Issue No. 7 of Habitus, a publication “rooted in the experience and language of the Jewish diaspora,” focuses on Berlin. In his editorial, “Becoming Berlin,” Joshua Ellison explores the role of memory in the Berlin culture and society. He writes, “For societies, memory becomes a matter of public accountability, so the moral stakes are high. The painful process—very much active and agonizing in Germany—of defining and interpreting shared history is part of the pact we enter that creates community. In public, we decide what to remember, and that tells us something essential about who we are now. Berlin is so dense with reminders of the past that the contemporary city sometimes seems to recede, driven under the surface by their weight. But the question of what Berlin’s memorial culture tells us about contemporary Germany is still an open one.”
The full editorial is available online.