The Past is a Foreign Country

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, Nov 14, 1985 - History - 489 pages
8 Reviews
In this remarkably wide-ranging book Professor Lowenthal analyses the ever-changing role of the past in shaping our lives. A heritage at once nurturing and burdensome, the past allows us to make sense of the present whilst imposing powerful constraints upon the way that present develops. Some aspects of the past are celebrated, others expunged, as each generation reshapes its legacy in line with current needs. Drawing on all the arts, the humanities and the social sciences, the author uses sources as diverse as science fiction and psychoanalysis to examine how rebellion against inherited tradition has given rise to the modern cult of preservation and pervasive nostalgia. Profusely illustrated, The Past is a Foreign Country shows that although the past has ceased to be a sanction for inherited power or privilege, as a focus of personal and national identity and as a bulwark against massive and distressing change it remains as potent a force as ever in human affairs.
  

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Review: The Past is a Foreign Country

User Review  - Julie - Goodreads

I read this in grad school for a historic preservation class. Many of my classmates complained bitterly about reading Lowenthal, but I was intrigued by the depth of his knowledge. It warmed the ... Read full review

Review: The Past is a Foreign Country

User Review  - Ryan Speer - Goodreads

This isn't as busy as Michael Kammen's "Mystic Chords of Memory" (a good companion piece). Is dense and impressionistic the only way to write about this topic? Read full review

Contents

IV
3
V
4
VI
13
VII
21
VIII
28
IX
35
X
36
XI
52
XXIV
187
XXV
193
XXVI
210
XXVII
238
XXVIII
249
XXIX
261
XXX
263
XXXI
265

XII
63
XIII
69
XIV
74
XV
75
XVI
87
XVII
96
XVIII
105
XIX
125
XX
127
XXI
148
XXII
183
XXIII
185
XXXII
290
XXXIII
324
XXXIV
363
XXXV
364
XXXVI
369
XXXVII
376
XXXVIII
384
XXXIX
407
XL
410
XLI
413
XLII
471
Copyright

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About the author (1985)

David Lowenthal is Emeritus Professor of Geography and Honorary Research Fellow at University College London. He is a gold medallist of the Royal Geographical, the Royal Scottish Geographical and the American Geographical Societies, a Fellow of the British Academy and honorary D.Litt. Memorial University of Newfoundland. In 2010 he was awarded the Forbes Lecture Prize by the International Institute for Conservation. His books include The Heritage Crusade and the Spoils of History (1996), George Perkins Marsh, Prophet of Conservation (2000) and The Nature of Cultural Heritage and the Culture of National Heritage (2005).

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