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What Do Hope, Despair and Memory Have in Common?

In his Nobel Lecture of 11 December 1986, Elie Wiesel—the Nobel Peace Prize recipient that year—discusses "Hope, Despair and Memory."

Do those three concepts have anything to do with each other? If so, what? If not, why did Wiesel group them together?

Near the beginning of his lecture, Wiesel says: “For me, hope without memory is like memory without hope.” What does he mean by this?

Would it make sense to couple “despair” with “memory” in a similar fashion? In other words, is it reasonable to suggest: Despair without memory is like memory without despair? Why, or why not?

 


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