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Article Dans Une Revue Culture & Psychology Année : 2013

Rumour as a symptom of collective forgetfulness


This psychosocial study attempts to shed light on the essential distinction between memory and recollection, and suggests a view of forgetfulness in terms of its intrinsic links with transmission. We study the effects and manifestations of collective forgetful- ness, which still remain under-explored in psychology. The relatively recent case of a rumour that offered an explanation for and asserted the unprecedented character of a natural disaster—a symptom of forgetfulness—will serve as the basis for our investiga- tion. The qualitative methodological design (documentary research, focus groups) used in this research reveals that the group has not transmitted its own painful past and that the rumour that continues to be promulgated offers an explanation which suits the residents, demonstrating much about their identity and history in the process. This paper will attempt therefore to investigate the ways in which this forgetfulness is transmitted, as well as the evident paradox of its coexistence with the recollection of history within the collective memory of the very same group.


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hal-00874028 , version 1 (10-07-2017)


  • HAL Id : hal-00874028 , version 1


Valérie Haas, Elodie Levasseur. Rumour as a symptom of collective forgetfulness. Culture & Psychology, 2013, 19 (1), pp.60-75. ⟨hal-00874028⟩
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