Dealing with death: the politics of military loss in contemporary Europe

Project leader

Funding source

Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ)

Project Details

Start date: 01/07/2013
End date: 31/12/2013
Funding: 50000 SEK


The application concerns funding for establishing a research team that will carry out the project "Dealing with death: The politics of military loss in contemporary Europe". The project requires participants from several different countries and a workshop is necessary for further exploring and elaborating on the specifics of the research design.

Project description: During the last decade more than 500 European solders have been killed on military missions in Afghanistan. As the demised soldiers are brought "home" the present death is connected to national narratives. It seems that internationally acknowledged universal human rights and institutions are insufficient to carry the symbolical weight of legitimizing the deaths of European soldiers. The aim of this research project is to investigate how deaths of soldiers on international missions are given social meaning as well as how such military loss is politically framed and handled. We will analyze how the deaths of European soldiers have been negotiated politically in six different countries (Sweden, Denmark, UK, Germany, Estonia, Italy). The project is based on empirical studies of the media as well as of government actions and extra-parliamentary political groups. The project furthers theoretical discussion on the relationship between national narratives and the dynamics of the political debate. Another contribution concerns changing gender norms in times of internationalization and changing security discourse.

Last updated on 2017-24-03 at 12:52