50 Gate

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History can be viewed as a sequential series of indisputable events, whereas memory is of such events that are highly subjective, and affect the way in which they are perceived.We are shown this in the text 'The Fiftieth Gate' which is a documented account written by Mark Raphael Baker as a historian, a father and also as a son. In order to discover his parent's stories from both personal and professional views, the author revisits the past of his parents who both survived the Holocaust. In 'The Fiftieth Gate' the author Mark Baker combines different types of texts including video sessions, conversations, documents, various perspectives, statistics and recreation of stories told. The text is structured using fifty gates, with each chapter representing one gate and continues in a circular structure.

In order to truely understand the past we must combine our knowledge of documented evidence with the memories and personal experiences that fill the gaps of history. History can be seen as a view of the past, however there will always be different perspectives and interpretations of any one event. Whereas memory is the motion of recognizing previous experiences and traumatic experiences which is often very subjective. This contrasting of both acknowledges that memory brings life and colour to history and in so doing offers us a more complete, valuable and more realistic representation of the past. History is often written by the victors and may be questioned to clarify truth. When you unlock history, you unlock memory. Memory has the power to correct 'historical facts' which are open to influences and changes over time, also without memory, we cannot paint an accurate picture of our past. Together history and memory provide the key to self knowledge, they help shape the way we perceive things in our own world. In Mark Baker's 'The Fiftieth Gate' the past is the holocaust. Baker intermingles history and memory in his exploration of his parents' memories of it and in...
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