Pedagogy and the Call to Witnessing Marc Chagall’s White Crucifixion

  • Roger I. Simon


Practices of remembrance work on and through us. Understood pedagogically, assertions about the past articulated into images and narratives and deployed in social space do not divest people of their desire or obligations to remember. Rather, the intended function of such practices is to animate and mediate the process of remembering. In this perspective, historical memory is an ensemble of educative acts, not simply aimed at establishing, affirming, or correcting “the record,” but most importantly intended as practices that enable a living memory—one that dialectically presses on the sense of one’s future purposes and possibilities. The antithesis of a living memory is a frozen one; a form of remembrance in which the past is nothing but the past. In contradistinction, practices of remembrance whose aim is the formation of living memory attempt to evoke the witnessing of historical images and narratives, the consequence of which is a nonsynchronous reconfiguration of past and present.


Jewish People Figural Ambiguity Christian Theology Historical Memory Historical Consciousness 
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© Roger I. Simon 2005

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  • Roger I. Simon

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