Sites of Memory presents memories and personal testimonies about places of importance to modern Jordanian history. Carving up a space for dissonance and incoherency, the exhibition is an invitation to consider the role of the aural in the construction of historical narratives and rethink the representation of “the event” in relation to various sites across the country:
Ali Pasha Abdyeh Street (Mafraq), Al-Muqariya Village (Shobak- Ma'an), Sheikh Rashid Mosque (Al-Ramtha- Irbid), The Duke’s Diwan (Amman), Palace of Al - Alali - Kleib Shreyda Palace (Tubnah- Irbid), Ma'an Stream (Ma'an), Castle Street (Al-Karak), Old Ma’an Market (Ma'an), Al Rawsha Cafe (Al-Zarqa), Diwan Al Majali (Al-Karak), Diwan Methqal (Um Al Amad, Amman).
The exhibition is the final public event of the research project Our Memory which is jointly realized by the Goethe-Institut, the Institut français de Jordanie (IFJ), the Institut français du Proche Orient (Ifpo), the National Library of Jordan as well as the University of Yarmouk, the University of Mutah, the University Hussein Bin Talal and the University of Jordan.
Oral traditions are strong in Jordan, but have so far been rarely used as a source for documenting and analysing the living history of various sites of memory around the country. Responding to the need to document and preserve such narratives, the project Our Memory worked with young researchers to conduct field work and engage with local communities to preserve their stories.
Using the recordings of these stories, the exhibition shows how historical sites have been used in more recent events, how their meaning has shifted, and why local communities might relate to such sites in very different ways. The exhibition therefore creates space for a more inclusive understanding of Jordan’s social history, while also meditating on the relationship between tangible and intangible cultural heritage.
The exhibition runs to 11 November 2019.
The exhibition is realized as part of the Cultural Heritage Days in Jordan.