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18 April 2020

Document, Archive, Memory in the Context of George Orwell’s Literary Heritage

Sumy Historical and Archival Journal
Document, Archive, Memory in the Context of George Orwell’s Literary Heritage

The article is devoted to the current topic of modern archival science — preserving the documentary heritage of mankind through information “cumulative” systems, in particular documents and archives. Particular attention is given to the role of the state, the individual and the society in constituting memory. There are two types of memory: individual and collective, that is, culture. Memory, document, archive — concepts and categories are polysemantic. Integral, broad-based importance belongs to culture (collective memory), which is seen as the interaction of the contemporary with the past in multifaceted socio-cultural manifestations. Collective memory, like individual memory, has its own traits of identification, serving as traces of the past. Memory is maintained through various forms of social existence (book, document, museum exhibit, antique item, etc.) and institutional cultural systems (museum, archive, library, etc.). The metadiscourse of the study was George Orwell’s “1984” novel Utopia, which uncovers the path of a free-spirited person with a distorted worldview to attempt to protect the memory space in the name of memory of the past and preserve it. The most important condition for an adequate examination of the social significance of documents in order to keep them permanently is to determine the degree of documentation of the reality of social relations, as well as the degree of representation and possible reconstruction, in addition to public memory focused on the life of an individual, and the memory of emotional. The author’s narrative in the form of diaries, memoirs and letters allows to reveal individual impressions of time, each specific epoch in the history of mankind. Everyday life forms an attitude towards documentary heritage at the domestic level, and the sphere of professional activity is an awareness of responsibility for the creation of history in the future on the basis of preserved data on a national, global scale. The influence of the form of government, the level of development of civil society, the degree of freedom and the will of every citizen on the formation of world memory are also pointed out.

Source: Bezdrabko V. (2019) Document, Archive, Memory in the Context of George Orwell’s Literary Heritage. Sumy Historical and Archival Journal. № XXXIІІ: 5-13

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