How to Reconcile the Past and the Present

Experiences, Proposals and Ideas from All Over the World


  • Domenico Palombi University of Rome



In Western culture, or in what today is called global civilization despite its diverse traits and contradictory evaluations, the relationship with the past has always been both profound and contradictory and in some cases even conflicting.

Actualization of the past has occurred in different periods of time and for a large variety of reasons simultaneously assuming cognitive, contemplative, evocative, emulative, normative forms.

In this continuous and multi-faceted process, ideological and political motivations led to the revival and legacy of the past seen, from time to time, as an analogical model, a foundation of identity, a source of ethical and aesthetic inspiration, or a tool for cultural formation and social pedagogy. In this sense, the past has become an absolute cultural value and – ideally – has constituted a powerful paradigm for the conception of new models and new metaphors for the construction of material and immaterial forms of the present.


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