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Title: Communism in retrospect: the rhetoric of historical representation and writing the collective memory of recent past
Authors: Tileaga, Cristian
Keywords: Collective memory
Communism
Eastern Europe
Politics of memory
Representations of recent history
Tismaneanu Report
Romania
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Sage (© the author)
Citation: TILEAGA, C., 2012. Communism in retrospect: the rhetoric of historical representation and writing the collective memory of recent past. Memory Studies, 5, (4), pp. 462-478.
Abstract: Using a case study of official representation of communism in Romania, this article addresses the rhetoric of historical representation and some of the ways in which the collective memory of communism is managed in the context of how post-communist democracies reckon with former regimes. It specifically centres on the public accomplishment of coming to terms with the past in the ‘Tisma˘neanu Report’ condemning communism in Romania. Using an ethnomethodologically inspired critical analysis, the article examines how the report and texts supporting it address the issue of how to take the communist era into public consciousness. The shaping of a specific representation of communism and the making of political-moral judgments in the report is legitimated by (1) treating communism as a category of the macro-social and textually mediated reality, (2) constructing the need for a scientific approach, and (3) conceiving communism as Other, alien to national identity and national interest. General implications for the substance and meaningfulness of coming to terms with recent history are discussed.
Description: This article was published in the journal, Memory Studies [Sage © The Author] and the definitive version is available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1750698011434042
Version: Accepted for publication
DOI: 10.1177/1750698011434042
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/11604
Publisher Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1750698011434042
ISSN: 1750-6980
Appears in Collections:Published Articles (Social Sciences)

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