By Nicola King

It really is quite often approved that identification or a feeling of self is built through and during narrative - the tales we inform ourselves and every different approximately our lives. This ebook explores the complicated relationships that exist among reminiscence, nostalgia, writing and identification. the writer examines more than a few autobiographical and first-person fictional texts from holocaust literature, women's writing and renowned fiction. each one textual content foregrounds problems with reminiscence, historical past and trauma within the building of identification. There are shut readings of texts together with Sylvia Fraser's My Father's residence, Margaret Atwood's Cats Eye, Barbara Vine's A DarkAdapted Eye, Toni Morrison's liked, George Perec's W Or the reminiscence of formative years, and Anne Michael's Fugitive items. studying those texts of reminiscence indicates that 'remembering the self' relies now not on restoring an unique identification, yet on 're-membering', on placing prior and current selves jointly, second by means of second, in a technique of provisional reconstruction. it is a powerfu

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Given that she was three at this time, and that this sexual scene later accumulated so much meaning, the absence of the remembering 42 MEMORY, NARRATIVE , IDENTITY moment is striking. If early memories can be recovered in later life, the circumstances and context of their recovery must constitute part of their meaning for the subject. IN SEARCH ‘THE OF A PAST: DARK JOY OF THE PLACE OF FINDING ’ Walter Benjamin suggests that ‘[i]t is to cheat oneself of the richest prize to preserve as a record merely the inventory of one’s discoveries, and not the dark joy of the place of finding itself’ – the moments of remembering which Fraser reconstructs.

The beginning, as a structure determining the shape of a life, is given a location, only to be undone as the analysis proceeds and pushed further and further back into the past, to the point where its real existence may even become unsustainable’ (Marcus 1994: 276). The point of origin of the past and of the self is always in retreat of our attempts to locate it. TERNARY TEMPORAL STRUCTURE As suggested above, Fraser’s autobiography demonstrates not just the threefold structure of Nachträglichkeit but a continuous, ongoing and necessarily incomplete process of translation and retranslation.

MEMORY IN THEORY METAPHORS OF 25 MEMORY It will already have become apparent that it is impossible to imagine or formulate memory and its operations without the use of metaphor. The dominant metaphors employed – often quite unconsciously – within a culture then come to seem part of ‘common sense’, and to determine the ways in which memory can be thought. The popular idea of memory as a video-recorder or storehouse of experiences is contradicted by recent work on the ‘neural networks’ which create and destroy memories in a continuous process.

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