and writer. She holds PhD in Aesthetics from Södertörn University, Sweden. Her research interests are processes of commemoration, monuments, contemporary art and its relation to political, historical, and ethical claims. In the spring 2022 she was visiting scholar in Department of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, invited by Marianne Hirsch. She is project leader for Remember us To Life – Vulnerable Memories in a Prospective Monument, Memorial and Museum following three ongoing commemorative projects in Sweden (2021-2024). She is a researcher in the project Distrusting Monuments. Art and The War in Former Yugoslavia (2022-2025). Her dissertation Beyond the Witness – Holocaust Representation and the Testimony of Images investigates the image-as-witness in three films made of archival materials. She is active as a critic, writer, lecturer and teacher in aesthetics and art theory. She has an MA from the New School for Social Research, New York and was a researcher at the Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht.


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How to Cite

Katz Thor, Rebecka. 2023. “Postmonuments? : A Discontinued Project, a Current and a Prospective Monument in Sweden”. Politeja 20 (3(84):5-18.