History is less in fashion than it used to be. First came that damned 20th century with its obsession on the “now”. Now comes the 21st century with its obsessions about the “future”. Racing forward, we look back rather infrequently. Too bad for us!
And yet, there are signs that people want to look back. I think that was at least part of the appeal of Harry Potter. Sure the magic was fun, but Harry lived out a historical role in a historical place.
In that sense,Harry is not a strictly modern character. and we do not want him to be one. he is more special without the mantel of modernity.
Of course, this type of story is most easily told about exceptional figures. Like the boys who went to Harrow and later became prime ministers, or great literary figures. Or both, in the case of Winston Churchill
Winnie is on the left side, leaning over the stair railing.
But what about our own histories? Could we actually be the recipients of and actors in the most intimate and amazing stories ever told? Using Hamlet’s famous words, ould we choose “to be” instead of “not to be”?
Why not? We have the tools at our disposal. We only need to use them. Or should we remain Prufrockian?