Appeasing the past: Denying history, destroying memories, creating myths

Schwartz, M 2013, 'Appeasing the past: Denying history, destroying memories, creating myths', Research in Ethical Issues in Organizations, vol. 9, pp. 155-169.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Appeasing the past: Denying history, destroying memories, creating myths
Author(s) Schwartz, M
Year 2013
Journal name Research in Ethical Issues in Organizations
Volume number 9
Start page 155
End page 169
Total pages 15
Publisher J A I Press
Abstract The chapter argues that you can appease both the present and the past; and that whilst appeasement is viewed with distaste that might not necessarily be so. Many traditions within moral philosophy itself seemingly advocate some degree of appeasement. Admittedly this could not be said of ethical egoists but it has long been disputed whether ethical egoism constitutes a moral philosophy solely because they refuse to appease anyone else insisting that their happiness cannot be compromised. Beyond that moral philosophy always involves appeasing someone or something. However in this chapter I am predominantly interested in those attempts to appease the past. I am especially interested in that given current developments in several states. With regard to those developments I am interested in the arguments made by Avishai Margalit that there is an ethics of memory. Margalit's insistence that there is an ethics of memory is not unrelated to the conservative project in that it is concerned with conserving the past and conveying it to subsequent generations. I contrast that with John Lukacs' explanation of populism and its propensity to create myths; and in doing so contemplate Bernard Lewis' arguments as to the tensions which will be created by denying history.
Subject Human Rights and Justice Issues
Keyword(s) Appeasement
ethics
memory
myths
populism
DOI - identifier 10.1108/S1529-2096(2013)0000009014
Copyright notice © 2013 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN 1529-2096
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