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Beyond Memory: Silence and the Aesthetics of Remembrance analyses the intricate connections between silence, acts of remembrance and acts of forgetting, and relates the topic of silence to the international research field of Cultural Memory Studies. It engages with the most recent work in the field by viewing silence as a remedy to the traditionally binary approach to our understanding of remembering and forgetting.
The international team of contributors examine case studies from colonialism, war, politics and slavery from across the globe, as well as drawing examples from literature, philosophy and sites of memory to draw three main conclusions. Firstly, that the relationship between remembering and forgetting is relational rather than 'hermetic', and the space between the two is often occupied by silence. Secondly, silence is a force in itself, capable of stimulating more or less remembrance. Finally, that silence is a necessary and key element in the interaction between the human mind and the 'outer world', and enables people to challenge their understanding of art, music, literature, history and memory.
With an introduction by the editors discussing Memory Studies, and concluding remarks by Astrid Erll, this collection demonstrates that acceptance and consideration of silence as having both a performative and aesthetic dimension is an essential component of history and memory studies.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781138826472
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Alexandre Dessingue is Professor at the Department of Cultural Studies and Languages at the University of Stavanger. His previous publications include Le Polyphonisme du roman (2012) and, co-edited with Olivier Ryckebusch, Dunkirk: City of Memories - Dunkerque, ville-memoire (2011). Jay Winter is the Charles J. Stille Professor of History at Yale University. His previous publications include Remembering War: The Great War between History and Memory in the 20th Century (2006) and Sites of Memory, Sites of Mourning: The Great War in European Cultural History (1995)
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