By Siobhan Kattago

Ambiguous reminiscence examines the position of reminiscence within the construction of a brand new nationwide identification in reunified Germany. the writer keeps that the contentious debates surrounding modern monumnets to the Nazi previous testify to the paradox of German reminiscence and the ongoing hyperlink of Nazism with modern German nationwide id. The booklet discusses how convinced monuments, and the methods Germans have considered them, give a contribution to the various methods Germans have handled the prior, and the way they proceed to house it as one kingdom. Kattago concludes that West Germans have internalized their Nazi previous as a normative orientation for the democratic tradition of West Germany, whereas East Germans have universalized Nazism and the Holocaust, remodeling it into an abstraction during which the Jewish query is down performed. with a view to shape a brand new collective reminiscence, the writer argues that unified Germany needs to take care of those conflicting perspectives of the previous, incorporating sure features of either perspectives. offering a topography of East, West, and unified German reminiscence in the course of the Nineteen Eighties and the Nineteen Nineties, this paintings contributes to a greater realizing of up to date nationwide identification and society. the writer indicates how public debate over such concerns at Ronald Reagan's stopover at to Bitburg, the renarration of Buchenwald as Nazi and Soviet internment camp, the Goldhagen controversy, and the Holocaust Memorial debate in Berlin give a contribution to the complexities surrounding the best way Germans see themselves, their dating to the earlier, and their destiny id as a country. In a cautious research, the writer indicates how the previous was once used and abused by way of either the East and the West within the Nineteen Eighties, and the way those ways merged within the Nineteen Nineties. This fascinating new paintings takes a sociological method of the position of reminiscence in forging a brand new, integrative nationwide id.

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Extra resources for Ambiguous Memory: The Nazi Past and German National Identity

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Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (New York: Verso, 1983; 1991), 6-7. 49. , 204. 50. , 11. 51. , 22. 52. , 35-36. 53. , 49. 54. Etienne Balibar, "The Nation Form: History and Ideology," in Race, Nation, Class: Ambiguous Identities, ed. Etienne Balibar and Immanuel Wallerstein (New York: Verso, 1988; 1991), 86. 55. Ibid. 56. , 96. 57. , 93. 58. , 94. 59. Eric Hobsbawm, "Introduction: Inventing Traditions," in The Invention of Tradition, ed.

Foucault distinguishes between a dominant memory and countermemories. Others, such as John Connerton, argue for social memory. 12. Halbwachs, The Collective Memory, 48. 13. Maurice Halbwachs, On Collective Memory, trans. Lewis Coser (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1941; 1992), 173. 14. , 72. 15. , 51. 16. Halbwachs, The Collective Memory, 83-84. 17. , 85. 18. For further discussions of generational memory, see Howard Schumann and Jacqueline Scott, "Generations and Collective Memories," American Sociological Review 54 (1989): 359-381.

15. , 51. 16. Halbwachs, The Collective Memory, 83-84. 17. , 85. 18. For further discussions of generational memory, see Howard Schumann and Jacqueline Scott, "Generations and Collective Memories," American Sociological Review 54 (1989): 359-381. 19. Halbwachs, The Collective Memory, 78. 20. Jan Assman, "Collective Memory and Cultural Identity," trans. John Czaplicka, New German Critique 65 (Spring/Summer 1995): 125-133. Originally published as "Kollektives Gedachtnis und kulturelle Identitat" in his Kultur und Gedachtnis (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1988).

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