Déjà vu : aberrations of cultural memory by Peter Krapp

By Peter Krapp

Concerning a prior that by no means was once, déjà vu stocks a constitution not just with fiction, but additionally with the ever extra subtle results of media know-how. Tracing the time period from the top of the 19th century, while it used to be first popularized within the pages of the Revue philosophique, Peter Krapp examines the family tree and background of the singular and unrepeatable adventure of déjà vu. This provocative booklet deals a fresh counterpoint to the clichéd celebrations of cultural reminiscence and forces us do a double tackle the sanctimonious warnings opposed to forgetting so universal in our time.

Disturbances of cultural memory—screen stories, fake recognitions, premonitions—disrupt the relaxation sector of memorial tradition: strictly conversing, déjà vu is neither a failure of reminiscence nor a sort of forgetting. Krapp’s research of such disturbances in literature, paintings, and mass media introduces, historicizes, and theorizes what it capacity to talk of an economic system of consciousness or distraction. attaining from the early psychoanalytic texts of Sigmund Freud to the performs of Heiner Müller, this exploration of the consequences of déjà vu pivots round the paintings of Walter Benjamin and comprises readings of kitsch and air of secrecy in Andy Warhol’s paintings, of cinematic violence and likely exaggerated claims approximately taking pictures and slicing, of the memorial personality of structure, and of the excessive expectancies raised by way of the net

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4 The irritating two-pronged effect of forgetting, he points out, is that focusing, deliberate concentration, or heightened attention prove powerless, and that instead of the forgotten piece of information, another one “persists in coming back,” as Freud puts it. 5 For the first problem in analysis would seem to be the detailed recollection of the patients’ communication; Freud’s technique is to “reject the use of any special expedient” or aidememoire. ” It should thus seem logical that to distract oneself from the task could help, that a diversion is even necessary.

44 If this were the case, there is no reason to assume this could not have happened again after the publication of the essay on fausse mémoire. 45 In fact it is this very suspension that, instead of arresting the scene, lends its energy to Freud’s complex formula for the psychopathological slip that hides behind amnesia. With the assumption of irony and possibly self-irony, we return to the “sincerity” of any such conclusion. We ought therefore to entertain the question whether the structure of screen memories corresponds with (or can be reduced to) what Jean-Paul Sartre called bad faith, in his attempt to update Freud.

The anticipated resolution of such complex observations may just be a matter of “therapy,” a term derived from the ancient SECRET AGENTS Greek word for service. 62 Our contemporary understanding of the word derives from this use; its medical connotations of nurture and maintenance are present in the Greek root, although the notion of treatment surely has undergone historical transformations. Arguably, this service in which téchne is only an extension of natural poietic ability, a service that is interesting less for its form than for its application, differs from a production of meaning (as an invention of differences), which often characterizes analytic activity.

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