Public forgetting: The rhetoric and politics of beginning again

Research output: Book/ReportBook

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Forgetting is usually juxtaposed with memory as its opposite in a negative way: it is seen as the loss of the ability to remember, or, ironically, as the inevitable process of distortion or dissolution that accompanies attempts to commemorate the past. The civic emphasis on the crucial importance of preserving lessons from the past to prevent us from repeating mistakes that led to violence and injustice, invoked most poignantly in the call of "Never again" from Holocaust survivors, tends to promote a view of forgetting as verging on sin or irresponsibility. In this book, Bradford Vivian hopes to put a much more positive spin on forgetting by elucidating its constitutive role in the formation and transformation of public memory. Using examples ranging from classical rhetoric to contemporary crises like 9/11, Public Forgetting demonstrates how, contrary to conventional wisdom, communities may adopt idioms of forgetting in order to create new and beneficial standards of public judgment concerning the lessons and responsibilities of their shared past.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherPenn State University Press
Number of pages212
ISBN (Print)9780271036663
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010

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Rhetoric
Forgetting
Injustice
Dissolution
Civics
Holocaust Survivors
Public Memory
Responsibility
Wisdom
Conventional
Idioms
Mistakes
Classical Rhetoric
September 11 Attacks

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities(all)

Cite this

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Public forgetting : The rhetoric and politics of beginning again. / Vivian, Bradford James.

Penn State University Press, 2010. 212 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBook

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