Signs of the Holocaust: exhibiting memory in a mediated age

Hoskins, A. (2003) Signs of the Holocaust: exhibiting memory in a mediated age. Media, Culture and Society, 25(1), pp. 7-22. (doi:10.1177/0163443703025001631)

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Publisher's URL: http://mcs.sagepub.com/

Abstract

In our globally mediated age our relationship with the past is increasingly interpreted through the lens of our presentist media. Conventional means of representing and remembering historical events have to some extent been superseded, with technological advances permitting increasingly electronically mediated viewpoints. Indeed, new generations, fed on a diet of instantaneous information, possess new expectations of how the past should be viewed. This creates a problem for historians keen to retain a purist perspective on events, and, especially in respect of the Holocaust, the contemporary representation of which is the subject of much critical discourse and debate. This article examines one site of contemporary Holocaust representation: the Holocaust Exhibition housed at the Imperial War Museum, London. I consider whether the designers’ objectives in seeking an ‘authentic’ sampling of objects of this event - providing real ‘signs’ of the Holocaust - is adequate to the expectations of visitors of a post-Holocaust generation. This involves exploring how the exhibition positions ‘history’ and ‘memory’, with the latter viewed as problematic in relation to an event constructed historically as both unique and incomparable

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Hoskins, Professor Andrew
Authors: Hoskins, A.
College/School:College of Social Sciences
Journal Name:Media, Culture and Society
Publisher:Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN:0163-4437
ISSN (Online):1460-3675

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