|Tuesday, February 5, 2013||3:00PM - 5:00PM||208N, North House, Munk School of Global Affairs|
1 Devonshire Place
Something interesting has been happening in the iconic zones of American World War II memory. They are filling up with more densely interpreted histories of the war in the form of films, media productions, museum exhibits, historic markers, memorials, tour packages, and so on. This expansion of institutionalized representations of World War II is happening at the very moment in which the generation that experienced the war is passing on. This talk will offer some preliminary reflections on the historical and political forces that converge in this transitional moment. Drawing on ethnographic work in memorial museums, commemorative events, and tourism practices in both Pearl Harbor and Normandy, the talk will ask about the role of memorialization of the ‘good war’ in the ecologies of affect that undergird American national imagination in the era of post-9/11 and post-witness memory making.
Geoffrey White is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Hawaii. His research in Solomon Islands and Hawai‘I on the politics of Pacific War memory [The Pacific Theater: Island Representations of World War II (co-edited, University of Hawai‘I Press 1989) and Island Encounters: Black and White Memories of the Pacific War (co-authored, Smithsonian 1990); Perilous Memories: The Asia Pacific War(s) (co-edited, Duke 2001)] now extends to American war tourism in France.
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