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“This outstanding collection of essays pushes the boundaries of our understanding of how memory is a powerful force in political transformations around the world. Informed by theoretical writings, but not weighed down by them, the authors tell compelling stories of struggles over memory in a wide range of places. This volume should be read and pondered not only by those thinking and writing about how societies remember but also by those planners and architects and politicians who are rushing to memorialize our own traumatic events.”—Max Page, author of The Creative Destruction of Manhattan, 1900–1940 — N/A
“When issues of history and memory are publicly controversial, the controversy almost always takes a highly particular contextual form. Striking in its combination of intellectual depth and refreshingly concrete detail, this volume’s unique contribution is to invite reflection on how quite different situations speak to each other, suggesting more general insights that transcend particular contexts.”—Michael Frisch, author of Portraits in Steel — N/A
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This collection expands the scope of what is considered public history by pointing to silences and absences that are as telling as museums and memorials. Contributors remind us that for every monument that is erected, others—including one celebrating Sri Lanka’s independence and another honoring the Unknown Russian Soldier of World War II—remain on the drawing board. While some sites seem woefully underserved by a lack of public memorials—as do post–Pinochet Chile and post–civil war El Salvador—others run the risk of diluting meaning through overexposure, as may be happening with Israel’s Masada. Essayists examine public history as it is conveyed not only in marble and stone but also through cityscapes and performances such as popular songs and parades.
Lisa Maya Knauer
T. M. Scruggs
Irina Carlota Silber
Daniel J. Walkowitz
Daniel J. Walkowitz is Director of College Honors and Professor of History and Metropolitan Studies at New York University.
Lisa Maya Knauer is Assistant Professor of Anthropology and African/African-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth.
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