December 2013
Przeglad Biblioteczny;2013, Vol. 81 Issue 4, p440
Objective -- This article is to introduce theoretical motivation for the interaction and links joining national identity, collective memory, cultural heritage, digitization and libraries understood as memory institutions, and substantiate memory institutions and digital collective memory as an essential source for national identity. Research methods -- The author claims that the digital resources managed by memory institutions, particularly libraries, are the fundamentals of national identity. Therefore she discusses postmodernism as a theoretical basis for the system of concepts of "national identity -- collective memory -- cultural heritage -- memory institutions -- digital resources -- users", and presents the structure and individual concepts of this system. The research method used was qualitative research with discourse analysis and a theoretical analysis of information sources such as: J. Baudrillard, I. Hassan, D. Harvey, R. J. Lifton, J. F. Liotard, P. Waugh, A. J. Toynbee, G. E. Veith et al., conventions and resolutions of the European Commission, Committee and Parliament, legal provisions in culture and cultural heritage by the Government of Latvia. Results and conclusions -- National identity is seen as a totality of meanings the main manifestations of which are the cultural and national heritage as the basis for the personal system of values and experience. National identity is formed by the totality of conceptions on affiliation with something. Conceptions, ideas are formed in the interaction process of personality and the collective memory based on digital resources. The collective memory, i.e. the resources in libraries, museums and archives, particularly the digital ones, is the main element for the construction of national identity. This construction is delivered by memory institutions through collecting, harvesting, saving, arranging and providing access to resources via the digitization process. Digitization should become the main tool for maintenance, inclusion, communication, and identity in the process of globalization. The author introduces theoretical model, based on the discourse of postmodernism ideas, theoretical conclusions of world researchers and philosophers, official conventions, guidelines and declarations -- for justifying memory institutions' resources as the basis of national identity. Such a theoretical analysis of the "national identity -- collective memory -- cultural heritage -- memory institutions -- digital resources -- users" is the first experiment in Latvia to place the important role of memory institutions, particularly libraries, in a system of cultural heritage, digitization, new environment and national identity. The main conclusion is that the philosophical discourse of postmodernism accepts the idea of the leading role of memory institutions in the structure of national/digital heritage and national identity.


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