Partisan Histories is an introduction to the multiple uses of history in contemporary political debate and conflict. As communities reimagine themselves, a contest over defining legitimacy, identifying us and others, and jockeying for political control intersects with fights over history and memory. Here distinguished scholars examine how competing versions of national identity are legitimized through appeals to carefully constructed 'pasts' both in democracies and in repressive regimes. The essays focus on the cases of Armenia, Chile, France, Germany, India and Pakistan, Israel and Palestine, Japan, Nigeria, and the United States to draw broader conclusions about the worldwide effect of traumatic memory, questions of punishment and restitution, and the instrumentalization of the past for political purposes.
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PROFESSOR PADRAIC KENNEY is Associate Professor of History at the University of Colorado, USA. He is the author of Rebuilding Poland: Workers and Communists 1945-1950 (Cornell University Press, 1997), and A Carnival of Revolution: Central Europe 1989 (Princeton University Press, 2002).
MAX PAUL FRIEDMAN is Assistant Professor at Florida State University, USA. He is the author of Nazis and Good Neighbors: The United States Campaign against the Germans of Latin America in World War II (Cambridge University Press).
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