Memoir suffers from the potential for bias on the part of the author toward self-preservation, and may also represent an effort on the part of the author to preserve their own family members or friends’ memory by avoiding writing negatively about their kin. As well, memoir may suffer as this record comes from personal experience rather than through rigorous academic work, and is therefore subject to biases which reflect the moral ideologies and perspectives of a different time; perspectives which may restrict the types of stories which can be told. Each of these perspectives are as well extremely important to my thinking about my own life and story. For instance, Jocelyn Bartkevicius’ understanding of memoir as dependant upon subjective individual experience has highlighted for me the importance of my own background in influencing my work and my understanding of A. May.
Bartkevicius, J., “‘The Person to Whom Things Happened’: Meditations on the Tradition of Memoir,” Fourth Genre: Explorations in Nonfiction, 1,1 (Spring 1999): 133-140.