Policies of Memory, Politics of Forgetting: A Comparative Study of Social Memory and Cultural Heritage in Brazil and the United States

by Ferreira Samila Pereira

Institution: Texas A&M University
Year: 2016
Keywords: social memory; cultural heritage
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2124007
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1969.1/157930


The comparative study proposed in this research between German-Pomeranians / Brazil and Native Americans Tiguas / USA, despite the differences in the historic and geographic trajectories, highlights similarities in the effects that contemporary public policies may exert in processes of social memory projection and selection of what will and what will not be recognized as cultural heritage. In fact, as current discussions in the fields of Anthropology, memory and cultural heritage suggest, remembering and forgetting are two faces of the same coin. Therefore, processes of identity claims, particularly those fostered in the context of tourism globalization and mass culture, may present the risk of oblivion to other less empowered social groups, therefore constituting a threat to the very tenets of diversity. In this theoretical context social memory and the preservation of heritage references are dependent on contemporary social and political contexts in which remembering and forgetting are negotiated practices, part of heritage and identity strategies of a people. It is from this perspective that I seek to observe the importance of heritage public policies and their effects in the construction of collective memories opposed to the risk of social oblivion. Advisors/Committee Members: Vieira de Castro , Luis Filipe (advisor), Green , Thomas (advisor), Alvard , Michael (committee member), Warden , Robert (committee member).