“Understanding Our History Is Needed to Build New Co-existence Relationships Based on Mutual Understanding and Respect”

Op-ed by Antonello Nassone at #SilencedVoicesRijeka, Bureau Member of the Coppieters Foundation and University Lecturer

News / 23.11.21

Antonello Nassone, Bureau Member of the Coppieters Foundation and University Lecturer, is a speaker we invited for our conference Silenced Voices: Recovering Forgotten Narratives of European Peoples

In today’s globalized world, everything moves at an impressive speed almost impossible to predict about thirty years ago; the continuous onslaught of images, sounds and words to which we are subjected every day makes the work of memory particularly hard. We feel thrown into an actuality without a name, where we are almost unable to articulate a temporal continuity and where everything, therefore, conspires against memory.

Even the recent upheavals caused by the “cancel culture” originate from a fragmentary and confused reading of history that calls for an image of the past that is instrumental in the process of annihilation of identities typical of globalization.

But memory is the most tenacious defender of identities: thanks to this, the stories, myths and rites that hold a community together are handed down. Memory guarantees the perpetuation of the expressions and conceptions of reality and through it, therefore, a community does not get lost and does not risk disappearing but remains steadfast even in the difficulties it may experience during its historical path, as well as the denial of its existence.

Only by the work of memory, only thanks to its preservation, is it possible to become aware that a given historical interpretation is a mystification. The process of re-appropriation of history will not be a trivial claim in hatred of the other but an affirmation of the existence of a community animated by justice. And the latter will always have to push us to build new co-existence relationships based on mutual understanding and respect.

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Photo by Coppieters Foundation.

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