"Language is a living thing" 「言葉は、生きている」A Japanese woman told me this when I was working for Japan Society in New York.  I was working as an assistant to the Director of Japanese Language Center in sometime in 2004/5 and had an opportunity to interact with people who visited the center.  The visitors were from what you may call the upper echelon of society and I probably would not have met these 'honorable' people if I was not working there.  But then again, it is New York and one can be in a company of greats at any moment, place and space.  For example, after hearing a great presentation, I walked up to say "thank you for your great speech.  I really like what you said.  Are you a professor?"  The person reply, "You mean you don't know who I am?"  That person was Gayatri Spivak to whom I would not get acquainted her work until a few years after.  New York.  This morning I woke up with New York on my mind.

Getting back to the topic of Language, Memory, History.
In Representation of Asian Americans on Film and Video class, students are reading about transnational/racial adoptee, refugees, war, militarism, memories, legacies and histories.  We have been discussing these topics for the last few weeks and I as their GSI (Graduate Student Instructor) have been grappling with these three pairings as my project also address these topics.  Language, like a body, holds and speaks one's memory and history with others.  With it, you can be connected to the language and bodies of others who share the same language-memory-history scape.  So what happens when one does not have the access to their ancestral language, like Cambodian refugees, Korean transnational/racial adoptee, and Vietnamese orphans who were separated from their mothers/motherland due to war such as Vietnam war, Korean war, and the World War II?  We watched three documentary films ("First Person Plural", "Daughter of Danang" and "Refugee") and language was/IS a barrier to reconnect back to their homeland to which they never knew.  The notion of return and home could only be imagined and fantasized before the trip 'back home' to meet their mothers/father/families, but became a mute implosion of that longing/desire when the bodies stood side by side.  In the "Refugee", one guy could speak so the barrier was not so shocking but the other two films, unspeakability created anther layer of uncomfortable distance.  Most students agree that language is what makes available cultural bonding and build relationship.  Without it, it's almost impossible to know the others.  I am blessed in a sense that I have access to language to which I hold my own memory/history, and body to which I hold the same/different kind of memory/history.  I'm here but I am there, I was there and I can return and be there again, but in different being there-ness.  I speak the standard form of language of speaking and writing of Japanese and Okinawan-Japanese やまとぅうちな〜口 but I also speak a different kind of language.  My gut tells me things, a certain gesture of others in Okinawa, and certain places speak to me about my own memory/history.  Places and all of their possibilities speak to/back and I speak to them when I position myself in various places.  In the cross-memory/history-scape, I speak the language of others to whom I don't know and I never met, and I will never meet.  Nevertheless, I speak it without knowing.  It's the same/different in Pluversality if one can open up to that possibility where everyone speaks equally and same/differently.  Accepting the beauty of contradiction.
There are so much to say.  Memory/History is invoked and summoned by what you say, and perhaps how you say in different forms of language that lives in/outside of the body. 

Postscript:  I received an email from an old friend from New York today.  We lost contact but found me.  Our friendship, though suspended by temporary time lapse, expresses continuity of memory/history of not forgetting.