Guiding Questions for the Workshop

Guiding Questions for the Workshop

  1. Academic subfield: How can we explain the growing/renewing interest in Cold War civil defense? Is it simply an outgrowth of the growth and diversification of Cold War studies? Is civil defense simply a historical curiosity? Or is the interest in civil defense a sign of global unease today?
  2. Transnationalism: What do we reveal by transcending national frames of analysis to examine transnational cooperation and global circulations of knowledge, technologies, concepts, images and affects? What are the limitations of global/transnational histories of civil defense?
  3. Interdisciplinarity: What do we gain by using interdisciplinary approaches and alternative methodological frameworks when we study civil defense? What might we lose?
  4. Periodization: How do we periodize our studies of civil defense and why? Is civil defense a story about the Cold War or the broader Nuclear Age? How do we connect nuclear civil defense to the experiences and memories of World War Two?
  5. Legacies – what legacies? What are the legacies of nuclear civil defense now that the Cold War is over? Judging from recent events (Russia’s civil defense drills, Germany’s call for the stocking of emergency supplies, Swedish government’s decision to restart its civil defense program): did civil defense only hibernate camouflaged within risk-management schemes? How might future civil defense programs and organisations look, and what is our role, as researchers, in this?