Even recent past requires comprehension

Владимир Портнов

Not to remember the past means not to understand the present and the future. The fifth yearbook “Time to remember” is a good reason to look through all the volumes and to hear again our authors voices (many of them, by the way, became friends of the publishing house). They are 104, it is quite a bit! And what they shared with us on those hundreds of pages is a real treasure of memory.

Young people usually don’t know much about their parents, the more so – about grand-dads and grandmothers. Now the main thing is to turn them to the reminiscences of their seniors and encourage somehow or otherwise to take part in them. Another aspect of the idea is that rather young people often enough also have much to recall. Sergey Prokofiev, a great composer of the twentieth century, completed his memoirs at the age of twenty four. Alexander Herzen published the first chapters of “The past and the thoughts” when under forty…

Our first yearbook was opened with documentary story by Khana Bunk-Aronchik “We are those who were and will be”. Khana was born in Germany before Second World War and German children were her friends. Her priceless though horrible testimony of banishment, occupation and genocide is read breathlessly. It is certainly due to her talent and high education. But some of our authors are quite simple people without any literary experience and even education and still what they wrote or told us is unforgettable. Doesn’t it mean that spontaneity, sincerity, veracity of story are no less important? And this is characteristic for Harry Blekhman, Inna Kenigsberg, Elena Kucherova, Larisa Naidich, Ruth Gaft, Michail Shelkov…

Even recent past requires comprehension and memory but only what happened long ago gets a noble patina of History.

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