Remembering in ruins: Touching, seeing and feeling the past in Nostalgia de la luz/Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011)

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

In the wake of the atrocities of the twentieth century in countries across Latin America, the question of how to reconcile with past trauma and move towards a more peaceful future has often been fraught and divisive, with little consensus as to how and what to remember or whether to even remember at all. In Chile, the 1990 transition from dictatorship to democracy is several decades in the past, yet debates about memory and justice, and the quest to find the bodies of those disap-peared by the State during the dictatorship, continue unresolved. This article exam-ines the documentary film Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011), made by Chilean film-maker Patricio Guzmán and asks: How is memory documented, preserved, constructed and transmitted through documentary film? Can and how does the very materiality of memory become a historiographical strategy? What is the relation-ship between materiality and memory? Ultimately, the article argues that the film performs an affective, polyvocal, temporally layered memory mapping that both works to explore and elucidate the ongoing influence of the past in the present, and to intervene in the contemporary memory landscape.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)265-281
Number of pages17
JournalStudies in Spanish and Latin American Cinemas
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

Fingerprint

nostalgia
Data storage equipment
documentary film
dictatorship
Chile
trauma
Nostalgia
Remembering
Ruin
Latin America
Ships
twentieth century
justice
democracy
present

Keywords

  • Chile
  • Documentary film
  • Materiality
  • Memory
  • Patricio Guzmán
  • Place and space
  • Post-dictatorship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Communication

Cite this

@article{8e4c63c50a174503bf42becab620a3c6,
title = "Remembering in ruins: Touching, seeing and feeling the past in Nostalgia de la luz/Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011)",
abstract = "In the wake of the atrocities of the twentieth century in countries across Latin America, the question of how to reconcile with past trauma and move towards a more peaceful future has often been fraught and divisive, with little consensus as to how and what to remember or whether to even remember at all. In Chile, the 1990 transition from dictatorship to democracy is several decades in the past, yet debates about memory and justice, and the quest to find the bodies of those disap-peared by the State during the dictatorship, continue unresolved. This article exam-ines the documentary film Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011), made by Chilean film-maker Patricio Guzm{\'a}n and asks: How is memory documented, preserved, constructed and transmitted through documentary film? Can and how does the very materiality of memory become a historiographical strategy? What is the relation-ship between materiality and memory? Ultimately, the article argues that the film performs an affective, polyvocal, temporally layered memory mapping that both works to explore and elucidate the ongoing influence of the past in the present, and to intervene in the contemporary memory landscape.",
keywords = "Chile, Documentary film, Materiality, Memory, Patricio Guzm{\'a}n, Place and space, Post-dictatorship",
author = "Murphy, {Kaitlin M.}",
year = "2016",
month = "9",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1386/slac.13.3.265_1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "13",
pages = "265--281",
journal = "Studies in Spanish and Latin American Cinemas",
issn = "2050-4837",
publisher = "Intellect Ltd.",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Remembering in ruins

T2 - Touching, seeing and feeling the past in Nostalgia de la luz/Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011)

AU - Murphy, Kaitlin M.

PY - 2016/9/1

Y1 - 2016/9/1

N2 - In the wake of the atrocities of the twentieth century in countries across Latin America, the question of how to reconcile with past trauma and move towards a more peaceful future has often been fraught and divisive, with little consensus as to how and what to remember or whether to even remember at all. In Chile, the 1990 transition from dictatorship to democracy is several decades in the past, yet debates about memory and justice, and the quest to find the bodies of those disap-peared by the State during the dictatorship, continue unresolved. This article exam-ines the documentary film Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011), made by Chilean film-maker Patricio Guzmán and asks: How is memory documented, preserved, constructed and transmitted through documentary film? Can and how does the very materiality of memory become a historiographical strategy? What is the relation-ship between materiality and memory? Ultimately, the article argues that the film performs an affective, polyvocal, temporally layered memory mapping that both works to explore and elucidate the ongoing influence of the past in the present, and to intervene in the contemporary memory landscape.

AB - In the wake of the atrocities of the twentieth century in countries across Latin America, the question of how to reconcile with past trauma and move towards a more peaceful future has often been fraught and divisive, with little consensus as to how and what to remember or whether to even remember at all. In Chile, the 1990 transition from dictatorship to democracy is several decades in the past, yet debates about memory and justice, and the quest to find the bodies of those disap-peared by the State during the dictatorship, continue unresolved. This article exam-ines the documentary film Nostalgia for the Light ([2010] 2011), made by Chilean film-maker Patricio Guzmán and asks: How is memory documented, preserved, constructed and transmitted through documentary film? Can and how does the very materiality of memory become a historiographical strategy? What is the relation-ship between materiality and memory? Ultimately, the article argues that the film performs an affective, polyvocal, temporally layered memory mapping that both works to explore and elucidate the ongoing influence of the past in the present, and to intervene in the contemporary memory landscape.

KW - Chile

KW - Documentary film

KW - Materiality

KW - Memory

KW - Patricio Guzmán

KW - Place and space

KW - Post-dictatorship

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85020271008&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85020271008&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1386/slac.13.3.265_1

DO - 10.1386/slac.13.3.265_1

M3 - Review article

AN - SCOPUS:85020271008

VL - 13

SP - 265

EP - 281

JO - Studies in Spanish and Latin American Cinemas

JF - Studies in Spanish and Latin American Cinemas

SN - 2050-4837

IS - 3

ER -