chapter  7
12 Pages

Public silences, private voices: Memory games in a maritime heritage complex


No one has ever paid much attention to Nietzsche when, accounting for an expensive surplus of history for life, he stated that it is “completely impossible to live without forgetting” (1874). This argument seems to be completely at odds with the general value that is assigned to remembering, instead of forgetting, in modern and contemporary times. In a recent seminal paper, Paul Connerton (2008) precisely notes that forgetting is often seen as a failure whereas remembering is seen as a virtue. No one is proud of having forgotten people, names, facts, events. This is usually considered a fault, the lack of a faculty or a kind of malfunction that generally fails to convey our sense of historically laden individual or collective self.