The Centre for Memory and Identity Studies is an academic and civic NGO meant to create a link between researchers and larger audience. It aims at doing and disseminating researches in the field of memory and identity studies, to promote civic values, to develop cooperation between academia and the actors of the public space through conferences, meetings, happenings, etc.
How to survive communism and political repression
(Life strategies of former political detainees)
In Romania, remembering communist regime remains a controversial issue. A male oriented narrative on communist repression and anticommunist resistance dominates the public discourses. A feminine perspective on communism and political persecutions has enjoyed only limited public visibility. Women have been depicted as victims of the regime and their anti-communist endeavors have been integrated in the broader topic of the anticommunist resistance.
The absence of a public feminine narrative on communism and repression raised questions about women’s roles and gender relations during communism and after the collapse of the regime, but also about the women’s construction of subjectivities in respect with the communist regime ideology and postcommunist national discourses on communism and repression.
This project will focus on womens’ life stories in order to emphasize the women responses to communist propaganda, political repression and communist equality abuses. Our targeted group is composed by 30 women, former political detainees, who had experienced the entire spectrum of communist deeds and ideology: repression, communist equality, everyday life, working life, etc.
We argue that womens’ (former political detainees) narratives on communism and repression fit the public discourse on communism, while constructing personal self-esteem identities based on moral and civic virtues such freedom of speach, of travelling, of learning, of political and religious choices, patriotism seen as an everyday choice, etc.