Document Type


Publication Date



ESMA, an infamous center for torture and extermination, now houses a memorial museum. It first opened in 2007 and was subsequently rethought and remodeled. Museological interventions modified the museum script and the visits’ format. This article explores the (re)construction of memories through the communication process between the site and its visitors. It asks: What are the differences between the previous space and the modified one? How do changes affect interactions between visitors and the space? I review the authorial intentions of curators and public responses to the space to trace the evolving debate over what the museum’s script should include/exclude, changes in official memorialization policies and the perceived impact of the space of memory/museum on visitors.


This article was published as

Kaiser, Susana. "Writing and Reading Memories at a Buenos Aires Memorial Site: The Ex-ESMA." History & Memory, vol. 32 no. 1, 2020, p. 69-99. Project MUSE

No part of it may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, transmitted, or distributed in any form, by any means, electronic, mechanical, photographic, or otherwise, without the prior permission of Indiana University Press. For education reuse, please contact the Copyright Clearance Center <>. For all other permissions, contact IU Press at <>.