Events and Images of the Past in Historical and Cultural Memory

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Abstract. Historical memory, “short” one, that embraces events of the immediate past, and “mediated”, “long-term”, is an integral part of culture of a human society. And such an important feature of culture as historical consciousness of an epoch defines its special type of organization of accumulated historical experience. The paper considers various interpretations of the phenomenon of memory in the fields of philosophy, psychology, philology, cultural studies. The main attention is paid to the concept of super-individual memory, understood as a continuous process during which a society is forming and maintaining its identity by means of various mechanisms of memorization of events in social consciousness and reconstruction of “the common past” each time proceeding from requirements of the present in corresponding actual perspective. Opposing both identification of history with memory or their absolute incompatibility, the author proposes to turn to complex analysis of rational, mental and emotional components of “the image of the past” and their alignment at different levels of its formation.

Keywords: event, social memory, historical memory, the past, culture, historical consciousness, identity.

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