Frames of Remembrance The Dynamics of Collective Memory
What is the symbolic impact of the Vietnam War Memorial? How does television change our engagement with the past? Can the efforts to wipe out Communist legacies succeed? Should victims of the Holocaust be celebrated as heroes or as martyrs? These questions have a great deal in common, yet they are typically asked separately by people working in distinct research areas in different disciplines. Frames of Remembrance shares ideas and concerns across such divides.Irwin-Zarecka writes in clear, trenchant prose, inviting interdisciplinary exchanges. She journeys through a widely ranging empirical terrain, allowing students of collective memory to explore the emergent links and bridges. Working through a selection of analytically challenging questions, she opens new passages of inquiry. The results should prove a treasure trove for experienced researchers and newcomers alike.The first part of the book sets the analytical parameters of the study. The second section reflects on how the past becomes relevant to people in smaller as well as larger communities. The final chapters focus on the practices and practitioners of memory work itself. Included is a select, critically annotated bibliography that, with the range of works listed, shows that the study of collective memory is rapidly gaining a place in the history of past and present.By placing questions about the dynamics of collective remembrance--and forgetting--at the center of our efforts to understand human affairs, this book is a bold undertaking indeed. Yet at a time when the future of whole regions, from Eastern Europe to South Africa, from the Middle East to North America, may well depend on how people deal with the past, this call to serious analytical attention needs to be heard. This book will be of keen interest to historians, sociologists, anthropologists, psychologists, and professionals in communications studies.