Representation of Text History and Memory.

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History is the compilation of events and peoples perspective in events, all meshed up into a montage to create a definitive account of events. The Smithsonian website created by the American government shows a compelling selection of objects images and personal stories from the events of September 11 for the public to view at any time on the internet. Loose change is a documentary by Dylan Avery which has an opposing perspective to that of the terrorists attacking America. Both texts provide a recount of an event in history. Within history there is scope for challenging the disputable facts that we have been presented with. The Smithsonian website was designed to show the American perspective and what the Americans think happened on the day of September 11. The images and objects are considered to be the indisputable facts, whereas the personal stories are written by individual people that have memories of the events that took place on that day. These memories can be very biased depending on the individual self, religion or culture. This bias recount of an individual’s memory of the event is published and considered to be factual history. Memory can affect history and change the way it is perceived by other people which is distortion of the truth. An example of this is “when the public institution of the Australian War Memorial tries to outline its perspectives they incorporate political baggage”. This is because the government shows what it wants to the public, this is “the message they want to promote”. The documentary “Loose Change” by Dylan Avery has a complete opposite view of what the Smithsonian website wants to promote. They gather evidence from many different sources and put it together to show their own perspective of the event of September 11. Due to it being directed and made by an individual, it will contain some elements of bias because of the different views and beliefs that the director has. The evidence collected can contain indisputable and disputable facts. This can cause a distortion of the truth and create a new perspective. Some of the facts will be from individual memory which will also contain bias. Therefore memory again affects the recount of history and causes distortion. The Smithsonian website promotes its views by using visual and language techniques. The visual techniques used include symbolism in the images such as the torn American flag which symbolises that the Americans were under attack and went through so much pain, this image reinforces their perspective of what there recount of the events are. Another technique used is placement of images such as the placing of the twin towers on fire on the front page of the website which makes the reader feel empathy for the American people. The language techniques used on the Smithsonian website includes emotive and persuasive language to appeal to the viewer of this website. Emotive language is used throughout the website, an example of this is “hijacked a jet and used it as weapons against the United States” and “most shocking days in American history”. These visual and literary techniques help reinforce their view on the events and appeal to the reader and viewer of this website. The documentary “loose change” also uses visual and language techniques to present and reinforce its view and perspective of the event. An example of a visual technique used in this documentary is manipulation in which they manipulate the facts and the memory recollections of the event to support their theory of what happened on September 11. These techniques help reinforce their image and appeal to the viewer. Another technique used is omission in which they omit some of the evidence and story recounts to make sure than viewers think they are completely correct. This documentary is biased and its authenticity is questioned as to whether the facts presented are disputable or not. The Smithsonian website’s authenticity and legitimacy must be questioned; this is...
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