Conceptions of Memory

Term: Fall 2009

Subject Code: GPHI

Course Number: 6099

The conception of memory has been of concern to philosophers at least since Plato. But it has also been of interest to rhetoricians and theologians, writers and artists, and in more recent years, to psychologists and psychoanalysts, political and social theorists and historians, and to neuroscientists and cognitive scientists. In this course we attempt to reach an account of memory, which does justice to some of these approaches. We look at:
(i) Memory and its traces (recent work on memory theory, mostly in philosophy, but with some glimpse from psychology, neuroscience, and the social sciences) (ii) The art of memory (memory before modernity) (iii) Memory, responsibility, and identity (Locke, Nietzsche, contemporary debates) (iv) Memory and trauma (v) Memory and time (Bergson, Proust, Benjamin)

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