Border Utopias and Trauma Narratives

Saija Kaskinen’s research Border Utopias focuses on trauma narratives in US, Russian, Norwegian, and Finnish contexts. Kaskinen’s research has been divided into three phases. The first phase focuses on the treatment of trauma, the role of memory in trauma, and the nature or characteristics of trauma. These divisions are examined in relation to the state violence and so called “symbolic violence”, which first may appear as an insidious trauma but can be, through different mechanisms, externalized and, thus, can be identified. The phase two combines trauma studies with border and mobility studies and the questions of discourse analysis. The purpose is to locate or place trauma within the theoretical framework of Betrayal Trauma Theory. The purpose is to show how individual cases of traumas are linked to various political state borders of sovereign nations who have created so called Border Utopias. These “Boarder Utopias” are divided into two categories. Historical and Contemporary Border Utopias.  In the last phase of the research, the discussion focuses on the question of how the historical border utopias are recreated in contemporary Finland and Norway. Dr. Kaskinen works in the project 1.9.2016-30.8.2018.

Download the research poster.