What was the legacy of the 1871 Paris Commune at the time of the Russian Revolution of 1905? Was it understood as part of an obsolete revolutionary tradition or as something new? The French left responded equivocally even as the 1905 revolution provided a comparison, and as Lenin identified the practical lessons of 1871. Once the Bolsheviks came to power, the Commune would be given new life as a legitimizing agent for the USSR. French Communists would also adopt the Leninist reading. This article examines the "rupture" of 1905 and the transformation of the revolutionary tradition from the perspective of the French left, Parisian workers and Russian émigrés, and in light of the funeral of the former Communard Louise Michel.
Ruling elites often make pernicious national myths for instrumental purposes, creating divergent historical memories of the same events in different countries. But they tend to exploit international history disputes only when they feel insecure domestically. Societal reactions to elite mythmaking, reflected in radicalized public opinion, can reinforce history disputes. During the 1950s–1970s, China avoided history disputes with Japan to focus on geostrategic interests. Only from the early 1980s did domestic political incentives motivate Beijing to attack Japanese historical memory and promote assertive nationalism through patriotic history propaganda, which radicalized Chinese popular views about Japan. Media highlighting of Japan's historical revisionism exacerbated societal demands to settle war accounts with Japan, while factional politics within the Chinese Communist Party made it difficult for the top leaders to compromise on the bilateral "history issue."
Drawing on newspaper articles, contemporary architectural writings, diaries and archival records, this essay examines National Socialism's afterlife in the early Federal Republic in a local context. Focusing on debates that shaped the postwar reconstruction of Bremen's historic market square and its monuments, it shows how complicated the recovery of local history proved to be. The interplay of silence on issues of guilt, narratives of victimization and stories of reconstruction explains why postwar efforts to reestablish a historically grounded sense of Heimat furthered the acceptance of the Federal Republic but retained a tentative, provisional feel a decade after the war's end.
Since the instigation of the peace process in Northern Ireland, issues relating to the commemoration of the political conflict there have moved to center stage in media, political, cultural and academic discourses. This essay locates the film Bloody Sunday (Paul Greengrass, 2002) within the framework of a growing body of literature on historical trauma and memory studies in order to explicate the ways in which it discursively "works through" a historical event of traumatic magnitude. Analysis considers the film's relationship to its historical referent, memorial activity at its contemporary moment of production, and generic modes of address specific to the docudrama.
Historians are dumb witnesses to a culture wrangling with itself about its criminal past if they only narrate the sequence of historical controversies such as those that have dotted the German public landscape since the Holocaust. They need to be alive to the subterranean biblical themes flowing beneath the surface froth of events, linking past and present through the continuity of German political emotions that are necessarily collective and therefore sensitive to anxieties about accusations of collective, inherited sin. This article argues that the guilt/shame couplet so common both in public German and academic discourses about postwar Germany cannot account for the intergenerational transmission of moral pollution signified by Holocaust memory. In order to understand the dynamics of German political emotions, it is more useful to employ an alternative couplet: stigma and sacrifice.