Two professors argued that memorials and monuments signify “white heterosexual male supremacy” and perpetuate “inherently conservative” historical narratives, according to a Wednesday report.
Texas A&M University women’s studies professors Tasha Dubriwny and Kristan Poirot elaborated on this premise in “Gender and Public Memory,” a July article in Southern Communication Journal, Campus Reform reported.
“Public memory scholars consistently argue that U.S. commemorative practices and traditions promote historical narratives that are inherently conservative in nature,” the professors said, referencing monuments and memorials. “Wittingly or not, these ‘places of public memory’ are likely to mask foundational commitments to white heterosexual male supremacy, class hierarchies, and the systemic violence used to secure them.”
Dubriwny and Poirot acknowledged that their perspective derives from preservation practices in black freedom and feminist schools of thought. The authors also reasoned that women are not memorialized as frequently because monuments typically recognize significant figures in politics, war, science and other public professions, not the private, domesticated roles which women traditionally occupy.
“Memorials … would go a long way toward reconfiguring conversations about race in the present,” Dubriwny told Campus Reform. “Public memories matter because they fuel our contemporary understandings of race and gender.”
The professor did not encourage removing the monuments, but instead urged others to “remember more inclusively.”
The Daily Caller News Foundation reached out to Dubriwny and Poirot for comment, but received none in time for publication.
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