Memory Stories
4th July 2014
What is memory work?
• Method of inquiry developed by Frigga
Haug with and for the feminist
• Tool to discover memories we didn’t
know we had and explore assumptions
about ourselves and our behaviour.
What is memory work?
• A research tool that generates data
and/or research questions.
• An individual or collective tool for
exploring questions of identity and how
social norms influence our identities.
• Can be quite an elaborate process over
a period of time.
Theoretical assumptions
Our personalities are constructed
Meaning is constructed
Tendency to eliminate contradictions
Language is not a neutral tool
What are we planning to do?
Select a question/topic
Take 5 minutes to think
Take 15 minutes to write our stories
Mix them up and read out aloud
Select one story to analyse in-depth
Please remember
• We will be analysing
the text, not the writer.
Possible topics
When I was trying to make a difference
A time when I was successful
A time of change
A time when I learned something
Further reading
• Frigga Haug, Memory-work as a method of social
science research – A detailed rendering of memorywork method, accessed online on July 4th, 2014 at
• Karin Widerberg, “For the sake of knowledge:
Exploring memory-work in research and teaching,” in:
A. Hyle, M. Ewing, D. Montgomery + J. Kaufman
(eds.) (2008), Dissecting the Mundane: International
Perspectives on Memory work, University Press of