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historical memory


  • 9/11's Memorials and the Politics of Historical Memory

    by Marita Sturken

    Major 9/11 memorials try to fix the public memory on a moment of national unity that, 20 years later, seems illusory. Other memorials point the way to using the force of memory to encourage critical reflection on nationalism.



  • Germany Faced its Horrible Past. Can the US Do the Same?

    by Michele Norris

    "A full accounting of slavery is one of terror and trauma, and for decades the natural inclination was to ask, why would anyone want to claim that history?... What happens if we don’t?" Michele Norris's essay features University of Texas historian Daina Ramey Berry.


  • To Save Democracy, We Need Historical Memory to be "Hot"

    by Shannon Bontrager

    Historical memory can run hot or cold; hot memory, when we make ourselves vulnerable to the pain of the past, is a force that will ensure America doesn't just move on from the needless death of the COVID pandemic or the violence of the Capitol insurrection without committing to justice and accountability.



  • We Are Still Living the Legacy of World War II

    by Tom Hanks

    The actor Tom Hanks reflects on the false narrative of closure of World War II. The forces unleashed by war and the struggle to reshape the world resonate today. 



  • How History Turns Riots Into Tea Parties

    by Stacy Schiff

    For years Boston hesitated to erect a monument to the rabble-rousers of 1770. We do not care for the revolutionary spirit to survive the revolution. The revolution, however, goes nowhere without it.



  • How to Confront a Racist National History

    by Isaac Chotiner

    "But we have to acknowledge that we’re not upholding history, we’re upholding values, and those are not the values that we want in the twenty-first century."