Monday, June 20, 2016

Creating a “Memory” Community

The Hiroshima and Nagasaki Archive provide a powerful model of how technology can be used for a new vision of peace and for peace studies. Locally, in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, digital mapping technology provided a means for young people and atomic bombing survivors to join together and create a digital Memory Community, which could then be shared with the world. Through this experience, students and survivors created both local and authentic communities with which to understand the history of the atomic bombings, as well as a virtual global community.

In Hiroshima, local high school students, atomic bomb survivors, and the archive creators continue to hold workshops to sustain community and to share knowledge with others. This exchange has resulted in a shift from passive peace studies where learners simply looked at documents, to proactive studies where participants become active agents, participating in keeping memories alive.

Last year, crowdfunding was used to hold a workshop in Nagasaki. High school students, atomic bomb survivors, and the public gathered around and used the archive to have a discussion.