Summary: The topic of memory has moved to prominence in recent years. This is partly due to a spate of anniversaries and commemorations of events, such as the Holocaust and the Second World War, whose significance for the present is affirmed even as their meanings continue to be debated.
In Germany and France, contested memories, representations, and commemorations of this period have become a defining feature of the political culture. Equally contested are France' ...show mores memories of a decolonization process whose legacy still makes its presence felt in the political landscape.
Vectors of Memory examines in detail a range of conduits of memorial activity: historiography, war crimes trials, novels, and films that have focused public attention and debate in this era of so-called "commemorative obsession." More than a descriptive summary of such developments, the author elucidates the identity politics expressed through these channels. In the course of these investigations, concepts such as sites of memory, testimony, and trauma-much invoked in recent work on collective memory-are critically examined in a number of historical, juridical and representational contexts.
Interdisciplinary in its scope and in the manner in which it bridges historiographical and cultural analysis, this book will appeal to students and scholars of history, cultural and media studies, French and German political culture, Holocaust studies, and postcolonialism. ...show less