Issues of public history continue to raise important questions on both sides of the Tasman. From the attacks on Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu and Invasion day protests in Australia, to the ongoing effects of the New Zealand Wars and the compulsory teaching of history in Aotearoa New Zealand’s schools, more and more people are grappling with narratives about the past. Writing for Overland Literary Journal, this article reflects on Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History by Haitian writer Michel-Rolph Trouillot. As we question what stories are remembered and what stories are forgotten, Trouillot and the scores of critical writers since remind us of how power relations continue to shape history; how context matters; and how, sometimes, remembering alone is not enough.
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