Poll: Mandela’s Death (Poll is Closed)

This is the first of several polls I’m using to find patterns in alternate memories.

If you recall Nelson Mandela’s death prior to December 2013, I hope you’ll remember (or provide a thoughtful guess about) the year — in the 1980s — you think he died.

Please vote just once, and for just one year. The default — remembering his death in 2013 — is included for those who want to register that they don’t have the alternate Mandela memory.


[yop_poll id=”3″]

9 thoughts on “Poll: Mandela’s Death (Poll is Closed)”

  1. Dang – I tried to intelligently guess when it might have been for me, but I need to change my answer. I think I guessed 1984, however, I used to watch the Cosby Show. Sondra and Elvin’s twins were born in 1988 and named Nelson and Winnie. At the time, I knew the Mandelas to be alive. Later on I remember thinking, “They named the babies after two heroes and now Nelson is dead and Winnie is mired in scandal. Good thing it’s just a television show!” So that thought would have had to be in 88, 89 or later.

  2. Well, after holding back for a while, today is apparently the day that I start chiming in. Firstly, thank you Fiona for bringing this phenomenon out into the open for discussion! I won’t make a super-long post here, but I’m definitely one of those people with alternate memories that appear to be common to this forum — as well as other memories that may (or may not) be shared by other readers.

    Regarding Nelson Mandela’s, I chose 1986…but it was possibly 1985. My memories are clear, but as I was a young teenager in junior high school — I remember the circumstances as it related to my own life, not the specific semester (which would remind me of the specific calendar year). My memories of the event are an amalgamation from one day in school where his death was a discussion in multiple classes. My Biology, Spanish, and Social Studies all initiated conversations with the class. (and I think we discussed it Language Arts as well, but I’m not positive on that)

    What I do remember are the topics we discussed. How it was such a shame that he died in prison — how he would be documented in history as a martyr for equality in his country — how he left behind a loyal wife who sacrificed as much in her own way — the origins of the apartheid culture and its similarities & differences as compared to our own country’s history — and which figures in our history were similar (and dissimilar) to Mandela. In short, all of the discussions you would expect thoughtful teachers to engage in with their students — and yes, even in science & Spanish class. (I had great teachers at that school.)

    One last tidbit — when he “died” in this timeline, I remember complaining to a couple of work colleagues that the media really needed to get their facts straight before they ran with a bogus story as he’d died years and years ago… luckily my work colleagues were much younger than me, and apparently so clueless as to world events that they didn’t argue. Ha!

    1. Oops! I just remembered that Biology was in 9th grade — so the year in my memories was either 1986 or 1987 depending on the semester. (our classes were school-year-long)

      1. Thanks for the update, Jennifer! That helps me see the patterns of what people recall.

        I think many of us remember things contextually — “the year of the big snowstorms,” or “the semester when I sat at the front of the room, in homeroom,” and so on — so it’s normal to need time to drop that into a specific calendar year.

        Cheerfully, Fiona

        1. Fiona agree with your second paragraph 100%. At least for me , I have always done that. Everything important, is tied to something else.

          People always think I need to get on game shows because of my memory of such trivial things. But then again, maybe everything we (us here) are remembering isn’t so trivial?

          Here is an obscure example that popped in my head at this moment, for example.

          Thursday nights, 1984 on NBC ” the Cosby show” at 7 (central time), followed by “Family Ties” at 730. WHY do I remember that? No clue, really, I was a senior in H.S.
          at the time. Its always “visualized” in my head with a calendar. Like I said I do this with EVERYTHING, I wonder if others do this? Mike

      2. Jennifer, welcome, I was like you I held back forever. I just couldn’t after having SO many of these memories. Don’t be afraid to post here, nobody will judge you. Fiona runs the most fair forum I have ever been on (and they run the gamut of interests). I chose 1987, just from reading hundreds of posts on this site, I am starting to see some patterns form. Mostly in the forms of the years people remember things, and their age groups. It’s a fascinating site. Mike

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