Living and dormant collective memories as contexts of history learning

Tsafrir Goldberg, Baruch B. Schwarz*, Dan Porat

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


This article investigates the effect of the vitality of historical issues in collective memory on students' history learning processes and products. Forty 12th grade students of different ethnic background participated in two historical problem-solving learning tasks. The historical issues were found to differ in their vitality in collective memory as signified by students' consensus, certainty, and reference to the present. Findings showed effects of issue vitality on narrative and argumentative change, and on the relation of historical source evaluation with narrative change. An interaction was found between issue vitality and ethnicity in the source evaluation: more vital collective memory narratives were more resistant to change and more prone to ethnic identity bias.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)223-237
Number of pages15
JournalLearning and Instruction
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2008


  • Argumentation
  • Collective memory
  • Historical thinking
  • History learning


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