Greeks' and Germans' representations of world events: Selective memory and voluntary oblivion
This research investigates events composing world social memory and oblivion. Participants, 243 Greek and German students, were asked to write three world history events that they wished to remember and three others that they wished to forget and then to evaluate them in terms of their positiveness and importance. Correspondence Analysis (SPAD) was applied to data. Results indicated that: a) All the events of world social memory and oblivion are important. Pleasant and positive events are arranged in social world memory whereas unpleasant and negative ones in social oblivion. b) Τhe content of world social memory is objectified in World War II and the socio-political events that occurred in Europe during the second half of the 20th century. c) World social memory is Eurocentric and is characterized by recency or “last years/century” bias. d) Membership in a national group functions as a filter for the choice of world historical past. Greeks and Germans are anchored to their own historical past.