Lore, or the Implicated Witness: Rachel Seiffert’s Postmemory Work

Chapter

Abstract

Rachel Seiffert’s story “Lore” registers a shift in narrative perspective from the victim to the perpetrator found in recent memory work. Baackmann argues that instead of validating reassuring binaries that prop up an illusionary but clear-cut moral regime, this text confronts unstable degrees of implication. Moreover, she shows how Seiffert utilizes the perpetrator perspective to address the question of implication in histories of violence that extend to the reader. Since the juvenile protagonist is both seemingly innocent and defined along the contours of the “implicated subject,” the reader is fundamentally challenged to rethink the possibility of “innocent” subject positions. By examining inadvertent, yet persistent implications in legacies of historical violence, “Lore” addresses fallacies of ubiquitous but reductive imaginations of historical agency, as well as sentimentalized notions of the “innocent child.”

Keywords

Rachel Seiffert “Lore” Postmemory Transgenerational memory Victim Perpetrator The implicated subject Child witness Mnemonic focal point 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of New MexicoAlbuquerqueUSA

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