The "myth" of History and the history in the Myth
   
There is a close relationship between the cultural identity of a nation and the concept of history. We have been taught history as a matter of facts. In this way, it is presented as an archival project in which the historian works as an archivist who discovers, collects, identifies, analyzes and categorizes the evidence. The archival object is seen as a source of knowledge and in consequence, the history is seen as “a discipline founded on assertions of archival stability.”1  But, “clearly archives are not neutral: they embody the power inherent in accumulation, collection, and hoarding as well as that power inherent in command of a lexicon and rules of a language.”2 Rather than being a stable scientific product of knowledge, archives are cultural products subjected to change depending on the disciplines, discourses, and opinions. Thus, history itself stops being a stable source of knowledge and starts being alive and subjected to reinterpretations and transformations.
To explain the relationship between history and identity we can use an example:  as Colombians, we learn that our lands were discovered by Alonso de Ojeda in 1499. He “discovered” the Guajira peninsula and the Magdalena River. He named these lands Colombia in honor of Christopher Columbus, the “discoverer” of the American continent. In analyzing this, we understand how History has been used to “legitimize and normalize existing power relationships.”3 First, we can examine the word “discover”: it means to get knowledge of something unseen or unknown. Consequently, before the arrival of Europeans, there was no knowledge in America. In this way, we are denying and erasing the knowledge of the indigenous peoples. Rather than discovering America, they came here to conquer, steal, murder and erase the memory and identity of natives. “History-as-discipline has long served colonial master throughout the Americas, trumping the historical memory of native and marginalized communities who relied primarily on former practices, genealogies, and stories to sustain their sense of self- and communal identity.”4
The history that we know was written by European white men: it has a Eurocentric and patriarchal foundation. Several questions come to my mind: what is the role of natives in our history? And the role of African descendants? And the role of women? We as Colombians, and also as Latin-Americans, despise our culture and admire foreign ones, especially North American and European cultures. The roots of this lack of identity are in the history we learn and teach in schools. But how can we start working to fix this problem? We can use other sources of knowledge to redefine our history and consequently our identity: the repertories that contain valuable information about our origins. Our repertoires enact “embodied memory- performances, gestures, orality, movement, dance, singing- in short, all those acts usually thought of as ephemeral, non- reproducible knowledge.”5 These practices, especially the Myth, are the archive of the knowledge (the culture) of the Native Americans, which “has been strategically positioned outside of history, rendered invalid as a form of cultural transmission, in short, made un- and anti-historical by conquerors and colonists who wanted to monopolize power.”6 Rather than fantastic and illusionary tales, they contain, in the shape of stories, the history, the medicine, the religions and especially the identity of these cultures. These stories, which have neither beginning nor end, are considered by the indigenous people as living beings: they are still changing through the addition of new knowledge by future generations. Basically, the myth is the oral “library”, or “archive” in which are encoded all the knowledge and memories of these cultures.
Lastly, we, as Colombians and as Latin-Americans, should rethink our history and consequently our identity. The past can be studied through the discipline of history without forgetting that this is only just one approach, which should be complemented by the study of the minority cultures that also make up our hybrid identity. The repertoires can be used as a source with a value equal to the documents used by the archive of history. Only in this way we could end the “myth” of history as a fact and contract the marginalization of the repertoires as invalid mechanisms of memory.
    
   
Works cited

Taylor, Diana. Performances and/as History. The MIT Press, TDR (1988-), Vol. 50 (Spring, 2006), http:/www.jstor.org/stable/4492659, 28/08/2013, p 68.
Sekula, Allan, Reading an Archive: Photography Between labour and capital. The Photography Reader. Ed. Wells, Liz. Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, London and New York, p. 446.
Sekula, Allan, Reading an Archive: Photography Between labour and capital. The Photography Reader. Ed. Wells, Liz. Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, London and New York, p. 443.
Taylor, Diana. Performances and/as History. The MIT Press, TDR (1988-), Vol. 50 (Spring, 2006), http:/www.jstor.org/stable/4492659, 28/08/2013, p 70.
Taylor, Diana. Performances and/as History. The MIT Press, TDR (1988-), Vol. 50 (Spring, 2006), http:/www.jstor.org/stable/4492659, 28/08/2013, p 69.
Taylor, Diana. Performances and/as History. The MIT Press, TDR (1988-), Vol. 50 (Spring, 2006), http:/www.jstor.org/stable/4492659, 28/08/2013, p 70.