“Human memory is a marvellous but fallacious instrument.” Primo Levi
Nostalgia is once again en vogue. Political leaders from the US to the UK, Russia to Turkey like to hark back to a fictional golden era when their respective countries enjoyed the power and respect they feel is their due. But a country’s history is not a fixed entity. Rather, it is constantly rewritten and reinterpreted, often in ways that glorify the past of its raconteurs and frame their own political actions as part of a continuous historical narrative. This month we focus on the way in which memory and historical interpretation are used to further political goals.