". . . But the past does not exist independently from the present. Indeed, the past is only past because there is a present, just as I can point to something over there only because I am here. But nothing is inherently over there or here. In that sense, the past has no content. The past -- or more accurately, pastness -- is a position. Thus, in no way can we identify the past as past." p. 15

". . . But we may want to keep in mind that deeds and words are not as distinguishable as often we presume. History does not belong only to its narrators, professional or amateur. While some of us debate what history is or was, others take it into their own hands." p. 153

Silencing the Past: Power and the Production of History (1995) by Michel-Rolph Trouillot

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Michelle Obama White House Christmas 2012

The First Lady and her staff have provided another splendid White House Christmas look.

As usual there are many re-purposed and resurrected items, including tree decorations from each administration's First Ladies since the Kennedy White House. There is much use of re-cycled materials. Yet everything looks ample, festive and elegant, while providing all the warmth, cheer and comfort that we wish for the Christmas season. I am impressed. First Lady Michelle Obama, as hostess to the party for military personnel's children that officials presents the Christmas White House to the public wore another lovely outfit that she's worn more than once before (as this coverage is in the WaPo's Style section, the reporters always mention what she wears and always tells us when she's worn it before -- evidently they can remember these things!)

This year, what is different is the use of tropical colors in some parts of the decorations -- bright and tropical and clear: citrus yellows. oranges, and greesn, fuschia (one of my favorite colors) and blues. It's gorgeous.

This Washington Post coverage provides a photograph slide show, and a video, on which we hear the FLOTUS describe White House Christmas traditions to the children. As usual she tells us all that this is "our house," and projects the real pleasure she and her family have living there. The party is so arranged that at some point the children can go running through about 11 rooms looking for Bo the White House Dog snowflake Christmas tree ornaments. It looks and feels like a real party, and the FLOTUS looks, as usual, as if she's enjoying it as much as anyone. Then there is the photo slide show.

Yes, she said, last week when the Tree arrived (there are 54 lesser trees inside the White House): "We can have Christmas now."

No comments: