MEMORY NARRATIVES IN CONTEMPORARY LATVIAN AND NORTH AMERICAN LIFE-WRITING
References: 5th International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts SGEM 2018, www.sgemvienna.org, SGEM2018 Vienna ART Conference Proceedings, ISBN 978-619-7408-34-8 / ISSN 2367-5659, 19 - 21 March, 2018, Vol. 5, Issue 6.1; 273-280 pp, DOI: 10.5593/sgemsocial2018H/61/S11.034
The paper investigates memory narratives in contemporary Latvian and North American life-writing with the focus on Latvian writer Anita Liepa’s autobiographical fiction and Canadian writer Alice Munro’s short stories. The theoretical framework of the paper is related to the fast developing memory culture after the end of the Cold War in Europe and Latvia as well as globally, and sketches out the theoretical framework of memory writing referring to the studies of Maurice Halbwachs, Pierre Nora, Paul Ricoeur, Aleida Assmann, Jan Assmann, Vieda Skultans, Ene Kõresaar, Mārtiņš Kaprāns, Baiba Bela-Krūmiņa, James V. Wertsch, Astrid Erll who represent history, philosophy, cultural anthropology, sociology, literary studies. The broad interdisciplinary field provides rich opportunities for dealing with the complex issues of memory and identity.
The specific focus of the paper is on the spatial and temporal aspects of memory representation in A. Liepa’s memory novel "Kumeļa gadi” (Colt Years) (1993) and A. Munro’s “Lives of Girls and Women” (1971) that reveal the familial and communal contexts of memories: parents’ house, native town/village, school, community. The paper also investigates the temporal framing of childhood and adolescence in both author’s works.
Keywords: autobiography, life-writing, Latvian literature, Anita Liepa, Canadian literature, Alice Munro
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