Monday, October 01, 2012

"Migrancy, Culture, Identity" by Iain Chambers

"Writing is re-presentation, a simulation of what has been lost to it. History comes to us not as raw, bleeding facts but in textual production, in narratives woven by desire (for truth) and a will (for power). Such knowledge amounts to the violence, the force, that activates thought. For it deals with a memory that knows the impossibility of ever fully knowing either itself or the past. What are transcribed and translated are traces, residues, shadows and echoes. Here there is no obvious clarity to be narrated but rather a continual sorting through the debris of time. And as the accounting of the past constantly prefigures new questions, or else the most ancient of demands in new constellations, the chronicle is continually being re-written, re-viewed, re-presented. The resulting narrative can only be historical and fragmentary, structured and open, continuous and interrupted. For historiography involves both the re-membering adn the re-covering of the past: its temporary coherence simultaneously invokes disclosure and disguise." Chambers, Iain. Migrancy, Culture, Identity. London: Routledge, 1994. Print.

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