Remembering and forgetting the past: memory transmission in Greece
Maria Couroucli (CNRS/EHESS)
The memory of the civil war in Greece, sixty years after it ended, is a hot question of debate among historians, politicians and the general public. While the ancient past continues to be the key reference to national identity (Cf. Herzfeld 1987, 1997, among many others), the ambiguity of social memory about the recent past has been less explored and discussed. Focusing on a specific event, the burning of the security police files by the authorities themselves in Athens in August 1989, this paper proposes to examine the difficulties of inter-generational transmission of collective memory in both the private and the public spheres. This implies an investigation of the notion of oblivion in relation to (past) civil violence with specific reference to Loraux's analysis on lethe (oblivion), an opposite of a-letheia (truth).
Recasting pasts and futures: imagination and belonging across generations in Europe