Some kind of tomorrow

How can hope be sustained when traumatic memories of conflict or oppression haunt a person or group? This question has become central in a course I am teaching with an African-American colleague. In “Remembrance and Reconciliation,” we are examining the legacies of racism and racial division in South Africa and the U.S. Not surprisingly, our discussions quickly focused on issues of despair and hope. Traumatic events and the remembrance of them can transform optimism into despair and occlude any sense of hope for a different and better future.