Source: Rebecca Onion, Slate staff writer, in Arts and Letters Daily, June 9
In a provocative new book, David Rieff questions whether remembering the past can really spare us from repeating it. First paragraph of the review:
In his new book, In Praise of Forgetting: Historical Memory and Its Ironies, journalist David Rieff questions the idea that remembering the past is an inherently virtuous practice that will help us solve present-day problems. It’s a philosophical argument that he pursues across the globe, invoking examples drawn from the histories of the United States, Argentina, Spain, Germany, Bosnia, Israel, and Ireland, among others.
“What if,” Rieff asks, “a decent measure of communal forgetting is actually the sine qua non of a peaceful and decent society, while remembering is the politically, socially, and morally risky pursuit?”