Today has not turned out as planned.
I had started to read ‘Mediated Memories in a Digital Age‘ by Jose van Dijck and although very interesting and useful, her discussion in the introduction regarding the use of mediated images and conversation as a way of sharing past experience, has made me feel somewhat distressed and uncomfortable. In particular, the importance of this in constructing both a shared and personal autobiography for our sense of continuity between past and future,
It has confirmed and acknowledged why I have found the lack of this, when it has occurred in my personal life, so difficult.
As a single child, now with no parents, there is very rarely anyone to ‘verify’ or discuss ‘shared’ memories with, even though I acknowledge that the accounts are often different for different people.
Not being able to share memories of my own, or my children’s childhoods and teenage years with someone who was always there is a source of sorrow to me and even the initial reading of this book has brought this home.
Then, unexpectedly, I received a text from a friend and colleague, Kathy, who told me of the death of Keith, our life-model during our Fine Art Foundation Course at OCVC from 2003-5.
I had already heard from Jon that he was very poorly.
Talking to Kathy about Keith, all the people who remember him, the connections between us, our interactions and how these continue, demonstrated to me one of the many other shared collective experiences in my life, despite this originating from such a sad event.