Beyond Collective Memory analyzes how two African places became icons of collective memory for certain publics, yet remain marginal to national and continental memory discourses. Thiaroye, a Senegalese location of colonial-era massacre, and District Six, a South African neighborhood destroyed under apartheid, have epitomized a shared "memory" of racist violence and resistant community. Analyzing diverse cultural texts surrounding both places, this book argues that the metaphor of collective memory has obscured the structural character of colonial and apartheid violence, and made it difficult to explore the complicit positions that structures of violence produce. In investigating the elisions of memory discourses, Beyond Collective Memory challenges the dominance of collective memory, and calls attention to the African pasts, metaphors, and imaginaries that exist beyond it.
Table of Contents
Part I: Sites of Memory
1. Making Island Stones Speak
2. Recalling Community
Part II: Places of Complicity
3. Skew Intimacies
4. Complicit Expressions
Part III: Imaginaries of Future Freedom
5. Holiday Time in the Twentieth Century
6. Archives of Future Freedom
Cullen Goldblatt is a scholar, writer, and translator. He holds a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of California, Berkeley. His essays have been published in forums such as Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies, Research in African Literatures, and in the volume Crossings and Comparisons (LuKa – Literaturen und Kunst Afrikas).