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Commemorating and Forgetting: Challenges for the New South Africa

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Commemorating and Forgetting: Challenges for the New South Africa Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

When the past is painful, as riddled with violence and injustice as it is in postapartheid South Africa, remembrance presents a problem at once practical and ethical: how much of the past to preserve and recollect and how much to erase and forget if the new nation is to ever unify and move forward? The new South Africa’s confrontation of this dilemma is Martin J. Murray’s subject in Commemorating and Forgetting. More broadly, this book explores how collective memory works—how framing events, persons, and places worthy of recognition and honor entails a selective appropriation of the past, not a mastery of history.

How is the historical past made to appear in the present? In addressing these questions, Murray reveals how collective memory is stored and disseminated in architecture, statuary, monuments and memorials, literature, and art—“landscapes of remembrance” that selectively recall and even fabricate history in the service of nation-building. He examines such vehicles of memory in postapartheid South Africa and parses the stories they tell—stories by turn sanitized, distorted, embellished, and compressed. In this analysis, Commemorating and Forgetting marks a critical move toward recognizing how the legacies and impositions of white minority rule, far from being truly past, remain embedded in, intertwined with, and imprinted on the new nation’s here and now.

Synopsis:

Commemorating and Forgetting addresses the new South Africa’s confrontation with the problem of remembrance: how much of the past to preserve and recollect and how much to erase and move forward? This work marks a critical move toward recognizing how the legacies and impositions of white minority rule remain embedded in and imprinted on the new nation’s here and now.

About the Author

Martin J. Murray is professor of urban planning at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning and adjunct professor in the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies at the University of Michigan.

Table of Contents

Contents

Preface

Introduction: Memory and Amnesia after Apartheid

1. The Power of Collective Memory

2. White Lies: Myth-Making and Social Memory in the Service of White Minority Rule

3. Facing Backward, Looking Forward: The Politics of Remembering and Forgetting

4. Collective Memory in Place: The Voortrekker Monument and the Hector Pieterson Memorial

5. Haunted Heritage: Visual Display at District Six and Robben Island

6. Makeshift Memorials: Marking Time with Vernacular Remembrance

7. Textual Memories: Autobiographical Writing at a Time of Uncertainty

Epilogue: History and Heritage

Acknowledgments

Notes

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780816683000
Author:
Murray, Martin J.
Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
Subject:
General Architecture
Subject:
ARCHITECTURE / General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Paperback
Publication Date:
20130531
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
19
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
8.5 x 5.5 x 1 in

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » General
History and Social Science » Africa » General
History and Social Science » Africa » South Africa
History and Social Science » World History » Africa
History and Social Science » World History » General
Humanities » Philosophy » General

Commemorating and Forgetting: Challenges for the New South Africa New Trade Paper
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Product details 320 pages University of Minnesota Press - English 9780816683000 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,

Commemorating and Forgetting addresses the new South Africa’s confrontation with the problem of remembrance: how much of the past to preserve and recollect and how much to erase and move forward? This work marks a critical move toward recognizing how the legacies and impositions of white minority rule remain embedded in and imprinted on the new nation’s here and now.

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