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The claim of the past? : historical consciousness as memory, haunting, and responsibility in Nietzsche and beyond

By Hans Ruin

Abstract

The article provides a new interpretation of the most widely cited essay on historical consciousness, Friedrich Nietzsche?s ?On the use and abuse of history for life? from 1874, reconnecting it to current debates in educational science and the role of the historian and educator in a post-colonial situation. It reminds us how historical consciousness is an always contested and critical space, where our existential commitment to justice is also tested. The interpretation moves beyond the standard understanding of Nietzsche as only favouring a life-affirming use of history. It displays how his argument opens the door toward understanding historical consciousness as a transcultural ethical space of an encounter between the dead and the living. It addresses the contemporary debate in education science concerning the relation and preference between a broader and more limited notion of historical consciousness, questioning the possibility of a conclusive theory of historical consciousness for practical-pedagogical purposes. It exemplifies its conclusions in regard to the legacies of the Holocaust and to Apartheid, as also pedagogical challenges

Topics: Nietzsche, historicity, superhistorical, monumental, unhistorical, memory, forgetting, Holocaust, Apartheid, Philosophy, Filosofi, Educational Sciences, Utbildningsvetenskap
Publisher: 'Informa UK Limited'
Year: 2019
DOI identifier: 10.1080/00220272.2019.1652936
OAI identifier: oai:DiVA.org:sh-39271
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