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"Good nations" and "bad nations": critical theory, judgement and the naturalisation of memory

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date09/2012
JournalInternational Journal for the Semiotics of Law
Journal number3
Volume25
Number of pages16
Pages339-354
Early online date3/05/11
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

This essay investigates the connections between representations of the Holocaust within public memory and within critical theory. It argues that far from offering a critique of that memory, critical theory unwittingly replicates many of its assumptions. This replication appears through acceptance of the assumed distinction between the “good nations” of Western Europe and the “bad nations” of Eastern Europe; those nations who have been remembered as unwilling collaborators, and those deemed more willing, respectively.