In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

Book Reviews 161 that concern is, unfortunately can help to obscure the ultimacy of the Fuhrer's "Final Solution ofthe Jewish Question." It is the specificity ofthis one people chosen for total annihilation that connects the Nazis' massive campaign with foregoing historical efforts to eliminate the Jewish presence by one means or another. The need to remember this is pointed up by the recent world-wide expansion of antisemitic hostility and acts, and by the growing acceptance of the deniers' efforts, despite the vast array of documentation and evidence to the contrary. In a book as challenging as this it is unfortunate that many printing errors mar the work. While most do not interfere with the flow of thought, some are more serious: in 1991 President Bush called for the repeal of the "72 infamous" yeas, not nays, in the 1975 U.N. vote declaring Zionism to be racism (p. 73); the number of "50,000" Jews applies not to "all" the thirty-five cities or areas listed but each of them (p. 74); the remark concerning A. C. J. Phillips' comment should read, "This statement ... occupies the moral high ground of which Jews are accused of having abandoned ..." (p. 124); there is an incomplete sentence at the end of the second full paragraph on p. 164; and names of authors cited should , \ be corrected to Gerald Fleming (p. 27), Annette Insdotf (p. 29), and G. Korman (p. 43). Flaws notwithstanding, this is a book to be read and reread, for Garber challenges us and helps us as we continue to wrestle with the disturbing and ongoing questions raised by the Shoah. Alice 1. Eckardt Lehigh University Frames of Remembrance: The Dynamics of Collective Memory, by Iwona Irwin-Zarecka. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Publishers, 1994. 214 pp. $32.95. "Collective memory" has become one of the most fashionable-and elusive-analytical categories of the past decade. Twentieth-century challenges oftotalitarianism and postmodernism have made its themes and issues at once compelling and confusing. It has meant everything from realities of the past to needs in the present. It has included "remembering " by individuals, groups, and cultures or the institutions they inhabit. It has included texts and contexts as well as personal and political agendas. It has referred to the authenticity or the accuracy of an account. It evokes shame, pride, guilt, celebration, and mourning. Drawing from many 162 SHOFAR Winter 1996 Vol. 14, NO.2 disciplines, it has been studied to illuminate moral values, identity, cognitive processes, political goals, and narratives. Iwona Irwin-Zarecka conceived of Frames of Remembrance as a "'meeting place' allowing for an exchange ofideas, concerns, and feelings" in order to "uncover the rules, the normative order of remembrance" (pp. 10, 18); She conceives of "collective memory" mainly as "memory work." By this she means the ways that individuals and institutions engage, evade, and present cultural experiences. Although she often restates her conviction that interpretations of memory should not be abstracted from particular contexts or remembrance, she does not develop any contexts fully enough to convey rich dynamics of remembrance in action. Although she refers to the controversy surrounding the Royal Ontario Museum's 1990 "Into the Heart of Africa" exhibit, she retells the same summary of its significance three times without at any point digging deeply into that controversy. She makes the same generalized reference on five occasions to controversy about the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial (which she misnames ), but she does not explain what are actually many issues and layers of controversy with any depth. The strength and originality of this book come not from the attempt to define general laws, which were disappointingly abstract and remote for this reader, but from insight she has developed from her own earlier experience in studying Polish-Jewish relations from the perspective of a Jewish immigrant from Poland to Canada. This book is most successful when it is explicitly informed by issues of Holocaust remembrance in Poland. With this grounding, for example, she joins Michael Schudson in insisting that the realities of the past do and should contain the stories we can make up about the past. With this grounding, she has fresh things to say about how cultures...


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 161-163
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.