Can you experience nostalgia for some time that you didn't live in?

Yes! I have heard many stories my parents told over the years about what it was like in the 40s, the music, the wardrobe, etc. In my mind, I picture those things, and it seems I am there. I believe it would have been a time period to experience, minus the war that was in progress. Glad you ask this question. I never knew quite how to explain it myself, but you nailed it.

Yes i love everything 50's, 60's and 70's. From house decor to fashion and music i'm in my element. Even the colours of those days, the beautiful 50's tones of green and the bright vivid oranges and yellows of the 60's and 70's i adore. Anything from the 80's onwards does absolutely nothing for me.

Sure, if you dont like the time you ARE in, you can long for an earlier historic period. I do that.

The time I HAVE lived in is the only time I'm NOT nostalgic for. I CAN'T STAND my own generation. Let somebody else be nostalgic for the 50s and the 60s. I prefer World War II, the Roaring Twenties, La Belle Epoch, the Federalist Era, the Age of Enlightenment, or pretty much anything else.

I love to dance. I always thought it would be fun to live in the days when one was asked out and you dressed and went to a club for drink and maybe dinner and then danced to the band. It was a social event and you knew a lot of the people there. I used to be asked out to dance and we sat in smokey bars with good bands and lousy dance floors. It was great fun but not the same.
I had to come back and add that I so love the internet so I chose now as the best time. Any thing you want to know is there … no more Encyclopedia Britannicas or repair books. says nostalgia is " a wistful desire to return in thought or in fact to a former time in one's life, to one's home or homeland, or to one's family and friends." So, I assume one cannot experience nostalgia for a time or place in which he/she did not live.

Since I was a child, I've read English, Irish, and Scottish history and historical novels. I've always had a very strong longing to visit those times in those places, and that desire feels much the same as my desire to return to the time and the neighborhood in which I grew up — the neighborhood that was torn down in 1959 to make way for an interstate highway. But, according to the dictionary, only one is nostalgia.

Of course, if you believe in reincarnation — and I do– that, to borrow rollickingred's phrase, is a whole 'nother story.

I would say no. How can you experience nostalgia, unless you have lived and experienced
things to be nostalgic about? You wouldn't feel any identity to the period you hadn't lived,
to make it possible.

That must be true. Cause I love to watch "Downton Abbey," frontier family movies. I like all the " Anne of Green Gables" movies. But I don't like Westerns with a lot of violence. Don't like the War movies either. "Mansfield Park" and "Pride and Prejudice," were cool movies.

To experience anything you have to be a part of it. So your question is asking can we live in another time in the past? No because nostalgia means in the past and you cannot go back, only in your dreams.

Not really, but I do like the old movies of long dresses and parasols.

Daisy's answer said it for me.

After watching movies about certain eras I think so. Some of those movies make the 30's seem interesting, but people I knew that lived through that era found those times very hard.

dunno — but I think we all do

Yes, ever since I was a little girl I've always been fascinated by the 1930's.
I always wished I can be alive in those times .
I always love to read history about those times and what went down.

no longer somewhat yet some cases in history sound as if they could were exciting – knights and ladies or gladiators and romans yet for most human beings, except for the very prosperous, existence could were undesirable, depressing and short! Mo college Lecturer

I'm sure you can.

A few weeks ago I told a questioner that I should have died at Gettysburg instead of surviving Vietnam

I think you can have an interest in an era ( such as the days of the Civil War ) in which you never lived, but nostalgia is a whole 'nother story .

Yes, 1800's America.

Sure, why not?

Woody Allen did a movie all about that exact subject called "Forget Paris"


That's like reminiscing w/ people one doesn't know.

Defining nostalgia as " A sentimental longing for the past …", yes, you can.

I think so. I love watching old movies from the 30s and 40s…the clothing, the furniture, even the jargon makes me wish I had experienced the era.

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