Chapter

Learning to Forget

Dipankar Gupta

in LEARNING TO FORGET

Published in print December 2005 | ISBN: 9780195674330
Published online October 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081820 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195674330.003.0002
Learning to Forget

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The concerns of the present very clearly, and self-consciously, provide context and perspective to events of the past in comparative history. The context of the present justifies and provides the format for historical comparisons. Comparative history should inspect multiple visions of truth, and this should include stated evaluative positions of the analyst as well. Urban poverty and economic competition frequently express the impression that the past was all arcadian harmony in contrast to the wickedness of contemporary times. It is noted that the past should be made irrelevant to the present. The fraternity and bonding that citizenship brings about are not born out of tradition. Knowledge-states of the future will free societies from the incubus of memory and the burdens of their past, and also satisfy the urge in humans to separate themselves from one another.

Keywords: urban poverty; economic competition; fraternity; bonding; citizenship; memory; knowledge-states

Chapter.  9119 words. 

Subjects: Comparative and Historical Sociology

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