Historical collective trauma is embedded in the shared consciousness of a collective, which can be considered as being the collective’s culture. The healing of historical collective trauma is a most complex and challenging task. At the core of it is a collective process of working through painful and overwhelming experiences, which is only possible in a safe and supportive environment. This process involves remembering and making sense of defined events and depends on the possession of a capable and authentic “collective thinking apparatus,” which is proposed here, to be a function of a collective’s culture. The healing of single, defined traumatic events is, in many instances, limited by a pervasive, insidious, and continuing process of damage to and distortion of the underlying culture. This is a complex form of cultural trauma that needs to be addressed in order for the healing of historical collective trauma to be fully accomplished.
I wish to acknowledge the guidance of Dr. George Halasz and Dr. Paul Valent for my consideration of the Holocaust; the views expressed, and any errors, are entirely mine alone.
"The Healing of Historical Collective Trauma,"
Genocide Studies and Prevention: An International Journal:
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usf.edu/gsp/vol15/iss1/10
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