The History of Forgetting: Los Angeles and the Erasure of Memory
Los Angeles is a city which has long thrived on the continual re-creation of own myth. In this highly original work, Norman Klein examines the process of memory erasure in the city. Using a distinctive mixture of fact and fiction, Klein takes us on an “anti-tour” of downtown LA. He investigates the life for Vietnamese immigrants in the City of Dreams, playfully imagines Wa...more
Paperback, 330 pages
Published June 17th 1997 by Verso
(first published April 1st 1997)
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Apr 10, 2011 Ian rated it 4 of 5 stars
"So do not get confused by the glitz. Outwardly, scripted places like Victoria Gardens, or Citywalk, or the Grove may look anti-urban; artificial [...] They seem to epitomize neoliberalism, where every public act is privatized [...] But actually this is meta-urbanism: a metropolitanized suburb (a way to grow public money) [...] The message is paradoxical. These scripted illusions are monuments to the independence of cities, but also to private wealth taking over [...] [C]ities must turn in to de...more
LA is one of those cities we all like to think we know, after all we see it in our mass and popular cultural texts, hear it in the news, read it all over - its sheer ubiquity makes it a know. Norman Klein challenges that notion to argue that our knowledge of LA is a kbowledge based on forgetting, that is popular and mass cultural texts make LA an unknown and continually invwented and reconstrcuted before our very eyes. Contrarian and as such quite brilliantly insightful.