Rites of Return: Diaspora Poetics and the Politics of Memoryby Marianne Hirsch
The first decade of the twenty-first century witnessed a passionate engagement with the losses of the past. Rites of Return examines the effects of this legacy of historical injustice and documented suffering on the politics of the present. Twenty-four writers, historians, literary and cultural critics, anthropologists and sociologists, visual artists, legal/i>
The first decade of the twenty-first century witnessed a passionate engagement with the losses of the past. Rites of Return examines the effects of this legacy of historical injustice and documented suffering on the politics of the present. Twenty-four writers, historians, literary and cultural critics, anthropologists and sociologists, visual artists, legal scholars, and curators grapple with our contemporary ethical endeavor to redress enduring inequities and retrieve lost histories. Mapping bold and broad-based responses to past injury across Eastern Europe, Africa, Latin America, Australia, the Middle East, and the United States, Rites of Return examines new technologies of genetic and genealogical research, memoirs about lost family histories, the popularity of roots-seeking journeys, organized trauma tourism at sites of atrocity and new Museums of Conscience, and profound connections between social rites and political and legal rights of return.
Contributors include: Lila Abu-Lughod, Columbia University; Nadia Abu El-Haj, Barnard College; Elazar Barkan, Columbia University; Svetlana Boym, Harvard University; Saidiya Hartman, Columbia University; Amira Hass, journalist; Jarrod Hayes, University of Michigan; Marianne Hirsch, Columbia University; Eva Hoffman, writer; Margaret Homans, Yale University; Rosanne Kennedy, Australian National University; Daniel Mendelsohn, writer; Susan Meiselas, photographer; Nancy K. Miller, CUNY Graduate Center; Alondra Nelson, Columbia University; Jay Prosser, University of Leeds; Liz Sevchenko, Coalition of Museums of Conscience; Leo Spitzer, Dartmouth College; Marita Sturken New York University; Diana Taylor, New York University; Patricia J. Williams, Columbia University
This broad-ranging collection brings into focus a set of approachestechno-scientific, personal, and globalthat add to the ever-compelling topics of identity, rootedness, mobility, and return. With its fascinating new perspectives, this book demonstrates the importance of memory studies for a better understanding of the future.
What People are saying about this
A stellar cast of scholars, writers, engaged journalists, and public intellectuals explore some of the most pressing issues of our time. Writing (and speaking) in voices urgent and intimate, public and political, these contributors transport readers across generations and national borders to ask what it means to belong to a place or a people in an age of overlapping claims and occupied territories.
What most distinguishes this accomplished and thought-provoking volume is its textured conceptual approach and resistance to facile formulations of identity, identification, loss, and return. The essays individually and cumulatively wrestle with a complex, shifting set of competing claims and elusive legacies. However we define 'home' and 'origins', this collection reminds us that there is no overarching narrative that will satisfy all historical and political desires for recognition and recovery, and the experiences that shape us personally and familially have global implications.
Bella Brodzki, Sarah Lawrence College
Meet the Author
Marianne Hirsch is William Peterfield Trent Professor of English and Comparative Literature and Gender Studies at Columbia University. Her most recent books are Ghosts of Home: The Afterlife of Czernowitz in Jewish Memory, written with Leo Spitzer, and The Generation of Postmemory: Writing and Visual Culture After the Holocaust.
Nancy K. Miller is Distinguished Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. Her most recent books are But Enough About Me: Why We Read Other People's Lives and the family memoir, What They Saved: Pieces of a Jewish Past.
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