Politics of affect in the EU heritage policy discourse : an analysis of promotional videos of sites awarded with the European Heritage Label
Lähdesmäki, T. (2017). Politics of affect in the EU heritage policy discourse : an analysis of promotional videos of sites awarded with the European Heritage Label. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 23 (8), 709-722. doi:10.1080/13527258.2017.1317649
Published inInternational Journal of Heritage Studies
© 2017 Tuuli Lähdesmäki. Published with licence by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Published in this repository with the kind permission of the publisher.
European cultural heritage is discussed with affective rhetoric in current European Union (EU) policy discourse. How does affect contribute to the meaning-making of a European cultural heritage and how are the workings of affect used by the EU to promote certain meanings of heritage and effect thereupon? The analysis focuses on recent promotional videos of sites awarded with the European Heritage Label by the EU. In the videos, affective textual, visual, audible, and narrative tropes intertwine with the tropes of EU policy rhetoric, increasing its capacity to impact and ‘move’ the receivers. The ethos of a European cultural heritage in the videos is based on a paradox: the history of the several sites is in various ways intertwined with extreme agony, violence, hatred, oppression, and injustice. However, the stories of the sites in the videos turn their legacy into a positive ethos of conquering these negative extremes and cherishing their positive opposites: freedom, justice, solidarity, and peace. The affectivity of the videos prepares the receivers to adopt their political aim: support for the EU and European integration. The analysis indicates how affect has a key role in producing an impression of the irrefutability and choicelessness of EU politics. ...