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The Art of ForgettingDisgrace and Oblivion in Roman Political Culture$
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Harriet I. Flower

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780807830635

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807877463_flower

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Clementis' Hat The Politics of Memory Sanctions and the Shape of Forgetting

Clementis' Hat The Politics of Memory Sanctions and the Shape of Forgetting

(p.1) Chapter I Clementis' Hat The Politics of Memory Sanctions and the Shape of Forgetting
The Art of Forgetting

Harriet I. Flower

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter presents some introductory Roman and Greek thoughts about the character of remembering and forgetting, and notes that memory sanctions are deliberately designed strategies that aim to change the picture of the past, whether through erasure or redefinition, or by means of both. It emphasizes that memory sanctions are designed to preserve and to protect the special memory space of the community and its political system. The chapter explains that such sanctions are designed to label potential threats, especially the threat of tyranny posed by the individual who becomes too powerful or the menace of war from the traitor who undermines the security of the state by allying with its foreign enemies. It exemplifies Clementis' fur hat as a representation of the meager traces that have escaped the ravages of memory sanctions, even as it illustrates the pressing need felt by those who want to change the future, to change the picture of the past at the same time.

Keywords:   Roman, Greek, remembering, forgetting, memory sanctions, redefinition, political system, future, past

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